Founded in 1997 by Catholic Scholars at the University of Chicago, The Lumen Christi Institute brings together thoughtful Catholics and others interested in the Catholic tradition and makes available to them the wisdom of the Catholic spiritual, intellectual, and cultural traditions. Now in its thirteenth year of operation, the Lumen Christi Institute continues to work toward leavening American higher education with future leaders better educated and formed in Catholic faith and thought.
The Institute’s programs aim to complement the secular education of faculty and students by fostering a rich Catholic culture and supporting Catholic intellectual dialogue at colleges and universities. As an academic and scholarly center the Lumen Christi Institute sponsors events that revolve around three core programs, the University Program in Catholic Thought, the Catholic Scholars Program, and the Cultural Forum.
The University Program in Catholic Thought encourages students and faculty at the University of Chicago to more deeply engage the Catholic intellectual and spiritual traditions by hosting visiting fellows and by offering lectures, colloquia, non-credit courses, and other events.
The Catholic Scholars Program develops teams of scholars to generate a renewed Catholic tradition in various fields of study. The initiative is designed to nurture the next generation of Catholic college and university teachers through conferences and other events for Catholic faculty and graduate students from across the United States and internationally.
The Lumen Christi Institute Cultural Forum seeks to engage the church, the academy, and the public as a means of promoting the evangelization of culture called for by Pope John Paul II. Events in this program have included discussions of law and culture, Catholic social thought and the economy, religion and secular culture in Europe, school choice, and Catholic education.