22S Reading Group: St. Augustine Against the Academics

Instructor: Victoria Xiao D’22
Five Thursdays: April 7 – May 5
7 – 8pm, On Campus


Can we ever know truth? Do we need to take a stance on what truth is, or should we withhold judgement? Can we withhold judgement? How do we seek understanding and clarification even after we make a faith commitment?

Philosophers (the “Academics”) in the fifth century argued that no wise man can give complete assent to any truth. Against them, St. Augustine sought to establish the rational possibility of the human mind to discover and affirm truth. This is important because if “assent is taken away, so is faith; for without assent nothing can be believed.”

Come join us to learn from St. Augustine’s response to philosophical skeptics and agnostics without discussing any explicitly Christian truths. In this work, St. Augustine have different characters talk to each other in a dynamical dialogue form, making it a joy to follow along.

(Cologne, Germany – Stained Glass in the Dom of Cologne, Germany, depicting Saint Augustine)

Week One – 4/5
Against the Academics, Book I (pp. 13 – 38)

Week Two – 4/12
Against the Academics, Book II (pp. 39 – 66)

Week Three – 4/19
Against the Academics, first half of Book III (pp. 67 – 91)

Week Four – 4/26
Against the Academics, second half of Book III (pp. 91 – 114)

Week Five – 5/3

Physical copies of the book will be provided.

Sign up here. All are welcome!

22S Reading Group: After Catholicity: History of Theology from the Enlightenment to the Present Day

Instructor: Charlie Clark D’11 & TA: TBD
Five Wednesdays: March 30 – April 27
8 – 9pm, Location TBD


This course will provide a brief introduction to some of the major developments in theology after the Protestant Reformation, focusing on the divided Western Church and on the emergence of secularity as an alternative to religious belief.

Week One — 3/30 — The Dawning Secular Age: From Reformation to Enlightenment
Week Two — 4/6 — Theological Liberalism
Week Three — 4/13 — Fundamentalisms
Week Four — 4/20 — Neo-Orthodoxies
Week Five — 4/27 — Postsecularity

All materials will be provided digitally.

Sign up here. All are welcome.

22S Reading Group: The Gospel in Tolstoy – Selections from his Short Stories, Spiritual Writings, and Novels

Instructor: Bruce McKenzie D ’81
Five Wednesdays: March 30 – April 27
8 – 9pm, Online


Week One – 3/30/22
1) The Three Hermits
2) Death of Ivan Ilyich – Selection from the Novella

Week Two – 4/6/22
1) Three Questions: A Story
2) Master and Man: A Selection from the Story
3) What Men Live By: A Story

Week Three – 4/13/22
1) The Empty Drum: A Folk Tale from the Volga Region
2) What Pierre Learned from Platon the Peasant – From War and Peace

Week Four – 4/20/22
1) God Sees the Truth, but Waits: A Story
2) A Spark Neglected Burns Down the House: A Story

Week Five – 4/27/22
1) A Grain as Big as a Hen’s Egg: A Story
2) Ivan the Fool: A Fairy Tale

Sign up here. All are welcome!

22W Reading Group: The Anglican Way

Instructor: Andrea Jenkins D’20

Time and location: Wednesdays 8-9 pm, Jan 12, Jan 19, Jan 26, Feb 2, Feb 9

On campus (TBD)


This reading group aims to give a good overview of Anglicanism, looking at the basic tenants, history, and structure of the Anglican Church. We will partially follow Thomas McKenzie’s book, The Anglican Way, while also referencing the catechism and a few other sources along the way.

Sign up here.

22W Poetry Group, T.S. Eliot, “Four Quartets”

Instructor: Fr. Timothy Danaher (Aquinas House)

Time and location TBD, starting January 2022


After publishing “The Waste Land” and being hailed as one of the greatest modernist poets, T.S. Eliot had a quiet yet dramatic conversion and was baptized an Anglican five years later. He documented this in his work “Four Quartets” after which the world’s most notable contemporary poet simply quit poetry.

We will meet five times. The first will be on Eliot’s biography – from St. Louis to Harvard to London – as well as early selections of his poetry.

Then, each remaining class will focus on each of his “Four Quartets,” as an effort of source criticism, i.e. to look at what outside works made their way into the poems and the poet’s worldview, from the Bhagavad Gita to late medievals like John of the Cross or colleagues like W.B. Yeats. Each class will begin with a listening session with audio from Eliot himself. Books used will be from Thomas Howard, Paul Murray, and others. 

“Four Quartets” is as much a philosophy of poetry itself, as it is a document of the poet’s developing religious worldview. All Christians and all people should both study and enjoy this text, which is difficult to approach alone!

Click here to sign up

All are welcome.

Ongoing Reading Group, Eastern Orthodox study, “Acquiring the Mind of Christ”

Instructor: Prof. Jonathan Thomas Elliott (Geisel School of Medicine)

Every Monday 9 PM – 10 PM since Jan 3, 2022

Baker Library (Berry 367)


– In Person
– Together we will sequentially read through the current book, taking the time to discuss the text and questions or thoughts that arise from it.
– No prior reading necessary
– All are welcome, including Orthodox Christians, individuals inquiring about the Orthodox faith, members of other denominations/faiths, and religiously non-affiliated.
– Hard copies of the book are available from Amazon, Ancient Faith Radio (https://www.ancientfaith.com/), St. Tikhon’s Press (https://stmpress.com/). A few extra copies will be on hand at the meeting as well.

CONTACT: jon.t.elliott@gmail.com

Please sign up here