The 2019 Touchstone Conference

FIGHT -or- Flight?

The Benedict & Other Options for Facing the World, the Flesh & the Devil


International University

Deerfield, IL


The Speakers

Allan C. Carlson

Touchstone senior editor Allan C. Carlson earned his Ph.D. in Modern European History from Ohio University. He is the President emeritus and founder of the Howard Center for Family, Religion, and Society in Rockford, Illinois, where he continues to serve as editor of The Family in America. He was also a visiting professor of history at Hillsdale College in Michigan. Dr. Carlson has written extensively on issues of family and society.

Erin Doom

Erin Doom is the director of Eighth Day Institute. The Mission of Eighth Day Institute can be summed up in eight words: "the renewal of culture through faith and learning."

Rod Dreher

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. He has written and edited for the New York Post, The Dallas Morning News, National Review, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Washington Times, and the Baton Rouge Advocate. Rod's commentary has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, The Weekly Standard, among other publications. He has also written The Benedict Option: A Strategy for Christians in a Post-Christian Nation, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, and Crunchy Cons.

Anthony Esolen

Touchstone senior editor Anthony Esolen teaches English at Thomas More College in Merrimack, New Hampshire, and is the author of many books, including Defending Marriage: Twelve Arguments for Sanity (St. Benedict Press), Life Under Compulsion: Ten Ways to Destroy the Humanity of Your Child (ISI Books), Real Music: A Guide to the Timeless Hymns of the Church (Tan, with a CD), and Out of the Ashes: Rebuilding American Culture (Regnery). He has also translated Dante's Divine Comedy (Random House).

Douglas Farrow

Douglas Farrow is Professor of Theology and Christian Thought at McGill University. He pursues a broad range of interdisciplinary interests, anchored in theology, with colleagues here and elsewhere in North America or Europe. SS Paul, Irenaeus, Augustine, Anselm, Aquinas, and John Paul II provide much of the inspiration for these labors, which have a dual focus on classical theological loci and modern problems in the Church or in civil and state institutions. He is the author of Nation of Bastards, Desiring a Better Country, Ascension Theology, and (forthcoming) a commentary on St. Paul's Epistles to the Thessalonians.

Robert P. George

Touchstone senior editor Robert P. George is McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence and Founder and Director of the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions at Princeton University. He is also frequently a Visiting Professor at Harvard Law School, where he has taught civil liberties and philosophy of law, among other subjects. He is author of The Clash of Orthodoxies (2002) and Conscience and Its Enemies (2013), and co-author of Embryo: A Defense of Human Life (2008) and What is Marriage? Man and Woman: A Defense (2012).

S. M. Hutchens

S. M. Hutchens received his Ph.D. from the Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago. He served as a reference librarian for twenty years, retiring in 2015 to become Touchstone's book review editor. He has been the chairman of the board of The Fellowship of St. James and is a senior editor of Touchstone, in which most of his writing appears. He has also published essays and reviews in The New Oxford Review, The Congregationalist, The Southern Baptist Journal of Theology, The Religion and Society Report, The Evangelical Catholic, Sursum Corda, Books and Culture, and The New Atlantis. He and his wife Mary live near Racine, Wisconsin, and have two daughters.

Patrick McCaskey

Patrick McCaskey is a Chicago Bears board member and the Bears' Vice President of Special Projects. He has been working for the Bears since 1974. He is Chairman of Sports Faith International, a non-profit, Chicago-based initiative dedicated to inspiring and transforming our culture through the world of sports. He is the author of five books: Bear with Me: A Family History of George Halas and the Chicago Bears, Sports and Faith: Stories of the Devoted and the Devout, Pillars of the NFL: Coaches Who Have Won Three or More Championships, Sports and Faith: More Stories of the Devoted and the Devout, and Pilgrimage: A Sports & Faith Series Book.

Russell D. Moore

Touchstone senior editor Russell D. Moore is president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention. The ERLC is the moral and public policy entity of the nation's largest Protestant denomination. His latest book, The Storm-Tossed Family: How the Cross Reshapes the Home, was named Christianity Today's 2019 Book of the Year. This prestigious award was also conferred upon Moore's previous book, Onward: Engaging the Culture Without Losing the Gospel, by Christianity Today in 2016. In addition to these titles, he has also written Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families and Churches and Tempted and Tried: Temptation and the Triumph of Christ.

Leah Libresco Sargeant

Leah Libresco Sargeant is a freelance writer, covering religion, statistics, and theater. Her writing has appeared in First Things, America, The American Conservative, Commonweal, The American Interest, and others. She has been a public policy researcher, a news writer for FiveThirtyEight, and a curriculum developer for the Center for Applied Rationality. She is the author of the recently released Building the Benedict Option: A Guide to Gathering Two or Three Together in His Name and Arriving at Amen: Seven Catholic Prayers that Even I Can Offer, which tells the story of how she learned to pray. She has spoken on CNN, at Theology on Taps in multiple countries, and at Chicago Ideas Week.

John Yocum

John Yocum is a professor at Sacred Heart Major Seminary, and a member of the Servants of the Word, a brotherhood of celibate men in the Sword of the Spirit, which is composed of more than 100 communities and groups in around 30 countries, with Eastern and Oriental Orthodox, Catholic, Anglican and Protestant members, and a wide variety of mission groups and outreaches. He works with communities across the region and serves on the executive committee of the international teaching team for the Sword of The Spirit. John has a Doctorate in Theology from The University of Oxford. He has taught Theology at Oxford and at Loyola School of Theology in Manila, and currently teaches at the Catholic Seminary in Detroit, Michigan.




2065 Half Day Road
Deerfield, IL 60015


Adjacent to Trinity—walking distance

LaQuinta Inn & Suites
Special rates available*
2000 Lakeside Dr.
Bannockburn, IL 60015-1237
*Call 847-317-7300 then dial 5 for front desk and then request the special rate for the Touchstone Conference


Marriott Courtyard Lincolnshire

505 Milwaukee Ave., Lincolnshire
2.68 miles from Trinity

Homewood Suites

10 Westminster Way, Lincolnshire
0.6 miles from Trinity

Hampton Inn & Suites Lincolnshire

1400 Milwaukee Ave., Lincolnshire
3.96 miles from Trinity


Transportation info from airport to Trinity (You can explore a range of options at RideGuru):

• Taxis from O'Hare may run between $40 and $49. (18 miles)

• Uber and Lyft operate at O'Hare as well. See below. They can save you money.

• Transportation from Midway is much higher because of the distance (40-45 miles depending on route)

• Standard Services like UberX and Lyft: Meet your driver upstairs on the Departures level. Look for the signs "Rideshare Pickup zone." This also includes UberXL, UberSelect, Lyft Plus, etc.

• Luxury Services like UberBlack and Lyft Lux: Meet your driver downstairs on the Arrivals level. They are with other car and limo services. This also includes UberSUV, Lyft Premier and Lyft Lux SUV.

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