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The Institute for Policy Research

and Catholic Studies 

The Catholic University of America’s Institute for Policy Research and Catholic Studies (IPR) is a global community of scholars, researchers, and professionals. Our Fellows, scholars, associated professionals and students have been serving the Church, the nation, and the world since our founding in 1974.

New START: Catholic-Evangelical Dialogue on Nuclear Disarmament


Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020

2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. EDT (US)

Zoom Webinar - Register Here

New START (Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty), the last remaining nuclear weapons agreement between the United States and Russia, expires in February 2021 unless both sides agree to a five-year extension.


The treaty, ratified almost a decade ago, limits the number of deployed strategic nuclear weapons to levels far below those of the Cold War. 


With the deadline for renewal just months away, what are the current prospects for New START? How does its renewal fit into the wider ethical and policy debates on nuclear arms control and disarmament? And how can Catholic and Evangelical Protestant communities mobilize in support of the agreement?


Join us for a panel discussion featuring prominent Evangelical and Catholic leaders and scholars, who will explore these timely and important issues.

On August 6 and 9, 1945, two atomic weapons were detonated over the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The bombs shattered the cities, immediately killing upwards of 80,000 people in Hiroshima and 35,000 people in Nagasaki. For months and years afterward, people continued to die from burns, radiation sickness, and other injuries. On a visit to Nagasaki in November 2019, Pope Francis spoke forcefully on the abolition of nuclear weapons, saying “A world of peace, free from nuclear weapons, is the aspiration of millions of men and women everywhere. To make this ideal a reality calls for involvement on the part of all.” This year on the seventy-fifth anniversary of the bombings, prominent Catholics in the United States and Japan are working together in solidarity and friendship to promote a world free of nuclear weapons.


Building on the Holy Father’s appeal, this commemoration recalls in solidarity the tragic devastation wreaked by nuclear warfare. Archbishop Mitsuaki Takami and Bishop David Malloy offer short reflections on the meaning of the bombings today. Archbishop Takami recalls the personal tragedies inflicted on his family, Bishop Malloy speaks to the need for nuclear disarmament, and together they offer prayers for peace. The event is moderated by Dr. Maryann Cusimano Love and incorporates a visual memorial of the destruction in Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

This event is hosted by Georgetown University’s Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs and the Catholic Peacebuilding Network, in partnership with the University of Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, Keough School of Global Affairs; Northwestern University’s Sheil Catholic Center; the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Japan, Japan Catholic Council for Justice and Peace; the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Office of International Justice and Peace; The Catholic University of America Institute for Policy Research and Catholic Studies; the International Federation of Catholic Universities; and Pax Christi International. 


This is one of a series of initiatives of the Project on Revitalizing Catholic Engagement on Nuclear Disarmament.

IPR Fellow Chen Guangcheng has a new article in the Washington Post. "Warning:  Chinese authoritarianism is hazardous to your health."

IPR Fellow and General Manager of Podcasting Matthew Foley discusses blockchain technology and what has been called the "Fourth Industrial Revolution".
IPR St. John Paul II Intern Fellow Raymond Horchos presents his research on church closures.

IPR Podcast

Chen Guangcheng writes: 

The Chinese Communist Party has once again proved that authoritarianism is dangerous — not just for human rights but also for public health. Confronted with the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak, the CCP has instinctively reverted to its familiar tool kit: It immediately staged a large-scale lockdown of people and information at the expense of the public good.  More

IPR Fellow and General Manager of Podcasting Matt Foley hosts the IPR podcast "My Digital Self." Find it here, and on the following podcasting platforms:


Raymond worked as an intern this summer, and his research as an intern was on the effects of parish closings and mergers on the political and social landscape of the Catholic Church in Belgium, Italy, and the United States. 

You can read Raymond's research presentation by clicking here.

Dear Readers, Watchers, and Listeners:


Please note that the views expressed in the podcasts or projects produced by our Fellows are those of the Fellows and the interviewed party, and do not necessarily reflect those of The Catholic University of America, its administration, faculty, or staff.


Furthermore, the posting of podcasts, lectures, interviews, or other materials to the Institute for Policy Research website do not constitute acceptance, approval, or agreement with the views expressed by the Fellow presenting the materials and/or the interviewed party.


