Hope in Times of Ethical Dilemmas

(A Collaboration with Providence Renewal Centre)

In Canada today, we face many complex issues related to the ethics of living and dying. These issues raise questions for individuals and society related to suffering, empathy, choice, care, and decision making. How do we, as people of faith, navigate these sensitive issues that push our emotional buttons? Where do we find hope? How do we maintain hope?



Public Lecture with Peter Stockland

Dr. L.P. Mousseau Ethics Lecture Series

Hope’s Notes: Why We Must Be Not Afraid

As a newbie Edmonton Sun reporter, Peter Stockland interviewed a young but already hard-bitten prostitute on Boyle Street who finally said: "Don't you think I'm ashamed of what I do?" Even in the despair her question otherwise signalled, he heard a hopeful affirmation that the heart always knows what it means to be truly human. This year, interviewing Edmontonians responding to the Fort McMurray catastrophe, he encountered a Catholic woman who spontaneously organized an aid drive. "I've always admired first responders, and now I'm a first responder to the Holy Spirit," she said. Her words were the essence of hope in one sentence. But how do we hear hope amid the ideological thunder crashing and media banshees wailing around us? The talk will offer a listener's field guide for facing the culture hopefully.


Lecture with Margaret Somerville

Are “Progressive Values” a Response to a Loss of Hope?
Euthanasia as a Case Study.

What are “progressive values”? How do they contrast and conflict with conservative or traditional values? Margaret Somerville says it is necessary to understand “progressive values” and the strategies used to promote and normalize them if we are to prevent their becoming our shared foundational societal values. Taking euthanasia as an example, she will show how this can happen and argue that eliciting hope can be an important counterweight.



Stockland/Somerville Dialogue


Biographies

Peter Stockland

began his journalism career in B.C. in the late 1970s. He worked in Medicine Hat, Edmonton, Calgary, Ottawa, Quebec City and Montreal, where he was editor-in-chief of The Gazette newspaper. He was vice-president of English language publications for Reader’s Digest Canada. He now works with the think tank Cardus on its Faith in Canada 150 project, is publisher of Convivium magazine, and a columnist for the Catholic Register. He is the author of the short story collection “If Only” and a book of photo essays on the lives of older people in Montreal.

Margaret Somerville

launched the McGill Centre for Medicine, Ethics and Law in 1986. She was the first woman appointed to a professional chair in the Faculty of Law at McGill University. This fall, after 40 years with McGill, she accepted an appointment to the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Notre Dame in Sydney, Australia to develop a specialization in bioethics in their new MD program.