See the 2019 Program

The Henry Symposium on Religion and Public Life is held biennially at the Prince Conference Center on the campus of Calvin University in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The purposes of the Symposium are to provide opportunities to share current research, foster personal and professional networks, facilitate joint research endeavors, and learn about research opportunities in the field. Attendance at the Symposium is open to anyone interested in the intersection of religion and public life.

symposium5The three day event includes roundtables and panels on a wide variety of topics. The Symposium also often includes special evening lectures by prominent thinkers and practitioners.

We are currently in the process of rescheduling the next Symposium on Religion and Public Life. Due to pandemic restrictions, we will be unable to host the event as originally scheduled in late April of 2021. When new dates have been determined, this website will be updated.

Tenth Biennial Henry Symposium on Religion and Public Life

April 25-27, 2019

The Paul B. Henry Institute held its tenth biennial Symposium on Religion and Public Life from April 25-27, 2019, at the Prince Conference Center on the campus of Calvin University.


While the Symposium was open to all topics about religion and public life, one track of panels focused on a unifying theme: "Populism or Internationalism? Religious Responses to Globalization." These sessions were videotaped [Session I link; Session II link], as was an additional panel discussion on "Evangelicals and Politics: What Have We Learned?"

Additionally, the Symposium featured the annual Kuyper Lecture, as well as a variation on the Henry Lecture (follow this link to watch a video of the panel), which featured a roundtable discussion on faith, democracy, and journalism led by Michael McCurry (Press Secretary, Clinton administration) and including Elizabeth Dias (New York Times), Emma Green (The Atlantic), Amy Sullivan (author of The Party Faithful), and Ken Woodward (former Newsweek reporter and author of Getting Religion).

A session was dedicated to Michele Margolis' pathbreaking book From Politics to the Pews (see a video of the panel here), among other panels on rights-based religious movements, faith and the Democratic party, the future of religion and conservatism, and much more. The Henry Symposium was preceded by the Kuyper Conference, also held at the Prince Conference Center.

Past Programs

Find topics and speakers from previous symposia: