• 1962-08-09: Letter from Thomas Merton to Shinzo Hamai, Mayor of Hiroshima, Japan

  • Gregory K. Hillis - What Does Thomas Merton Have to Tell Us About Catholic Identity? Presented for the Tuesdays with Merton Series, March 8, 2022.

    Since His Death in 1968, Merton’s Catholic identity has been regularly questioned, both by those who doubt the authenticity of his Catholicism given his commitment to ecumenical and interreligious dialogue and by those who admire Merton because they see him as an aberration who rebelled against his Catholicism. In my presentation, I want to talk about how thoroughly immersed Merton was in his Catholic identity and to explore what we can learn today about what he can teach us about a Catholicism simultaneously rooted in tradition and open to the world and to others. Dr. Gregory K. Hillis is Professor of Theology & Religious Studies at Bellarmine University in Louisville, Ky. His doctoral research was on early Christian theology, with a particular focus on St. Cyril of Alexandria. In the last few years he has turned his attention to the life and writings of Thomas Merton. He teaches a popular undergraduate course on Merton and has delivered lectures around the United States on Merton’s theology. He has written both academic and popular articles on Merton’s life and authored the recent book Man of Dialogue: Thomas Merton’s Catholic Identity (Liturgical Press, 2021).
  • Steven P. Millies - Our Crisis of Authority and Thomas Merton. Presented for the Tuesdays with Merton Series, February 8, 2022.

    The Polarizing Conflicts that divide the Catholic Church and social life are widely recognized but poorly understood. Thomas Merton understood what we face as a crisis of authority that has far-flung implications and whose fullest dimensions have come into view only in decades since he died. We will explore the crisis of authority as we now experience it in 2022, and we will look to Merton for wisdom about how we can resolve the crisis. Steven P. Millies is professor of public theology and director of The Bernardin Center at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago. His most recent book is Good Intentions: A History of Catholic Voters’ Road from Roe to Trump (Liturgical Press, 2018).
  • Rosemary Radford Ruether interviewed by Paul Wilkes, an unused outtake from interviews for Merton, a Film Biography

  • Doug Hertler - Merton, You, and Me: The Reality of Life in the Paschal Mystery. Presented for the Tuesdays with Merton Series, January 11, 2022.

    Surrounded by suffering and death, we believe in redemption and new life. Besieged by every form of war, we hope for peace and the coming of God’s Kingdom. Where is war present in your life? Is it only experienced “out there,” or can it be found “in here” as well? Have you identified an enemy to destroy? Are you sure that enemy is not yourself? Excerpts from Doug’s play “Merton and Me – A Living Trinity” and these words of Thomas Merton will guide our reflection: “Life and death are at war within us. As soon as we are born, we begin at the same time to live and die.” Douglas Hertler (aka Doug Lory) is a professional actor, playwright, retreat leader, and NYC tour guide. He also works at Fordham University School of Law as an actor/educator. His one-man play “Merton and Me – A Living Trinity” debuted in the fall of 2018 for the Corpus Christi Chapter of the ITMS. Doug spent the month of January 2020 living with the Trappist community of Mepkin Abbey as a monastic guest and will be performing his show there in February. He also serves on the board of the American Teilhard Association. His website is www.mertonandme.com.
  • Paul M. Pearson - "I love beer, and, by that very fact, the world": The humor (and humanity) of Thomas Merton. Presented for the Tuesdays with Merton Series, December 14, 2021.

    Over the years many of Thomas Merton’s visitors and friends commented on his sense of humour. With the seriousness of his writings this humour can all too easily be overlooked. This presentation will explore Merton’s sense of humour from his pre-monastic cartoons, through his correspondence, journal entries and recordings, to the stories told by his friends and brothers. Merton’s sense of humor was a way for him to critique the world, humorously warning readers of our propensity to “wear our mitres even to bed” and reminding them of his own need for beer! Paul M. Pearson is Director of the Thomas Merton Center at Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky and Chief of Research for the Merton Legacy Trust. He is Resident Secretary of the International Thomas Merton Society and served as President for the 10th administration. Paul is a founding member of the Thomas Merton Society of Great Britain and Ireland. He edited Seeking Paradise: Thomas Merton and the Shakers, A Meeting of Angels: The Correspondence of Thomas Merton with Edward Deming and Faith Andrews, Thomas Merton on Christian Contemplation and, most recently, Beholding Paradise: The Photographs of Thomas Merton.
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