Franciscan University to Host Bioethics Conference

STEUBENVILLE, OH - What is it about humans that makes us valuable, that gives us rights? Does the life of an unborn human being have intrinsic value, and if so, why? Do severely demented human beings still have a right to life?

At the upcoming Value of Human Life Conference, the Institute of Bioethics at Franciscan University of Steubenville will seek answers to these questions and more. The Institute's fall conference will be held Friday, October 23, to Sunday, October 25. Four well-known experts in bioethics will speak.

Dr. Francis Beckwith,
professor of philosophy and church-state studies at Baylor University, is a noted writer on abortion. His books include Defending Life: A Moral and Legal Case Against Abortion Choice and Politically Correct Death: Answering the Arguments for Abortion Rights.

Dr. Gerard Bradley,  professor of law at the University of Notre Dame, is known for his work in legal, religious, and related constitutional issues. His most recent book, Essays on Law and Morality, will be published in October.

Dr. John Keown, professor of Christian ethics at Georgetown University, is frequently quoted by courts due to his research on euthanasia. His writings include Euthanasia, Ethics and Public Policy: An Argument Against Legislation.

Dr. Patrick Lee (pictured above), who holds the John N. and Jamie D. McAleer Chair in Bioethics at Franciscan University, serves as the director of the Institute of Bioethics. His most recent book, co-authored with Robert P. George, is Body-Self Dualism in Contemporary Ethics and Politics.

Lee says that at least 20 papers from other ethicists and experts will also be delivered during the conference, and that discussions will likely address health care reform as well.

The Value of Human Life Conference will be the fourth conference sponsored by the Institute of Bioethics since its founding in 2007. The institute seeks to engage the modern culture and present the truth of the human person, following the call of Pope John Paul II in Evangelium Vitae for universities to provide the research, discussion, and articulation of arguments that stand up for and spread the culture of life.

The conference registration fee is $130. A three-day meal plan is also available for $75. The conference fee is waived for Franciscan University students. For more information or to register for the conference, call 1-800-437-8368 or visit


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