The Bible and Democracy in America

Friday 10/25 4PM, and Saturday 10/26 8:30AM Barrows Auditorium


This symposium, hosted by Wheaton College, will bring together scholars, students, clergy and laypersons to engage in a dynamic, provocative conversation on the role and place of the Bible in American life.

Topics of discussion will include meanings pertaining to the Bible and democracy in America; a review of the Bible’s historical influence on democracy; and an exploration of the diversity of ways Americans give expression to the Christian biblical narrative today. The symposium endeavors to engage and envision the mutual relationship between the Bible and the practices and life of Americans, individuals, and groups during the next 100 years.

Friday's featured speaker will be Dr. Martin E. Marty, Fairfax M. Cone Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus at the University of Chicago Divinity School.

Roundtable discussions on Saturday will include: Dr. Henry Lee Allen, professor of sociology at Wheaton College; Dr. Vincent E. Bacote, associate professor of theology and director of the Center for Applied Christian Ethics at Wheaton College; Dr. Timothy Beal, Florence Harkness Professor of Religion at Case Western Reserve University; Dr. Amy Black, associate professor of political science at Wheaton College; Dr. Catherine Brekus, associate professor of American religious history at the University of Chicago; Lillian Daniel, senior pastor of First Congregational Church of Glen Ellyn, United Church of Christ; Dr. Jennifer Powell McNutt, associate professor of theology and history of Christianity at Wheaton College; and Father George Smiga, pastor of St. Noel Catholic Church and professor at St. Mary Seminary and Graduate School of Theology.

This event takes place in the Billy Graham Center, located at 500 College Avenue in Wheaton. 

ABS President Doug Birdsall, a 1975 graduate of Wheaton College says this about the symposium. “American Bible Society has worked to stimulate conversation about the Bible since its inception in 1816,”This symposium at Wheaton College is meant to inspire this generation to examine how the Bible has shaped our democracy in the past and consider how it continues to contribute to our national discourse, democratic process and society as a whole.”