LCU hosted the Eleventh Annual Lanier Theological Library Lecture which featured Dr. Sharon Dirckx, a renowned speaker, author, and adjunct lecturer at the Oxford Center for Christian Apologetics (OCCA).
Dr. Dirckx received her Ph.D. in brain imaging at the University of Cambridge, and this led to her holding research positions in both the UK and USA. Her passion for apologetics eventually led her back to the United Kingdom to OCCA where she would spend the next fifteen years.
Today, she speaks and lectures on science and theology, ‘mind and soul’, and the problem of evil. Dr. Dirckx has appeared on several BBC programs in the UK including Radio 2 Good Morning Sunday and Radio 4 Beyond Belief. She is also the author of an award-winning book on suffering, entitled, Why?: Looking at God, Evil, and Personal Suffering (2013), as well as a book on human consciousness and identity, entitled, Am I Just My Brain? (2019). More recently, Dr. Dirckx contributed to The Case for Heaven (2021), a book and subsequent documentary by best-selling author Lee Strobel. Her next book on natural disasters is forthcoming (Spring 2023).
Dr. Dirckx’s lecture on the LCU campus, entitled “Neuroscience and Human Identity: Are We Just Our Brains?” added to the rich repertoire of topics that these lectures at LCU have continued to produce. Her time on LCU’s campus, however, brought even more opportunities for students, even beyond the lecture itself, including an appearance in LCU’s daily chapel, a private luncheon with students and faculty, an afternoon lecture specifically for students, and a private dinner which included a Q&A session.
The Lanier Theological Library was founded by nationally distinguished civil trial lawyer Mark Lanier. The Lubbock Native and former LCU student has been widely recognized as one of the top civil attorneys in the nation, but beyond his success as a lawyer, Lanier is also a dedicated Christian and apologist whose passion for his faith wrought the Lanier Theological Library, one of the largest private theological libraries in the world. It is through a longtime partnership with Lanier that LCU continues to bring world-class speakers and theologians to its campus to tackle deep, important topics pertaining to the Christian faith.
"I loved when I got to hear great national speakers—it was a nice bit of exposure that you don't always get in Lubbock," Lanier explained. "So, when LCU gave us a chance to help find some of those people and bring them in, I found it to be a thrilling opportunity."
Dr. Dirckx’s time on LCU’s campus allowed her several opportunities to share the story of her own faith journey, and her journey as a neuroscientist into the field of apologetics with students.
“It’s been absolutely worth making the journey to Lubbock,” she said. “I’ve experienced a warm Texan welcome, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed and loved my time here. Everyone here has been so interested and engaging with the different topics we’ve looked at through the day, and there have been some very interesting questions. Questions of hope, about my journey to faith, about science, and then of course about our brains and mind—it’s all been such a pleasure. I’m grateful to have been here.”
Want to hear more about Dr. Dirckx's presentation? Keep an eye out for the next issue of Reflections!