How to Assess Science Fiction and the Best (or Worst) Possible Worlds

When: Wednesdays, 11/1, 11/8, & 11/15, 5:45pm-7:15pm

Where: Harrison College House


What would the ideal world look like?  What role would technology play in that ideal world?  We will search for the answers to these questions and more through the world of science fiction and short stories.  Together with a faculty moderator, we will explore imaginary worlds of film and literature to better understand the goals and desires of our own.

RSVP to Elizabeth Feeney if you are interested in attending



Food for Thought is a seminar for engaging foundational questions without the stress of grades or papers.  This informal seminar forum setting provides an opportunity to read and discuss some of the most influential and provocative thinkers of the ancient and modern Western Tradition.

Yoga & Catholic Novels:

How to Make Sense of Religion in the Modern World


When: Tuesday, Nov. 14th at 7:00 pm

Where: Penn Newman Center, 3720 Chestnut St

Join Collegium Institute and the Penn Newman Center for a keynote lecture by returning Collegium Faculty Fellow, Prof. Clemens Cavallin on expressions of religion in modern society. Dr. Cavallin will explore these modern expressions of ritual practice and show us what religious significance of contemporary cultural phenomena, including mainstream yoga and Catholic apocalyptic novels.

Please direct any questions to Program Coordinator, Elizabeth Feeney:

Prof. Clemens Cavallin

Dr. Clemens Cavallin is Senior Lecturer and Associate Head of Department for Internationalization at the Department of Literature, History of Ideas, and Religion at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden. He is Visiting Instructor of Religion & STINT Fellow in the Department of Religion at Haverford College, Pennsylvania, during the fall semester 2013. Dr. Cavallin’s research interests are broad and include Hinduism, Ritual theory and Catholic Studies. His thesis The Efficacy of Sacrifice (2002) was within the first field, more precisely focusing on Vedic sacrifices, while his second book, Ritualization and Human Interiority (2013) is within the second field of ritual theory. He most recent work, On the Edge of Infinity, to be published this year, is a biography on Canadian Catholic artist and novelist, Michael D. O’Brien.

Currently, he is directing the research project Religion on Campus: A Study of Views on Religion at Two Indian Universities together with professor Åke Sander. The focus is on the relation between Indian forms of secularity and the academic study of religion.   In 2017, he will begin to work on a new research project called Christian Yoga which will investigate Christian responses to the popular modern forms of yoga.


Homecoming at Penn

A Day of Celebration and Community

When: Saturday, Nov. 4th, various times

Where: Penn Newman Center, 3720 Chestnut St


Collegium Institute and Penn Newman cordially welcome Penn Alumni and families to our Homecoming celebrations on Saturday, November 4th with opportunities to discover anew the Catholic and scholarly community at Penn, both past and present.

Alumni Open House: 10 am

Start your day with a Meet & Greet of Penn Quakers and families over a light breakfast.

Vigil Mass: 5:30 pm | with a Wine + Cheese Reception following at 6:30 pm

Penn students invite alumni to join them for a Sunday Vigil mass at St. Agatha-St. James at 5:30, featuring the Newman student choir, followed by a Wine & Cheese reception with current students and Collegium’s new Theologian-in-Residence.


Any questions can be directed to Elizabeth Feeney (COL 2015):

Collegium Institute for Catholic Thought & Culture

Founded by faculty, alumni, students, and friends of Penn, the Collegium Institute is an independent organization that seeks to enrich academic culture by sharing the intellectual fruits of the Catholic tradition with a mainstream audience, both secular and religious, and by supporting scholarship, teaching, and learning that engages across the disciplines.

The institute’s name, collegium, serves as a reminder that the pursuit of knowledge, which is the principal object of all universities, is a communal enterprise. Its flourishing depends upon its members working together to cultivate certain virtues of mind and character, such as humility, trust, honesty, justice, and the love of truth. By witnessing to these enduring virtues, the Collegium Institute aims to serve contemporary academia and become a vibrant center of learning within it.

Penn Newman Catholic Community

Our mission is to support, challenge, inspire and empower students, faculty and staff to live the Gospel of Jesus Christ on campus. We prepare Catholic leaders for service to the Church and world.

Seeing Reality:

Conversations in Science, Faith, and Philosophy




In June 2017, esteemed scientists across the academic disciplines joined Rev. Fr. Andrew Pinsent (Oxford University & Director of the Ian Ramsey Centre for Science and Religion) in presentations on our place in the universe and the various methodological approaches we may take to answer such a question.  Audio of their lectures can be hear in full on Collegium’s new playlist, Seeing Reality. 

Lecturers include: Rev. Fr. Andrew Pinsent, Prof. Hans Halvorson (Princeton), Prof. Karin Öberg (Harvard), and Prof. Marie George (St. John’s University).


More information about the Magi Project: Religious Belief in the Era of Modern Astrophysics and recent initiatives,

please visit Here.

The Legacy of the Reformation After 500 Years

When: Wednesday, Oct. 25th, 12pm-1pm, with lunch reception to follow

Where: Wolf Auditorium, McNeil Center for Early American Studies

Co-sponsored by the Wolf Humanities Center, the Program for Research on Religion in Urban Civil Society (PRRUCS), Global Medieval Studies, the Department of History, and the McNeil Center for Early American Studies at the University of Pennsylvania.  

To mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, the Collegium Institute presents a keynote lecture by Carlos Eire, the T. Lawrason Riggs Professor of History and Religious Studies at Yale University and author of the recent monograph, Reformations (Yale, 2016). Professor Eire’s lecture will be followed by a comment from Professor Margo Todd, Walter H Annenberg Professor of History at Penn, and conclude with a luncheon reception.


Please RSVP HERE to reserve your seat for the lecture and luncheon.

Please direct any questions to

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