How should we understand the connection between Christian faith and American Liberalism? Some say it is a necessarily antagonistic relationship, others that it is a fruitful partnership that has been orchestrated by God himself, and still others that it is a relationship in tension, bearing both good and bad fruit. While this question has been with us since the beginning of the American political experiment, our current cultural season seems especially fraught with difficulty and division regarding how to think about our most important identities, loyalties, and duties.

With this in mind, the Faith and Democracy in America conference on December 6-7, 2018 (sponsored by by the Henry Institute for the Study of Christianity and Politics and by the Acton Institute), will consider this question with the intent of fostering meaningful conversations about what it looks like to do justice to both God and Caesar. 

The conference will feature two plenary speakers: Notre Dame political philosopher and Why Liberalism Failed author Patrick Deneen, and Calvin philosopher James K.A. Smith, author of the Cultural Liturgies Series. Five panels will be included in the event comprised of invited speakers from various perspectives within a specific sector of society, each addressing crucial components of the driving question: Is Christianity compatible with American Liberalism?

The conference registration fee of $50 includes lunch and a reception on Thursday and lunch on Friday. For session locations, see the website.


Please register by Thursday, November 29, 2018.


  • Prince Conference Center at Calvin College
  • 1800 E. Beltline SE
  • Grand Rapids, MI
  • 49546


December 2018
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