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  • Aquinas and King Seminar

Aquinas and King Seminar

  • Fri, February 25, 2022
  • 9:00 AM - 4:30 PM (EST)
  • Franciscan University of Steubenville


Aquinas and King:  A Discourse on Civil Disobedience

   Date: February 25, 2022 – 9 am-4:30 pm

   PACLE Approved 4.0 Substantive, 2.0 Ethics,

   Ohio CLE, pending approval

   WV CLE Approved Total Attendance Credits 7.80; Legal Ethics Credits 2.00:

Those familiar with the works of St. Thomas Aquinas are forever amazed at the prophetic relevance of the Angelic Doctor.  St. Thomas has an answer for just about everything, including civil disobedience.  During the tumult of the 1960s, Martin Luther King, Jr. espoused a philosophy of non-violent civil disobedience to challenge the inequalities of his day.  King's philosophies are rooted in the Thomist theory that human law is unjust if it conflicts with a higher law and that resistance to unjust human law should be non-violent in design.

This intellectually stimulating seminar will explore the parallels between Thomas' time-tested teachings and King’s adherence to such teachings throughout the civil rights movement.  Both King and Aquinas chart a path that blends faith and reason, human and divine law, as well as a form of non-violent disobedience that resists injustice 

The course shall be a one-day event and includes a continental breakfast and light lunch and be held on Franciscan’s beautiful campus. A summary of course coverage includes:

The Nature of Law According to St. Thomas Aquinas

The Nature of Law According to Martin Luther King, Jr.

Moral, Ethical and Religious Foundations of Common Law

Defining Civil Disobedience

Civil Disobedience and the Christian Conscience

The Principle of Non-Recognition

The Compatibility of Aquinas and King


Time Schedule

9:00 – 9:15       Welcome and Introduction

9:15 – 10:00    The Nature of Law According to St. Thomas

10:00 – 10:45  The Nature of Law According to King

10:45 – 11:30   Justice or Injustice in Law

11:30 – 12:00   The Method of Civil Disobedience: Non-Violence

12:00 – 12:30    Civil Disobedience and the Christian Philosophy

12:30 – 1:00     Lunch Break

1:00 – 2:00      Compatibility of Non-Violence & Christian Tradition

2:00 – 3:15       The Principle of Non-Recognition

3:15 – 4:15       The Compatibility of Aquinas and King

4:15 – 4:30       Summary and Evaluation


Cost & Registration

To register for the 6-hour day course go to

            franciscan.edu/law-ethics

The price is $149, which includes light breakfast and lunch. To pay write a check to the Center for Criminal Justice, Law, and Ethics and send to:

            Franciscan University

            St. Joseph Center – Room 115

            Steubenville, OH 43952-1792


Email: CCJLE@franciscan.edu




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