Named Professorships

Jean Porter

Jean Porter

Rev. John A. O’Brien Professor of Theology

Moral theologians, like Jean Porter, ask some of life’s most difficult questions: What if the “right” answer isn’t always clear? What if I do the right thing begrudgingly? How do I balance compassion with God’s law?

Porters work focuses on the recovery and interpretation of moral reflection that features theories of virtue that reintegrates moral theology back into the wider theological enterprise.

She specializes in Christian ethics and the history and interpretation of the natural law tradition in Catholic ethical reflection, particularly the moral theology of Saint Thomas Aquinas, a 13th century priest whose works have significantly affected modern day theology and philosophy, especially Western thought.

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The O’Brien Professorships were established with a bequest from Rev. John A. O’Brien, a 40-year member of the Notre Dame faculty. A popular Catholic apologist who reached millions of readers, O’Brien was a leader of the Newman Club movement and an early advocate of Church renewal through the Second Vatican Council.