Video: Theologian Ulrich L. Lehner on questions of faith in the early modern Church

Author: Todd Boruff

“Early modernity has a variety of answers that might surprise contemporaries,” said Ulrich Lehner, the William K. Warren Professor of Theology at the University of Notre Dame.

Lehner’s work focuses on Christianity during the early modern period, around 1500 to 1800 A.D. He is currently exploring the daily life and culture of Catholics during this period, including how they worshipped and what they believed. He is particularly interested in questions that also apply to the Church today.

“Can I be a Catholic and be part of the modern world? Can I reconcile the sciences, history, and my political worldviews with my Catholic faith? Those are questions that early moderns struggled with, so we don't have to reinvent the wheel every century or every generation,” he said.

Lehner finds that his research goals align well with the pursuit of truth that is central to Notre Dame’s mission.

“The ability to pursue truth with so many stellar colleagues from all different disciplines, but also from different worldviews and persuasions, is the really attractive thing about Notre Dame,” he said. “It makes you a different person and it gives you a lot of positive reinforcement for your life as a scholar and as a teacher.”

You can also watch this video on YouTube.

Originally published by Todd Boruff at on September 18, 2020. Republished at on September 28, 2020.