Doru Costache offered a talk on the occasion of the inaugural seminar of Sydney College of Divinity’s Theology Research Network. The title of his talk is ‘Affirming the Goodness of Creation in a Time of Pandemic: Patristic Insights.’
The event took place via Zoom, on 28 May 2020.
Moderator of the session was Professor Neil Ormerod, the initiator of SCD’s TRN. Thirty-three people have been in attendance.
The respondent to the talk was Emily Southwell (ACOM/SCD). A conversation ensued, to which contributed a number of attendees, both verbally and in writing. The views expressed during this exchange brought to the fore, once again, the beauty and the enrichment pertaining to the very different theological traditions (Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Evangelical, Oriental Orthodox) whose representatives attended this session.
The official video recording of the talk:
Here is an audio recording of the talk.
We, modern Christians, are both unrealistic and unreasonable. We expect only good things to happen. But not so in the natural world, as the present pandemic demonstrates. The early Christians were more realistic than this. They knew that the world, while good, is imperfect. They also knew that there is a wild side to it, as to our own nature. As within, so without. They were convinced that only insofar as we tame our inner selves will there be hope for the world to become—in turn and in time—gentler, as happen around the saints. In this paper I consider several witnesses of the ancient Christian wisdom, seeking clues for a realistic appraisal of the natural world.
The official page of the event
Parts of this talk transformed into a blog post
Another related post on the AIOCS blog