USF Hosts Book Talk with Award-Winning Catholic Author John Gehring

SAN FRANCISCO (Oct. 17, 2016) — The University of San Francisco’s Joan and Ralph Lane Center for Catholic Studies and Social Thought will host a book talk featuring John Gehring, author, journalist, and Catholic program director at the advocacy group Faith in Public Life, on Thursday, October 27 from 4:00-5:00 p.m.

Gehring will discuss his award-winning book, The Francis Effect: A Radical Pope’s Challenge to the American Catholic Church, which examines how this unique papacy is impacting both church and secular politics in the United States. His talk will address issues of Catholic identity, the contemporary landscape of religion and politics as it relates to Catholic voters in the 2016 election, and the way the Pope’s reform agenda is inspired by Ignatian spirituality. The presentation will take place in the faculty/staff dining room (University Center 222) on the USF campus (2130 Fulton Street, at Masonic in San Francisco).

“Pope Francis is reforming and renewing the church in ways that have enormous implications for Catholic identity in the public square, and also for our values debates in American politics and civic discourse,” Gehring said. “I’m honored to dialogue with a university community that understands the importance of spiritual discernment, a faith that does justice and service to the common good. Pope Francis has given all of us much to reflect on as we move forward together.”

“Through his writing, John Gehring provides a context for understanding how Pope Francis challenges people on both sides of the political isle in conversations on issues of faith, culture, and politics,” said Erin Brigham, director of USF’s Lane Canter. “In doing so, he models a way to overcome culture wars and build common ground within the Church. As we progress through a turbulent election year, it is important that we consider how to think through and dialogue about the issues that Pope Francis has made central in his papacy, such as immigration and economic inequality.”

Gehring’s writing and analysis have been featured in the Washington Post, CNN, National Public Radio, America, Commonweal and the National Catholic Reporter. He is a former Associate Director of Media Relations at the US Conference of Catholic Bishops. He holds a masters degree in journalism from Columbia University in New York City, and is an adjunct professor of journalism at American University in Washington, DC.

This event is free and open to the public. For more information, please contact the USF Lane Center at or (415) 422-5200.

About the Lane Center at USF

The Joan and Ralph Lane Center for Catholic Studies and Social Thought at USF advances the scholarship and application of the Catholic intellectual tradition in the Church and society emphasizing social concerns. The Lane Center sponsors academic programs, research, and public praxis in order to respond to contemporary Catholic and social issues fashioning a more just and humane world. For more information, please visit the Lane Center website or call (415) 422-5200.

About USF

The University of San Francisco is located in the heart of one of the world’s most innovative and diverse cities, and is home to a vibrant academic community of students and faculty who achieve excellence in their fields. Its diverse student body enjoys direct access to faculty, small classes, and outstanding opportunities in the city itself. USF is San Francisco’s first university, and its Jesuit Catholic mission helps ignite a student’s passion for social justice and a desire to “Change the World from Here.” For more information, visit