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“Religion occupies the highest seat in the human mind, and sees beneath it the civil matters pertaining to the world; it also ascends by means of them... and from that height it surveys what is natural, as from a tower one surveys the plains below.”   —  True Christian Religion 601

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"The Last Judgment and New Church Scholarship: Some Implications for the Future" a paper by Michael H. Hogan with Jane Williams-Hogan, PhD
With the 250th anniversary of the last judgment rapidly approaching in 2007, it seems appropriate to examine what actually happened during the last judgment, what was accomplished by it, and what the scholarly implications are for us today in the New Church. This paper will attempt to do this.

PDF DocumentClick here to download the full paper (PDF)

PowerPoint Presentation of David Radcliff's Talk on Nation Building

MS PowerPoint DocumentClick here to download the PowerPoint presentation (PPT)

Summary of Dr. Greg Rose's Talk on Nation Building by Dan Synnestvedt
Dr. Rose (speaking as a citizen of the United States not as an official representative of the United States Air Force) based his talk on three aspects of nation building: unity, security, and economy. As a phrase, "nation building" was popular in the 1950s and 1960s, but then fell out of favor. Now, due to terrorist attacks sponsored by failed states and the American military intervention in Afghanistan and Iraq, the phrase has returned.

PDF DocumentClick here to download the full text of Dan Synnestvedt's summary (PDF)

Donald C. Fitzpatick's Talk on Nation Building in The Early American Republic
The idea for this program grew out of reactions to the seemingly optimistic talk in the media earlier this year about nation building in Afghanistan and Iraq. One of those reactions was curiosity about what it took to build our own nation after the War for Independence. Knowing that might help put some of the current talk into perspective. So we begin with a brief look at a subject that whole books have been written about.

PDF DocumentClick here to download the full text of Donald Fitzpatrick's talk (PDF)

"Freedom and Responsibility" : A Chapel Talk by Rev. Walter E. Orthwein
"Proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof." (Lev. 25.10)

It is most appropriate that this verse from Leviticus should be inscribed on the Liberty Bell, for as the Lord says in the Gospel of John, it is His Word that makes people free. He did not just say "the truth shall make you free," but "If you abide in My Word . . . you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." (John 8.31-32)

PDF DocumentClick here to download the full text Rev. Orthwein's chapel talk (PDF)

"Valentine's Day Redefined?" : by Dan A. Synnestvedt
In several countries of the world, one day a year is set aside for the celebration of romantic love and marriage. It is generally known as "Valentine's Day." In the United States, Valentine's Day is an occasion for elementary school children to exchange innocent greeting cards and candy hearts with messages written on them like "Be my valentine". Men buy flowers, give jewelry, and pay special attention to their spouse, fiancÚ, or girl friend.

PDF DocumentClick here to download Dan Synnestvedt's full paper (PDF)

"Religion and Liberty: The Founders' Legacy" : A Paper by Michael H. Hogan
This paper concerns the relationship between religion and liberty as it was understood by the Founders of the American Republic. The paper will also discuss the relevance of those concepts to the current cultural environment. In order to do these things appropriately, it will be necessary to present a brief description of the political structures and values of the British/American world at the time of the Revolution. Following this will be a presentation of the Founders thinking on these issues and a discussion of what made their views so revolutionary. This discussion will be extended to include passages from the Writings of the New Church that have a direct bearing on these topics. The final section of the paper will be devoted to an examination of what could be regarded as a crisis in our present political dialogue and suggestions will be made about how a return to the Legacy of the Founders could help us to over come it.

PDF DocumentClick here to download Michael Hogan's full paper (PDF)

"Toward a New Church Philosophy of Law" : A Speech by Eli Echols
It might occur to the reader that drawing principles from the Word can't be philosophy, but must be theology. Swedenborg explained his entire theology in two principles: "That God is one, and that there is a conjunction of charity and faith." In some of his letters he also referred to the work True Christian Religion as the complete theology of the New Church. Unquestionably, everything in the Word is theological — it is all an extension of the two first principles that Swedenborg identified. When the Lord in His Word expands on these two principles, that is theology. When humans do so, that is philosophy.

PDF DocumentClick here to download the full text of Eli Echols' speech (PDF)