The School of Religion as well as its Humanities Program and centers host a variety of events that include featured speakers, panels and lectures. Find below videos of recent events and use the links to the right to view past events.
When Memory Comes
Saturday, March 25, 2023
Dr. Sigve Tonstad interviewed Dr. Saul Friedländer at Loma Linda University.
About Professor Friedländer:
Saul Friedländer was born in Prague in 1932, the only child of Elli and Jan Friedländer, German-speaking Jews in what was then Czechoslovakia. The family fled to France when he was six years old to escape Nazi rule. In 1942, the parents felt they had no choice but to turn him over to the care of a French monastery in Montluçon, France, authorizing the caregivers to baptize him, give him a new name, and with it a new identity. When they sought access to Switzerland in October 1942, they were captured and soon thereafter sent to Auschwitz where both were murdered upon arrival. A letter written by the parents and addressed to Saul’s French “godmother” and go-between was thrown from the train headed for Auschwitz on October 5, 1942 and retrieved.
Madame, I am writing you this in the train that is taking us to Germany. And then this: Don’t abandon the little one! The letter was signed Elli and Jan Friedländer.
After the war, Friedländer arduously recaptured his Jewish identity. He went to Israel, served in its army, and had important government posts. He subsequently studied history in Geneva, earning a PhD at age thirty-one from the Graduate Institute of International Studies, where he also taught until 1988. His career as a history professor includes Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Geneva, and, from 1988, the University of California at Los Angeles, where he is now Emeritus Professor. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Orna.
Friedländer is the recipient of many prestigious awards, some of which are mentioned here: The Andreas Gryphius Award for Literature (1981); The Israel Prize for History (1983); National Jewish Book Award (1997); The Shazar Prize of the Israel Historical Association and The Geschwister-Scholl-Preis (1998); The MacArthur Fellowship (1999); Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2000); Peace Prize of the German Book Trade (2007); Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction (2008); Dan David Prize (2014); the first Ludwig Landmann Prize (2021); The Balzan Prize (2021). In 2019, Friedländer addressed the German Bundestag on Remembrance Day for the victims of National Socialism.
Among widely acclaimed books are Prelude to downfall: Hitler and the United States 1939–1941 (London: Chatto & Windus, 1967); Kurt Gerstein: The Ambiguity of Good (New York: Knopf, 1969); When Memory Comes (New York: Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 1979); Memory, History, and the Extermination of the Jews of Europe (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1993); Nazi Germany and the Jews: The Years of Persecution, 1933–1939 (New York: HarperCollins, 1997); Nazi Germany and the Jews: The Years of Extermination 1939-1945 (HarperCollins, 2007); Where Memory Leads: My Life (New York: Other Press, 2016).
Judaism at Loma Linda University
Saturday, October 29, 2022
Judaism is a living witness to the rich heritage of God’s mighty actions over millennia for Israel and the world. This presentation shared how Judaism and people of the Jewish faith also play important roles in the mission of Loma Linda University. Presented by the Center for Understanding World Religions.
Wednesday, October 19, 2022
Emily Merwin shared poems from a collection titled 'Evolution of a Dream-Stories of Becoming.' Presented by the Humanities Program.
Wednesday, May 11, 2022
Elaine Nguyen shared poems from a collection titled 'Brushstrokes on Being.' Presented by the Humanities Program.
Whole Person Care Grand Rounds: Hinduism and Healthcare
Monday, March 7, 2022
Sponsored by the Center for Whole Person Care in collaboration with the Center for Understanding World Religions.
Saturday, March 2, 2022
Michael Orlich shared poems from the ordinary but profound experiences of his life. Presented by the Humanities Program.
Suffering and the World Religions
Sabbath, February 19, 2022
One of the most vivid aspects of human life on earth is the experience of suffering, and that suffering is often experienced in the healthcare context. Patients often seek and find meaning in suffering through their religion. This panel explored how each major world religion addresses the issue of suffering, with a response from a Christian academic who has written the book Suffering and the Search for Meaning. Presented by the Center for Understanding World Religions.
