CSLR is a thought leader dedicated to producing innovative scholarship, facilitating challenging conversations, convening the best minds, and training the next generation of academics, lawyers, and religious leaders to advance the global conversation on law and religion. The mission of the Center for the Study of Law and Religion is to produce and promote path-breaking scholarship, teaching, and public programs on the interaction of law and religion around the world. The vision of the Center for the Study of Law and Religion is to be a thought leader dedicated to producing innovative scholarship, facilitating challenging conversations, convening the best minds, and training the next generation of academics, lawyers, and religious leaders to advance the global conversation on law and religion.
Howard Lesnick Passes Away at 88
Howard Lesnick, a prominent law and religion scholar, passed away on April 19, 2020. Lesnick was the Jefferson B. Fordham Professor of Law Emeritus at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. Along with many articles on ethical responsibility in law, religion and morality, and moral education, Howard Lesnick published Religion in Legal Thought and Practice, The Moral Stake in Education: Contested Premises and Practices (with J.F. Goodman), and Listening for God: Religion and Moral Discernment, which asks where moral imperatives come from, and how the answers found in religion and in law affect one another.
He worked to develop methods by which students, teachers, and practitioners could integrate their work with their aspirations and values, work recognized by an AALS Award for outstanding contributions to public service. Howard was also a co-founder of CUNY Law School. Over the course of his career, Howard Lesnick served as a member of the board of directors of the Center for Law and Human Values and Philadelphia Community Legal Services, on the advisory board for the Journal of Law and Religion, and as visiting fellow at the Center for Law and Social Policy.
Lesnick did much to advance the scope of law and religion. A mentor to five and a half decades of lawyers and law professors, his influence will shine bright into the future. He will be greatly missed.
Regarding the COVID-19 Pandemic
Although the present circumstances have impacted our Center’s work in many ways, we are undeterred in the pursuit of our mission to produce path-breaking scholarship, teaching, and public programs on the interaction of law and religion around the world. During these challenging times, we are redoubling our efforts to develop new forms and forums of digital scholarship in the field of law and religion. Our new online publication, Canopy Forum, is growing rapidly and delivering expert analysis to thousands of readers in more than sixty countries – including new and forthcoming articles about the intersections of law, religion, and public health. Our flagship Journal of Law and Religion has just published a new issue with articles and essays by leading scholars. Our faculty and fellows are creating new models of online teaching and research.
We thank our students, colleagues, and collaborators for their flexibility, compassion, and resolve in the face of this public health crisis. And we send our prayers and best wishes to all those whose lives and livelihoods are affected by the coronavirus.
CSLR Awarded Grant for Law & Ministry
Canopy Forum releases February series on Law and Forgiveness
Each month Canopy Forum publishes thematic series addressing issues at the intersection of law and religion from a range of perspectives. These series explore current concerns through a series of essays published over the course of several days or weeks, and aim to spark further conversations among our readers.
This past February, Canopy Forum explored the intersection of law and forgiveness in American law from a variety of religious perspectives. Nathan Chapman and Robert Fastiggi offer two distinct perspectives on the role forgiveness plays in Christian theology and jurisprudence. Hassan Shahawy discusses how concerns for mercy and forgiveness have contributed to Islamic law’s preference for mercy and reconciliation between disputing parties, rather than the strict enforcement of legal norms. Finally, Michael Broyde and Samuel Levine offer two Jewish law perspectives on the jurisprudence of forgiveness: Levine focuses on the theology of teshuva (repentance), and Broyde emphasizes Jewish law’s concern for holding dangerous wrongdoers accountable for their harmful conduct.
CSLR Welcomes Eric Wang
The Center for the Study of Law and Religion at Emory University is proud to welcome the latest Woodruff Fellow and JD/MTS joint degree student, Mr. Eric Wang. A summa cum laude graduate from Princeton University, Eric is currently pursuing a Master of Theological Studies degree at Candler School of Theology. He will join CSLR and the Law School in the fall to pursue his JD.
Video Spotlight: Public Health and the Jewish Tradition
Michael J. Broyde sat down on March 18, 2020 to discuss public health and the Jewish tradition in the midst of the unfolding COVID-19 pandemic. Among other things, he discusses the relationship between public health experts and religious authorities, the difference between one's duties to self and community, and what the Jewish tradition can offer in times of public health emergencies.
Alonzo McDonald Passes Away at 91
Alonzo McDonald 48C, a longtime friend and generous benefactor of Emory’s Center for the Study of Law and Religion (CSLR) has passed away, on Nov. 21, 2019. He was 91. “The world has lost one of its great leaders of church, state, society, and economy,” Witte said. “We join his extended family and global network of friends both in mourning Al McDonald’s death and in celebrating his remarkable life of faith and works. We will sorely miss his deep wisdom, generosity, tenacity, discipline, and integrity – and his incisive and insightful questions at our conferences. The saints in heaven have just met their match.”