The Jubilee Centre co-hosted a one day conference together with the Aquinas Institute, at Blackfriars Hall, University of Oxford on 20th May, entitled, ‘Healing Friendship: Human and Divine’. The conference explored how human relationships, requiring empathy and trust, can be healing, and become channels of God’s healing friendship.
Conference organisers, Dr. Liz Gulliford of the Jubilee Centre, and Dr. Richard Conrad of The Aquinas Institute, both presented papers at the event. Dr. Gulliford’s paper was titled, ‘Imagining With and Hoping In’, and examined contrasting species of hope in theological, psychotherapeutic and positive psychological discourses. Dr. Conrad presented a paper on, ‘Nature and Grace in the Sacramental Encounter’.
The conference also featured three invited speakers; Professor Michael Pakaluk, of the Catholic University of America, who spoke about ‘Friendship’s Contribution to Psychological Well-Being in Aristotle’, Dr. Andrew Pinsent, Research Director of the Ian Ramsey Centre for Science and Religion, whose topic was ‘Joint Attention and Virtue Infusion, in Nature and Grace’, and Dr. Connie Svob of Columbia University, who presented a paper on ‘Divine Friendship in Times of Depression: Insights from Neuroscience’.
The conference, which was attended by over forty delegates, was hugely successful in stimulating a range of thought-provoking questions from a diverse audience.
You can watch all the presentations from the conference here.
You can also download Dr. Liz Gulliford's presentation slides here.