Whitworth Communications

For Immediate Release

April 3, 2008

Leading Religion Historian Martin Marty to Present April 17 Lecture at Whitworth

Renowned scholar of American religion Martin E. Marty will present a lecture, "A Global Local Faith, a Local Global Faith: Christian Possibilities Today," on Thursday, April 17, at 7:30 p.m. in Cowles Auditorium at Whitworth University. Admission is free. For more information, please call (509) 777-3275.

"Martin Marty is one of the leading historians of religion in America," says Dale Soden, Whitworth professor of history and director of the Weyerhaeuser Center for Christian Faith & Learning. "His observations and insights have not only helped inform several generations of scholars but have also shaped the way Christians across the country understand religion. We are privileged to have one of the most revered historians in the country speak at Whitworth."

Marty is the Fairfax M. Cone Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus at the University of Chicago, where he taught chiefly in the divinity school for 35 years and where the Martin Marty Center has since been founded to promote public-religion endeavors. He is an ordained Lutheran pastor who served parishes in the west and northwest suburbs of Chicago for a decade before joining the University of Chicago faculty in 1963.

Marty is the author of more than 50 books, including Righteous Empire, for which he won the National Book Award; the three-volume Modern American Religion; The One and the Many: America's Search for the Common Good; and, with photographer Micah Marty, Places Along the Way, Our Hope for Years to Come, The Promise of Winter, and When True Simplicity Is Gained. In addition, Marty is the author of numerous essays, articles, papers, chapters, and forewords, and is a columnist for the Christian Century, on whose staff he has served since 1956 and in which his "M.E.M.O" column appears.

Along with receiving the National Book Award, Marty is the recipient of the National Humanities Medal, the Medal of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the University of Chicago Alumni Medal, the Distinguished Service Medal of the Association of Theological Schools, and the Order of Lincoln Medallion (Illinois' top honor). Marty has received 75 honorary doctorates.

Marty is past president of the American Academy of Religion, the American Society of Church History, and the American Catholic Historical Association. He has also has served on two U.S. presidential commissions and was director of both the Fundamentalism Project of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Public Religion Project at the University of Chicago. He has served St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn., since 1988 as regent, board chair, interim president in late 2000, and now senior regent. (The Martin Marty Chair at the college is designed to advance its religious program and connections.) He was the founding president of the Park Ridge Center for the Study of Health, Faith, and Ethics and is now the center's George B. Caldwell Senior-Scholar-in-Residence. For more on Martin Marty, please visit www.illuminos.com/mem/memMain.html.

Marty's Whitworth lecture is sponsored by the Lilly Foundation and is presented by the Weyerhaeuser Center for Christian Faith & Learning.

Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private, liberal arts university affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (USA). The university, which has an enrollment of 2,600 students, offers 53 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.


Dale Soden, executive assistant to the president, professor of history, director of the Weyerhaeuser Center for Christian Faith & Learning, Whitworth University, (509) 777-4433 or dsoden@whitworth.edu.

Michelle Seefried, program coordinator for the Weyerhaeuser Center for Christian Faith and Learning, Whitworth University, (509) 777-3275 or mpace@whitworth.edu.

Julie Riddle, public information officer, Whitworth University, (509) 777-3729 or jriddle@whitworth.edu.

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