Topeka, Kan. – The Washburn University department of philosophy and religious studies is hosting the 40th annual Thomas L. King Lecture 7:30 – 9:30 p.m. Thursday, March 2 in White Concert Hall, located on the Washburn University campus. This year’s speaker, Robyn Faith Walsh, will present “Argumentum ad lunam: Discourse and Competition on the Moon.” The lecture is free and open to the public. Attendees can reserve a spot at

      Walsh will discuss Paul’s letters in the Bible and how they include references to the moon, the stars and the “third heaven.” Walsh’s argument is that Paul envisions Christ-followers ultimately existing among the stars in pneumatic or spiritual form, with a home specifically in the shadow of the moon.

      Walsh will pay tribute to Dr. Barry Crawford, former professor of religious studies at Washburn University, who ran the lecture from its starting point in 1982 until 2017. Crawford died in 2022.

      Walsh is an associate professor of the New Testament and early Christianity at the University of Miami. She earned her doctorate at Brown University in religions of the ancient Mediterranean, with a focus on early Christianity, ancient Judaism and Roman archaeology. Her book, “The Origins of Early Christian Literature: Contextualizing the New Testament within Greco-Roman Literary Culture” was published by Cambridge University Press.

      The Thomas L. King Lecture in Religious Studies was established in 1982 by a gift from the First Congregational Church in Topeka from funds donated in memory of Thomas L. King, an alumnus and benefactor of Washburn University. The series enriches the religious studies program at Washburn by providing a forum for students, faculty and people from the Topeka community to become familiar with the work of leading scholars in the field.

      Past speakers of the lecture include some of the most foundational scholars of religion from the past 50 years like Huston Smith, Jonathan Z. Smith, Jacob Neusner, A.J. Levine, Martin Marty, Paula Fredriksen, Rosemary Radford Reuther, E.P. Sanders, Wendy Doniger and Peter Gomes.


For further information, contact:
Ellie Walker
Public Relations Specialist
Office: 785-670-2154
Cell: 785-224-7921
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