A British Jesuit with broad experience in European and international justice issues as well as grassroots work with the poor will be the University of San Francisco’s Lane Center Summer Scholar-in-Residence this month.
During his time on campus, Jesuit Father Frank Turner will deliver three free public addresses: “Catholic Social Thought and Magisterial Claim to Authority in Ethics” ; “Catholic Social Thought’s Claim to Universal Relevance” on July 18; and “Modes of Christian Ethical Participation in the Global Discourse” on July 25.
As its general director, Fr. Turner led the Jesuit European Office (OCIPE) from 2005 until last year and is currently affiliated with its successor, the Jesuit European Social Center in Brussels, Belgium.
His work has taken him to Iraq, Colombia, Syria, Lebanon and Israel-Palestine, where he has conferred with a range of people, including community leaders, voluntary workers, cardinals, patriarchs and the leaders of several governments.
From 1997 to 2004, Fr. Turner was the assistant general secretary of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales.
“The core of that job was to brief and represent the bishops of the 22 dioceses of England and Wales on matters of international justice: regional issues, such as relations between Israel and the Palestinian territories, or the Church’s advocacy to government about the Western allies’ path to war against Iraq,” Fr. Turner wrote on the website Jesuit Vocations: Britain.
From 1981 to 1986 and 1990 to 1994, the priest did “community-based work in the poorer parts of Liverpool and Manchester” while also teaching part-time at Manchester University, he told National Catholic Reporter.
Past scholars-in-residence have included Mary Jo Bane of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government; Jesuit Father A. E. Orobator, provincial of the Jesuits’ East African Province; Margaret O’Brien Steinfels of Fordham University Center for Religion and Culture; Jesuit Father James Keenan, professor of theological ethics at Boston College; and Jesuit Father Tom Reese, senior fellow at the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University.