The Aquinas Institute for Catholic Thought is thrilled to announce our 9th annual "Great Debate", on Wednesday, February 3rd!

This year, CU's Professor Michael Huemer will square off with Professor James Gaston, of Franciscan University of Steubenville over the question, "Is Religion Good or Bad for Society?"

THE NINTH ANNUAL GREAT DEBATE: Is Religion Good or Bad for Society? The ninth annual Great Debate sponsored by the Aquinas Institute for Catholic Thought (AICT) will be held on Wednesday, February 3, 2016, at 7:30 p.m. on the campus of CU in Math 100. Doors will open at 7:15 p.m. Professor James Gaston from Franciscan University of Steubenville and CU’s Professor Michael Huemer will go head-to-head debating the moral and social good of religion. Tickets will be free for all CU students and a suggested $5 donation for all others. Tickets are available online now at for non-student tickets only (a small processing fee applies for online sales). Non-student tickets will be available and we will distribute student tickets at all weekend Masses January 23-24 and January 30-31. Mark your calendars as tickets are expected to go quickly! For more info, please contact the Student Center at 303- 443-8383, email Scott Powell:

Don't forget to join us for a reception at the St. Thomas Aquinas Student Center (1520 Euclid Ave-see map below) following the debate!

Debater Bios:


Answering, "Good for Society":

Professor James Gaston is the founding director of the Humanities and Catholic Culture Major, and an associate professor of history, at Franciscan University of Steubenville. The HCC Program is a challenging four-year Liberal Arts program inspired in part by the vision of the noted Catholic historian Christopher Dawson. Professor Gaston conceived and teaches all the integral HCC courses as well as Catholic Political Thought, geography and history courses. He holds an MA in history from the State University of New York-College at Cortland, and did his PhD work in 19th and 20th century European intellectual history and historiography at SUNY at Buffalo with a focus on the history and philosophy of geography and the thought of Paul Vidal de la Blache. Before joining the Franciscan University faculty he was lecture program director for the Intercollegiate Studies Institute. He is a member of multiple academic associations, and is the president of the Society of Christian Culture and editor of its publication, The Dawson Newsletter. His honors and awards include an Earhart Foundation Fellowship for doctoral dissertation research, Faculty Teacher of the Year, and Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers. 

Answering, "Bad for Society":

Professor Michael Huemer received his BA from the University of California, Berkeley in 1992 and his PhD in philosophy from Rutgers University in 1998. Since then, he has worked at the University of Colorado, where he earned tenure in 2005. Professor Huemer has taught courses in ethics, social philosophy, logic, epistemology, philosophy of science, and metaphysics. He has written more than fifty academic articles on issues in epistemology, ethics, metaethics, metaphysics, and political philosophy. He has also written three books: Skepticism and the Veil of Perception (2001), Ethical Intuitionism (2005), and The Problem of Political Authority (2013), with another forthcoming. He has written and spoken widely on various philosophical and political issues

Where Should I Park?

Where is the reception afterwards?