Vaccines and the Faithful: Religious Liberty and the Common Good | Religion & the Law Forum
Sabbath, February 27, 2021
Experts on vaccines, healthcare law, and the First Amendment discussed the safety and efficacy of vaccines, immunization and other public health mandates, and religious rights and responsibilities. Presented by the Humanities Program.
COVID Restrictions on Religious Gatherings: Assessing the Supreme Court’s Ruling | Religion & the Law Forum
Sabbath, December 12, 2020
Four Seventh-day Adventist legal experts discussed state COVID restrictions on religious gatherings, in light of the Supreme Court's decision in Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn v. Cuomo striking down New York state's restrictions. Presented by the Humanities Program.
Poetic Voices: Poems of Hope
Sabbath, November 14, 2020
In this time burdened by pandemic, economic hardship, social isolation, racial injustice, and political strife, poet Romaine Washington shared a voice of hope in the face of struggle. Presented by the Humanities Program.
Fulton v. Philadelphia: Faith-Based Adoption and Same-Sex Parents | Religion & the Law Forum
Sabbath, October 31, 2020
Supreme Court advocates discussed a major free exercise and LGBTQ rights case to be argued in November. Participants included Jennifer Pizer, Legal & Policy Director at Lambda Legal, and Todd McFarland, Associate General Counsel at General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. Presented by the Humanities Program.
Retirement Celebration Vespers
Sabbath, September 26, 2020
Honoring the distinguished legacies of faculty retirees Drs. David Larson, Richard Rice and James Walters.
Dr. David Larson received his bachelor’s degree from Pacific Union College and went on to complete a Doctor of Ministry (1973) as well as a PhD (1983) at the Claremont School of Theology. In 1974, Dr. Larson joined the LLU Faculty of Religion and continually taught ethics courses to students across all eight schools on campus. His areas of expertise include medical ethics, sexual ethics, philosophical ethics, and theological ethics. In 1983, Dr. Larson was especially gratified to be part of the team that established the Center for Christian Bioethics on the LLU campus. He was also instrumental in gaining approval to begin offering the MA in Bioethics degree at LLU in the early 1990’s. He has served as Director of the Center for Christian Bioethics. He holds memberships in the Adventist Society for Religious Studies, the American Academy of Religion, the American Society for Bioethics and the Humanities, the Society of Biblical Literature, and the Society of Christian Ethics. Dr. Larson recently edited and published a book on Jack W. Provonsha entitled, Making the Whole Person Whole: Papers and Presentations on Religion, Ethics, and Medicine. Dr. Larson is married to Bronwyn Larson.
Dr. Richard Rice earned his Master of Divinity degree from the Andrews University Theological Seminary. He received both his master’s and PhD degrees from the University of Chicago Divinity School. He first joined Loma Linda University to teach religion courses in 1974; then, after spending almost 15 years teaching religion at the undergraduate level at La Sierra University, Dr. Rice re-joined the LLU faculty in 1998. One of his popular courses, God and Human Suffering, has influenced the lives of countless LLU graduates. He has written extensively about his work as a teacher. These books include Reign of God: An Introduction to Christian Theology from a Seventh-day Adventist Perspective; Believing, Behaving, Belonging: Finding New Love for the Church; Ministryhealing: Toward a Theology of Wholeness and Witness; and Suffering and the Search for Meaning: Contemporary Responses to the Problem of Pain. His most recent book, The Future of Open Theism: From Antecedents to Opportunities, was published by IVP Academic. Dr. Rice and his wife Gail have a daughter and a son and five grandchildren.
Dr. James Walters completed a dual major of religion and communications at Southern Adventist University in 1968, a Master of Divinity from Andrews University Theological Seminary in 1970, and a PhD from Claremont Graduate University in 1979. He has taught at LLU since 1980. Among his many books are What’s with Free Will? Ethics and Religion after Neuroscience, edited with Philip Clayton; What is a Person? An Ethical Exploration; Choosing Who’s To Live: Ethics and Aging, editor; Facing Limits: Ethics and Health Care for the Elderly, edited with Gerald R. Winslow; War No More? Options in Nuclear Ethics, editor; Bioethics Today: A New Ethical Vision, editor; and Living is Loving: Relationships Matter Most. Two other major projects are his joining David Larson and Jack Provonsha in founding the Center for Christian Bioethics (1983), and co-founding the publication Adventist Today in 1992. For many years, he served as director of the Humanities Program. Dr. Walters and his wife Priscilla have two daughters and five grandchildren.