These postings are made to further academic discussion and dialogue on the important topics and issues of our time as raised by our Fellows.

A Blessed Recipe for Sound Ecology
by Rev. Eugene Hemrick

As I sat in gridlock, at least 100 cars and busses were behind and in front of me with their engines idling. It had taken me approximately an hour to drive from the U.S. Capitol to the White House, a distance of one mile. I wondered how many barrels of gasoline are wasted daily in similar circumstances.


Years ago, addressing the nation, President Bush said we need to depend less on oil. He should have been more imaginative and said that we need to be more visionary in conserving energy. 


. . .If we are to win the battle of energy efficiency, another major principle must come into play. The more we and our children stretch our imaginative capacities now, the more secure the future of our energy resources will be.


Calling for increased visioning and imagination in the above rings ever truer today for developing a healthy ecosystem. Promoting creativity and pursuing new knowledge contain one of our best recipes for reducing pollution, conserving energy and valuing the earth’s resources. The more we seek new insights, and the deeper questions we raise, the greater the probability of ecological progress. U.S. physicist Robert Hutching once said,  “God pity a one-dream man.” New demands of our ecological age are urging us to dream dreams like never before that expand our imagination and creativity. But is this enough to succeed, or is yet another means needed to truly thrive? The answer is yes to the latter, and the other means of which we speak is sacred realization: a profound consciousness of the Creator responsible for our ecosystem! Allow me to cite two ecological success stories to learn what is implied in and required by this assertion.

Read the full article here

His Eminence Cardinal Berhaneyesus Souraphiel
of Ethiopia Visits Catholic University's Weiner Collection of Ethiopic Manuscripts.  
The collection of more than 600 handmade leather manuscripts is one of the most important collections of Ethiopian religious texts in the United States.

Jeremy Brown, (left) Visiting Assistant Professor, Department of Semitic and Egyptian Languages and Literatures shows one of the manuscripts to Cardinal Souraphiel and Fitsum Arega,(right)  Ethiopian Ambassador to the U.S.

A handmade page of one book, intricately illuminated, is typical of the collection that is stored within CUA’s Institute of Christian Oriental Research (ICOR), a research auxiliary of the Semitics department. 

Cardinal Berhaneyesus Souraphiel travelled from Addis Ababa to Washington, D.C. to meet with  the largest diaspora community of Ethiopians in the U.S.  The Cardinal heads the Peace and Reconciliation Committee in his country, which was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize this year for its efforts to resolve long-standing conflicts with neighboring Eritrea, and for “important reforms that give many citizens hope for a better life and a brighter future.” The Cardinal also visited The Catholic University of America to meet with President Garvey, students in Dr. Cusimano Love's Politics class, and the Curator and staff of the Semitics/ICOR Collections.

Interview:  Sen Nieh of the China Working Group
Tuidang: "Quitting the Party" Gaining Momentum

Sen Nieh, chair and professor, mechanical engineering was interviewed by The Epoch Times about a petition that seeks White House support to break ties with the Chinese communist party.

Read more

Video Dialogues, Episode 1:

Dr. Dennis Nilsen and Dr. Srdja Trifković, Foreign Affairs Editor at the Chronicles magazine, professor of international relations at the University of Banja Luka, and renowned expert on the politics and history of the Balkans. 

Interfaith Group Raises Awareness of Ongoing Genocide and Persecution of Rohingya and Kachin peoples in Myanmar.

IPR Fellow Marshall Breger, an expert in International Law (2nd from the right) meets with an interfaith task force working on the humanitarian crisis in the Rohingya and Kachin populations in Myanmar.  From the left, Joe Murray of First Principles Strategies; U Shwe Maung, fmr. member of the Myanmar Parliament;  Imam Malik Majahid, Chair of the Burma Task Force, USA;  Sut Nau Ndayu, U.S. President of the Kachin National Organization; and Rabbi Michael Safra.   On Thursday, Dec. 13, the U.S. House of Representatives voted 394 to 1, (with 38 not voting) to declare the violence against the Rohingya a genocide, and condemned the arrest of two Reuter's journalists who reported on mass graves in the country. Home
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