Medicine and Faithful Responses to Suffering


Pain haunts human experience and frequently leads people to seek help from medical practitioners.  As many as one in four American adults suffers chronic pain.  On one hand, relieving pain seems the most obvious of responsibilities for clinicians.  "To cure sometimes, to relieve often, to comfort always," the saying goes.  On the other hand, pain often seems to defy medical solutions and to bedevil the efforts of both patients and clinicians.  What, then, should we make of pain?  What are traditioned practices of responding wisely to pain?  What role does medicine play in those practices? 
 

Jewish, Christian, and Islamic scriptures and traditions all speak to the experience of pain, why it exists, how it affects an individual and a community, how one might respond faithfully to pain in oneself and in one's neighbor, and what may be hoped for when pain will not go away. The 2019 Conference on Medicine and Religion invites health care practitioners, scholars, religious community leaders, and students to take up these questions about pain by relating them to religious traditions and practices, particularly, but not exclusively, those of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The conference is a forum for exchanging ideas from an array of disciplinary perspectives, from accounts of clinical practices to empirical research to scholarship in the humanities. 

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We invite health care practitioners, scholars, religious community leaders, and students to take up these questions and consider their implications for contemporary medicine.  The conference is a forum for exchanging ideas from an array of disciplinary perspectives, from empirical research to scholarship in the humanities to stories of clinical practice.  The conference encourages participants to address questions associated with this theme by relating the questions to religious traditions and practices, particularly, but not exclusively, those of  Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.


Abstract Submission Guidelines


1. We invite abstracts for 75-minute panel and workshop sessions, 15-minute paper presentations (with 10 minutes discussion), and posters that address issues at the intersection of medicine and religion, including but not limited to the conference theme. We also invite student participation in an essay contest. Although we invite proposals on the full range of topics related to medicine and religion, preference will be given to those that relate to the conference theme. We encourage a diversity of disciplinary approaches, including empirical work in this area. 

  • A panel session should incorporate more than one perspective on a cohesive theme. The perspectives should compare and contrast and build on one another. A moderator should also be designated. The submitted abstract should not exceed 1,200 words.
  • A workshop session should engage a practical topic of interest to conference attendees. The format may include, for example, an extended teaching seminar or a skills development workshop. The submitted abstract should not exceed 1,200 words, and it should justify the appropriateness of the topic, the target audience, the rationale for the proposed format, and the qualifications of the faculty.
  • A paper session should be a structured discussion or lecture based on a paper or a work-in-progress. The work presented may be empirical or theoretical, descriptive or normative. One or more authors may present, but either the first author or the senior author must present. The submitted abstract should not exceed 500 words. If the presentation is based on published material, the material must have been recently published (published after March 1, 2017). The advisory board may accept some proposals in a different format. You will have an opportunity during the submission process to indicate whether you would be willing to present your abstract as a poster.
  • A poster presentation should demonstrate or explain a concept, work of art, or empirical research project. The submitted abstract should not exceed 500 words.
  • Student essay submissions should be full papers of no more than 6,000 words, relevant to the conference theme. The winner will present the paper at a plenary session during the conference and receive complimentary registration, lodging, and travel. An eligible student is defined as one who is actively pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree and has not received a doctoral-level degree (e.g., MD, PhD, JD or equivalent degree). Coauthored papers are eligible only if all authors are students.


2. Presenters are limited to two presentations at the meeting. Presentations might occur at a panel session, a paper session, or a poster session. However, presenters are only allowed one paper presentation. Submitted panel moderators will continue to count as presenting at the meeting. This is done in an effort to increase diversity of presenters and also allow for as many different presenters to participate as possible.


3. When selecting a discipline for your submission, please select just one of the six disciplinary categories: Theology/Philosophy/Ethics; History/Literature; Social Sciences/Law; Empirical Research; Clinical and Pastoral Practice; or Interdisciplinary. Proposals can be submitted in the “Interdisciplinary” category when the work involves scholarship that crosses several academic areas. If your proposal has an interdisciplinary element but the focus of the presentation will not be the interdisciplinary nature of the work, please select another category. Proposals can be submitted in the Empirical Research category if the focus of your presentation will be the empirical study. If your proposal has an empirical component but the focus of your presentation is not the empirical component, please select another category.


4. Each submission will be sent as an anonymous proposal to at least three reviewers in the submission category selected. Peer reviews will be blinded. To ensure the integrity of our review process, please do not include identifying information in your abstract or on any attachments that you submit. Their evaluation will be based on the following:

  • Contribution to existing knowledge: whether innovative or on a cutting-edge topic
  • Significance, importance, and relevance to the field of medicine and religion
  • Quality of the written communication

The final slate of abstracts is subject to approval by the conference advisory board.


