Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Purity of Heart: A Meditation on a Beatitude

Breaking Bread, our semi-annual dinner and evening of spiritual discussion for Notre Dame students and faculty, began only four years ago, but it has already secured a place in the hearts of undergraduates and professors alike. Students often share with us that it is rare to find a warm environment that fosters profound theological discussion with their professors. Especially in an age when many feel like the distance between the two groups is continually widening, Breaking Bread gives students the rare chance of talking with professors outside the classroom. One student said, “It’s nice to have an occasion for us to eat together and talk about what’s really important to our lives.”

At this fall’s Breaking Bread event, on November 13, 2007, Professor Lawrence S. Cunningham, the Rev. John A. O’Brien Professor of Theology in Notre Dame’s Department of Theology, gave a stirring reflection entitled “Purity of Heart: A Meditation on a Beatitude.” Professor Cunningham’s reflection first described what it means to be pure in our society today. He then focused on the way in which purity manifests itself in different aspects of our lives. Professor Cunningham’s reflection gave rise to lively discussions between students and faculty members over a delicious dinner. One student remarked, “It was refreshing to enjoy an evening in an atmosphere where I was encouraged to talk openly about my Christian faith with other students and faculty members.” Another student remarked, “The discussion at my table was very interesting because there were students from so many different majors who had unique reactions to Dr. Cunningham’s talk.”

As part of the evening’s events, each attendee received a copy of Professor Cunningham’s book, A Brief History of Saints.

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