Groenhout named newest Worldview Lecturer

GroenhoutHealth care issues dominate current news headlines: health care reform is one of the main tenets of the Obama administration; loss of health care is one of the key issues resulting from the economic downslide; morality issues surround the recent birth of octuplets by in vitro fertilization; end-of-life choices are often fervently battled in the courts.

Supporting a Calvin lecturer to speak about health care from a Christian perspective seems to fit well into the national and, in fact, global conversation that is taking place.

Calvin philosophy professor Ruth Groenhout will fill the role of Calvin Worldview Lecturer 2009–2010, focusing on health care issues—specifically care and justice in medicine.

The recent author of Bioethics: A Reformed Look at Life and Death Choices (Faith Alive, 2009), Groenhout has spent 16 years researching medical ethics.

Her new book reflects a biblical perspective on issues such as abortion, assisted reproduction, euthanasia, stem cell research and genetic manipulation. It also encourages a compassionate Christian response to global health crises.

“I have been looking at health care for years,” said Groenhout. “It can’t be avoided because everybody needs health care in some kind of system. There are constant issues involving health care, and understanding how we think about public goods and what we should provide relate to how we understand what it is to be human.”

Groenhout will begin her travels this fall, addressing the paradox that the more we do for some, the fewer resources we have to care for others.

“It’s a hot topic on university campuses,” said Janel Curry, Calvin dean for research and scholarship, “and a subject that Ruth can speak about from a Christian perspective with a lot of credibility.”

Groenhout is looking forward to the challenge.

“We get used to the idea that we have Christian intellectuals around us all the time,” said Groenhout. “We take that for granted around here. This is an opportunity to spread the wealth.”

Faith Matters: Lectureship shares Calvin’s approach to Christian scholarship