5. All submissions are final. Accepted abstracts will be available electronically on the conference website, mobile app, and USB drives distributed to conference attendees. We will not be able to accept changes to an abstract after the submission deadline.


6. Presenters are responsible for all personal expenses associated with their attendance. Presenters are required to register online for the conference by January 29, 2019, and should register for the whole conference or for the one day that the presenter is scheduled to speak. One day registration entitles the presenter to attend all sessions on the day he/she is registered only. Submitting a proposal does not mean you are registered for the conference. A failure to register by the deadline may result in the presentation being removed from the program. In the case of multiple presenters, at least one must register on time.


7. All proposals are due by 11:59:59 pm CST, Thursday, October 18, 2018. Successful applicants will be notified in December 2018. 

Conference theme: Medicine and Faithful Responses to Suffering 

A panel session should incorporate more than one perspective on a  cohesive theme. The perspectives should compare and contrast and build on one another. A moderator should also be designated. 

Each panel session will be allowed 75 minutes, leaving a recommended 15 minutes for Q&A. Presenters, however, are free to divide the allotted time as needed. 

The submitted abstract should not  exceed 1,200 words. So that we might preserve the integrity of the  blinded review process, please do not specify the slate of presenters  and the moderator in the abstract. Please list names only in the text  box provided for that purpose. 

All submissions are final. We will not be able to accept changes to an abstract after the submission deadline.

All proposals are due by 11:59:59 pm CST, Thursday, October 18, 2018. Successful applicants will be notified in December 2018.

If you have any questions, please contact ben.parks@slu.edu

Conference theme: Medicine and Faithful Responses to Suffering 

A workshop session should engage a practical topic of interest to conference attendees. The  format may include, for example, an extended teaching seminar or a  skills development workshop. 

The submitted abstract should not  exceed  1,200 words. The abstract should justify the appropriateness of the  topic, the  target audience, and the rationale for the proposed format. Please also  note the qualifications of the faculty in the abstract, but in order to  preserve the integrity of the blinded review process, please do not  list any names. Please list names only in the separate text box provided  for that purpose. 

All submissions are final. We will not be able to accept changes to an abstract after the submission deadline.

All proposals are due by 11:59:59 pm CST, Thursday, October 18, 2018. Successful applicants will be notified in December 2018.

If you have any questions, please contact ben.parks@slu.edu

Conference theme: Medicine and Faithful Responses to Suffering

A paper session should be a structured discussion or lecture based on a  paper or a work-in-progress. The work presented may be empirical or  theoretical, descriptive or normative. One or more authors may present,  but the first author or the senior author must present.

The submitted abstract should not exceed 500 words. So that we might  preserve the integrity of the blinded review process, please do not list the presenters in the abstract.  Please list names only in the text box provided for that purpose. 

During  the submission process, you will have an opportunity to indicate  whether you would be willing to present your abstract as a poster should  it fail to be included in the final slate of paper presentations.

All submissions are final. We will not be able to accept changes to an abstract after the submission deadline.

All proposals are due by 11:59:59 pm CST, Thursday, October 18, 2018. Successful applicants will be notified in December 2018.

If you have any questions, please contact ben.parks@slu.edu

Conference theme:  Medicine and Faithful Responses to Suffering

A poster presentation should demonstrate or explain a concept, work of  art, or empirical research project. All posters will be displayed  throughout the conference.

All submissions are final. We will not be able to accept changes to an abstract after the submission deadline.

All proposals are due by 11:59:59 pm CST, Thursday, October 18, 2018. Successful applicants will be notified in December 2018.

If you have any questions, please contact ben.parks@slu.edu

Conference theme: Medicine and Faithful Responses to Suffering

1. The essay should be relevant to the conference topic. Well-referenced, scholarly essays will be given preference.

2.  Only one essay submission will be accepted per participant. The paper must not have been accepted for publication by any journal at the time of submission.

3. The essay should not exceed  6,000 words (inclusive of notes and references) and should be double-spaced with 12-point type font and 1-inch margins. All pages must  be numbered. The essay should be uploaded as a .doc or .pdf file.

4.  The first page of the essay should include the essay title, the  author's full name, address, phone number, e-mail address, name of  school, degree program, and year of anticipated graduation. The second  page should include the title but no contact information.

5.  A blinded committee will review eligible essays to select the winner  based on originality, scholarship, composition, and relevance to the  theme of the conference.

6. All proposals are due by 11:59:59 pm CST, Thursday, October 18, 2018. Successful applicants will be notified in December 2018.

If you have any questions, please contact parksbn@slu.edu

2019 Conference on Medicine and Religion