February 6, 2013
Kelly, S.J., published “Catholic
Perspectives on Sport: From Medieval to Modern Times” (Paulist Press,
2012). In his book, Kelly discusses how Catholics have engaged in play and
sport since the medieval period and how this engagement has been related to
theological and spiritual sensibilities.
As sports are increasingly in
danger of losing the play element, Kelly argues, the earlier acceptance of play
and the understanding of its connection to virtue and spirituality are important
“Christians in the medieval and early modern periods
thought play was important in a virtuous life, because one shouldn't be studying
or working all the time” he said. “Thomas Aquinas, in fact, believed that play
was closely related to spiritual values.”
In a review, social
Csikszentmihalyi wrote, "It would be a great loss if this book were to be
read only by historians of religion, because the clarity, vigor, and profound
knowledge contained in it will inform and fascinate anyone who is interested in
the broader context of mind and society where religion evolves."
video about the book is here.
Fr. Kelly joined the faculty
in 2006. He teaches in the Department
of Theology and Religious Studies in the College of Arts and Sciences as well
as in the School
of Theology and Ministry. His scholarship focuses on sport and theology,
sport as it relates to human development and spirituality, and spirituality,
health, and leisure.
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