Missionaries, Politics, and Eschatology: Adventism’s Forgotten History of Resisting Oppression
Sabbath, March 7, 2020
Presentation featuring David Trim, Ph.D., F.R.Hist.S., Director of Archives, Statistics and Research at the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists
Revelation: Paideia Commentaries on the New Testament
Sabbath, February 29, 2020
Book panel featuring Bruce Longenecker, Baylor University; Darian Lockett, Biola University; David Larson, LLU; Respondent: Sigve Tonstad, LLU; Moderator: Bonnie Dwyer
Global Deception: Evidence of the Deceiver’s Lie in Pompei
Friday, February 28, 2020
A walk through Pompeian artifacts based on Bruce Longenecker’s most recent book, In Stone and Story: Early Christianity in the Roman World. Bruce Longenecker, PhD, is Professor of Christian Origins and the Melton Chair of Religion at Baylor University.
What if Jesus Had Never Been Born? How the world would be different
Sabbath, February 22, 2020
Abundant historical evidence suggests that Jesus of Nazareth was the most influential person in human history, far beyond His significance for communities of faith. Jon Paulien, PhD, reviewed the evidence and drew evidence-based conclusions.
The Cross and the First Amendment: Religious Expressions in the Public Square | Religion & the Law Forum
Thursday, February 6, 2020
David Kaloyanides, J.D., a First Amendment attorney, addressed the debate over crosses, the Ten Commandments, and other religious expressions in public spaces. Presented by the Humanities Program.
Poetic Voices: The Body at a Loss
Sabbath, February 1, 2020
Cati Porter presented poems from her recent book, The Body at a Loss. She is the director of Inlandia Institute, a literary nonprofit, as well as the author of eight books and chapbooks. Her poems and essays appear widely in print and online. Presented by the Humanities Program.
Connecting with God? Prayer, Meditation, and the World Religions
Sabbath, December 7, 2019
The presenter was Varun Soni, Dean of Religious Life at University of Southern California, and the response was given by Yi Shen Ma, PhD, Assistant Professor at LLU School of Religion. This was followed by a distinguished panel representing some of the world religions. Presented by the Center for Understanding World Religions.
Poetic Voices: Open to Air
Sabbath, November 2, 2019
David Stone shared free verse poems on nature, memory, and time. As a member of the Inlandia Institute, David contributes columns for the Southern California News Group and acts as assistant poetry editor for the online journal Inlandia: A Literary Journey. David also teaches English at Loma Linda Academy. Presented by the Humanities Program.
Annual Dalton Baldwin Memorial Lecture: Megan Koreman
Sabbath, May 25, 2019
Author Megan Koreman presented on her book, The Escape Line, and John Weidner, SDA rescuer of Jews.
Poetic Voice: Jim McMillan and the Poetry of the Soul in Illness
Sabbath, May 11, 2019
A physician and poet shares his experience as a patient after a recent diagnosis of prostate cancer. He ponders the deep questions of life and explores his journey through his voice in poetry. The poet featured was Dr. Jim McMillan, a nephrologist and Associate Professor at Loma Linda University School of Medicine. Presented by the Humanities Program.
Neither Male Nor Female? Sex and Gender in Law and Religion | Religion & the Law Forum
Thursday, April 18, 2019
Chris Oberg, a Seventh-day Adventist minister, and Stefan Johnson, an LGBTQ rights advocate, discussed the current debates about the legal definition of gender and accompanying rights in American society and the Christian engagement with this debate in the public square. Presented by the Humanities Program.
Borders and Sanctuaries: A Conversation about Immigration | Religion & the Law Forum
Thursday, January 17, 2019
Experts on immigration law and practical and Latinx theology discussed the state of the U.S. immigration laws and enforcement, and Christian engagement with immigration and issues arising from national borders. Participants included Nathaniel B. Walker, representative from National Association of Immigration Judges, and Marlene M. Ferreras, religion professor at HMS Richards Divinity School, La Sierra University. Presented by the Humanities Program.