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An integral part of the College’s curriculum, the St. Vincent de Paul Lecture and Concert Series complements both the content of the academic program and the Socratic discussion method used in its classes. Because it is also necessary for students to learn how to grapple with long, extended arguments — unlike in the classroom, where they analyze arguments in smaller steps — lectures are scheduled throughout the year. These addresses are followed by open-ended discussions that permit careful questioning and detailed answers. In addition, concerts of classical, operatic, or sacred music are hosted two or three times a year in order to encourage students to develop a love of the best kinds of music.

Inspired by the charity of St. Vincent de Paul — both to the materially poor and to “spiritually poor” heretics of his time, whom he helped through his gentle correction — Barbara and Paul Henkels endowed the Lecture Series in 2007. “We think Thomas Aquinas College graduates are uniquely gifted to serve those poor because they receive a profound and unique classical education,” said the Henkels. “As God called St. Vincent, He is also calling our graduates to bring the Truth to a society maimed by distortion and the culture of death. The ‘poorest of the poor’ today, as always, are those who do not know the Truth.”

In giving their most generous donation, the Henkels made only one stipulation, which, they noted, “should be easy for Thomas Aquinas College to meet,” namely, that “the lectures shall clearly show that the College supports the official Church of Rome and abides by its teaching. They should serve to sharpen the clear image that Thomas Aquinas College is truly and responsibly Catholic. Whatever the topic and whoever the speaker, it is hoped that they will be the kind of people who will bring honor to our Church and the College.”

The St. Vincent De Paul Series provides for the College’s annual Convocation and Commencement speakers, many of whom travel from abroad. It includes the All-College Seminar, in which, once a semester, tutors and students of all classes — seniors and freshmen, sophomores and juniors — gather in small groups of roughly 20 to discuss a reading that is not part of the regular curriculum.

In total, these cultural and intellectual events play a vital role in the mission of the College. As Mrs. Hinkels said in 2007, “We believe that Thomas Aquinas College students, who receive the richest of blessings — an education and formation unsurpassed by any university in our nation — will appreciate St. Vincent de Paul as they bring their gifts to society.”

Lectures and concerts on both campuses are open to alumni and friends of Thomas Aquinas College, free of charge. Below is the current St. Vincent de Paul Lecture and Concert Series schedule:

California Schedule

Aug. 30
7:00 p.m.

Opening Lecture:
“The Order of Astronomy and Music to Wisdom”
Dr. Joseph Hattrup
Tutor
Thomas Aquinas College

Sept. 13
7:00 p.m.

Fall Concert
Paul Galbraith, classical guitarist

Sept. 27
7:00 p.m.

Lecture: Mr. Daniel Lendman
From His Fullness We Have All Received: 
Understanding Christ’s Human Knowledge”
Adjunct Professor
Ave Maria University

Oct. 4
7:00 p.m.

Fall All-College Seminar
Reading: “Barn Burning,” by William Faulkner 

Oct. 18
7:00 p.m.

Lecture: Dr. Bruce Marshall
“From His Fullness We Have All Received: Understanding Christ’s Human Knowledge”
Professor of Christian Doctrine
Southern Methodist University

Nov. 8
7:00 p.m.

Lecture: Dr. Michael Mack
“Shakespeare’s Christian Ethics”
Associate Professor
Department of English
The Catholic University of America

Nov. 22
7:00 p.m

Thanksgiving Concert
The Thomas Aquinas College Choir

Jan. 17
7:00 p.m.

Dr. Timothy B. Noone
“Augustine on Words, Signs, Thought, and Things in De Magistro: One of Many Ways to the Same Truth”
Professor of Philosophy
Catholic University of America

January 28
12:00 p.m.

St. Thomas Day Lecture
Does the Father Want the Son to Die? 
Aquinas on Christ's Passion and the Trinity
Rev. Dominic Legge, O.P.
Assistant Professor,
Systematic Theology
Dominican House of Studies

Feb. 7
7:00 p.m.

Spring All-College Seminar

Feb. 21
7:00 p.m.

Presidents’ Day Lecture
“From Valley Forge to Appomattox: George Washington and the Formation of the American Nation”
Hon. J. Leon Holmes
United States District Judge
Eastern District of Arkansas

March 20
7:00 p.m.

Dr. Carol A. Day
“Lining up Numbers: The Place of Books 7-9 in Euclid’s Elements
Tutor Emeritus 
Thomas Aquinas College

 

New England Schedule

Aug. 30
7:00 p.m.

Opening Lecture:
Theological Faith and Catholic Liberal Education
Dr. Thomas J. Kaiser
Associate Dean, Tutor
Thomas Aquinas College, New England

Sept. 6
7:00 p.m.

Fall Concert
The Madison String Quartet

Sept. 20
7:00 p.m.

Lecture: Dr. David M. Whalen 
Provost and Professor of English
Hillsdale College

Oct. 4
7:00 p.m.

Fall All-College Seminar
Reading: “Barn Burning,” by William Faulkner 

Oct. 25
7:00 p.m.

Lecture: Rev. David Vincent Meconi, S.J.
Associate Professor of Patristics, Theological Studies
Director, Catholic Studies
Saint Louis University

Nov. 8
7:00 p.m.

Lecture: Rev. Sebastian Walshe, O.Praem. (’94)
Professor of Philosophy
St. Michael’s Abbey

Jan. 17
7:00 p.m.

Lecture: Dr. Robert Augros
Dr. Robert Augros
Professor of Philosophy
Magdalen College of Liberal Arts

Jan. 28
7:00 p.m.

St. Thomas Day Lecture 
Rev. Joseph Koterski, S.J.
Associate Professor of Philosophy
Fordham University
“The Love of Learning and Desire for God”

Feb. 7
7:00 p.m.

Spring All-College Seminar

March 6
7:00 p.m.

Presidents’ Day Lecture
“From Valley Forge to Appomattox: George Washington and the Formation of the American Nation”
Hon. J. Leon Holmes
United States District Judge
Eastern District of Arkansas

March 27
7:00 p.m.

Dr. Carol A. Day
“Lining up Numbers: The Place of Books 7-9 in Euclid’s Elements
Tutor Emeritus 
Thomas Aquinas College

 


 

 

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Lecture & Concert Series 2016
Major Paul W. White

“The education teaches you how to think in a structured, ordered fashion. In modern medicine … that is very helpful.”

– Major Paul W. White (’95)

Vascular Surgeon, U.S. Army Medical Corps

“Few schools anywhere can match Thomas Aquinas College’s extraordinary blend of deep Catholic faith and rich academic formation.”

– The Most Rev. Charles J. Chaput

Archbishop of Philadelphia