Notre Dame to host G.K. Chesterton Collection dedication ceremony in London

Author: Colleen Wilcox

Chesterton Archive. Photo by John Cairns.
Chesterton Archive. Photo by John Cairns.

The University of Notre Dame’s London Global Gateway is hosting a dedication ceremony to celebrate the acquisition of the G.K. Chesterton Collection, which includes books, personal effects, art and other items related to the life of this renowned 20th-century English Catholic writer, orator, apologist and provocateur.

The blessing and dedication ceremony will take place on Thursday (Oct. 27) at the London Global Gateway, followed by a chance for attendees to engage with some items from the collections, and a celebratory dinner at the Royal Horseguards. The event will be led by Notre Dame President Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., and Aidan Mackey, one of the foremost Chesterton experts who independently compiled the collection.

“It would be difficult to overstate our excitement about the acquisition of the Chesterton Collection. The fact that it’s housed in Notre Dame’s magnificent Fischer Hall in central London is a point of great pride, both for the London Global Gateway and the University of Notre Dame,” says Fr. Jim Lies, C.S.C., senior director for academic initiatives and partnerships at the London Global Gateway.

“It gives us an abundant array of opportunities to enhance student research and learning and to intersect with an international network of scholars whose varied research interests connect with the broad spectrum of Chesterton’s life and work.”

To coincide with the dedication ceremony, an academic conference focused on G.K. Chesterton will be hosted on Friday (Oct. 28). The conference looks at the multifaceted nature of Chesterton’s work through a series of panel discussions with academics from a diverse range of disciplines.

“The G.K. Chesterton Collection is a key representation of the ways in which Notre Dame can advance scholarship, engage scholars and communities, and enhance understanding of the Catholic intellectual traditions,” says Michael Pippenger, vice president and associate provost for internationalization at Notre Dame. “This is precisely what we aspire to do in London to make the University’s research and global presence not just better known, but also more meaningful to students, faculty and communities.”

The full holdings — housed at the Oxford Oratory since 2013 — were transferred in 2019 to Notre Dame’s London Global Gateway on Trafalgar Square, providing increased access to researchers and Chesterton enthusiasts. The collection has a public access exhibit for Chesterton fans visiting London.

Learn more about the G.K. Chesterton Collection.

Originally published by Colleen Wilcox at international.nd.edu on Oct. 18.