Thursday, October 8, 2015 - 09:30

Theology expert will examine Pope Francis’ take on climate change during talk at Assumption

WORCESTER, MA (October 8, 2015)—During his historic visit to the United States last month, Pope Francis addressed a number of important (or timely) issues, including his thoughts on climate change and the environment. The Assumption College community will learn more about the contentious debate of climate change when Celia E. Deane-Drummond, Ph.D., director of the Center for Theology, Science and Flourishing at the University of Notre Dame, kicks off the College’s 2015-16 Presidential Lecture Series with her lecture, “The Theological Tapestry of Laudato Si': A Franciscan Vision for a New Earth” on Monday, Oct. 19, at 7 p.m. in the Salon of Assumption’s La Maison Francaise building, located at 500 Salisbury Street. 
Dr. Deane-Drummond will examine the theological threads weaving through Pope Francis’ recent encyclical, Praise Be to You (Laudato Si'), to identify the deepest roots of its call for ecological conversion. In his encyclical, Pope Francis writes that the Earth is threatened by man's abuse of his freedom and challenges all people to work together to safeguard her. Dr. Deane-Drummond will argue that the motivation for the encyclical is theological and draws its primary inspiration from the Franciscan tradition.
Dr. Deane-Drummond has noted in interviews that Pope Francis has made creation one of the  cornerstones of his papacy. In June 2015, she penned an op-ed for Mashable on how Pope Francis is reshaping the climate discussion. She writes that “he will not romanticize the Earth. Instead, he will speak to the need of human responsibility.”
Dr. Deane-Drummond has been a professor of theology at the University of Notre Dame since August 2011. Deane-Drummond currently serves on the International Advisory Board of the John Templeton Foundation and is co-editor of the journal Philosophy, Theology and the Sciences. Dr. Deane-Drummond has published numerous articles, books, edited collections and contributions to books, focusing particularly on the engagement of systematic theology and the biological sciences, alongside practical, ethical discussion in bioethics and environmental ethics. She has lectured widely both nationally and internationally on all areas relating theology and theological ethics with different aspects of the biosciences, especially ecology and genetics.
Prior to joining the University of Notre Dame, she held a professorial chair in theology and the biological sciences at the University of Chester, and was Director of the Centre for Religion and the Biosciences that was launched in 2002. She was editor of the international journal Ecotheology from 2000 to 2006. Dr. Deane-Drummond has a degree in natural sciences from Cambridge University; a doctorate in plant physiology from Reading University; an honors degree in theology and a doctorate in systematic theology from Manchester University; and completed two postdoctoral fellowships at the University of British Columbia and Cambridge University. 
The President’s Lecture Series at Assumption College is a public forum in which important ethical, spiritual and human issues are illuminated and examined within the Catholic intellectual tradition. All events in the President’s Lecture Series at Assumption College are free and open to the public. RSVPs are encouraged due to limited space. To reserve a spot, please call Sharon Mahoney at 508.767.7322 or e-mail
Founded in 1904 by the Augustinians of the Assumption in Worcester, Mass., Assumption College offers undergraduate students 42 majors and 48 minors in the liberal arts, sciences, business, and professional studies; as well as master’s and continuing education degrees and professional certificate programs—each through an educational experience that grounded in the rich Catholic intellectual tradition. The curriculum enables students to gain a depth and breadth of knowledge that leads to professional success and personal fulfillment. Students—whether on the Worcester campus or at the College’s Rome, Italy, campus—become engaged participants in Assumption’s classic liberal arts education, exploring new ideas and making connections across disciplines. To prepare for the workforce, students learn cutting-edge theory and best practices, conduct innovative research, and develop excellent communication and critical-analysis skills. Assumption graduates are also known for their thoughtful citizenship and compassionate service to their community. For more information about Assumption College, please visit

Kimberly Dunbar, Director of Public Affairs, Assumption College @AssumptionNews