John Paul II Student Discussion Group

The group originated at the Princeton University Catholic ministry in 2008.Organized by Dr. Marzenna James and Dr. Elżbieta Napierała, it is an opportunity to engage in a discussion of encyclicals focused on the relationship between faith and reason, and the role of intellectual inquiry in the life of faith.

The group meets at 4:30 pm on the first Saturday of each month of the academic year in the St. Paul Spiritual Center (downstairs) of St. Paul Church. Everyone interested in academic discussion is welcome to join.

2017-2018 Academic Year

October 7:

Cardinal Robert Sarah, God or Nothing, 2015 (available on; please focus on chapter 9 (The Joy of Gospel According to Pope Francis), skim the rest of the book.

December 2:

The encyclical letter by Pope John Paul II, Redemptor Hominis, 1979: available at the Vatican website or, in the pfd form, from the Catholic Society

February 3:

The encyclical letter by Pope John Paul II, Laborem Exercens, 1981; available at the Vatican website or from Discussant: Dr. Marzenna James, lecturer at Princeton University, author of a book chapter on Laborem Excercens (in Giovanni Francesco Calabrese et. al., edts., La Chiesa a servizio dell’uomo e della società tra la guerra e la pace. Aracne editrice:2017).

April 7:

George Weigel, Lessons in Hope, 2017 (expected on starting in September 2017)


Dr. Marzenna James
Lecturer in Public and International Affairs
Department of Politics and Woodrow Wilson School
Princeton University