In addition to consulting with health care systems on issues surrounding mission,
theology, and ethics, my major research foci have included the anointing of the sick,
genetics, gene therapy, human embryonic stem cell research and issues at the end-of-life.
My first co-edited book, Gathered for the Journey: Moral Theology in Catholic Perspective
(Eerdmans 2007, co-editor David M. McCarthy), provides an introduction to Catholic moral
theology. In 2008, the book received third place honors in 'Theology' from the
Catholic Press Association. My second book, On Moral Medicine: Theological Perspectives
on Medical Ethics, 3rd edition (Eerdmans, 2012), is co-edited with Joseph Kotva. In print
for more than two decades, On Moral Medicine remains the definitive anthology for
Christian theological reflection on medical ethics. My most recent book, Caritas in
Communion: Theological Foundations of Catholic Health Care (St. Louis: Catholic Health
Association) reports the fruit of a year-long study as Visiting Scholar for the Catholic
Health Association on the theological foundations of Catholic identity, the principle of
moral cooperation, and for-profit health care. 

My current research involves three projects. The first is the Human Powered Nebulizer
Project (, a global health project designed to address significant
burden of respiratory conditions among the poor in developing contexts. With Lars E.
Olson, Ph.D. (Marquette, Biomedical Engineering), she is exploring the role of community
health workers in the development of appropriate medical technologies, for the treatment
of asthma, COPD, and LRIs, better diagnosis of tuberculosis, and the potential for better
delivery of vaccines. My second project brings to fruition a two-year research project
funded by the Science of Virtue Program of the Arete Foundation at the University of
Chicago examining the cultural constructions of virtue, vice and poverty in contemporary
work on the neurosciences. With Jeffrey P Bishop, M.D., Ph.D. (Director, Center for
Health Care Ethics, St. Louis University) and Andrew A. Michel, M.D. (College of
Medicine, Vanderbilt University), she is completing a book manuscript entitled Chasing
After Virtue: Neuroscience, Economics, and the Biopolitics of Morality (University of
Notre Dame Press). My final project, a scholarly monograph, is entitled Anointing of the
Sick and the Theo-Political Economy of Medicine (Eerdmans). 

I have also been privileged to serve as an advisor to the Catholic Health Association and
to sit on the Board of Directors of the Society of Christian Ethics and the Editorial
Board of the Journal of Moral Theology. From 1995-1998, I served as a member of the
Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee (RAC) at the National Institutes of Health. I have
served as a member of the advisory boards for the Program of Dialogue Between Science,
Religion, and Ethics at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS);
and from 2008-2011, I was a member of the U.S. Catholic-Episcopal Theological
Consultation under the aegis of the USCCB. 



On Moral Medicine: Theological Perspectives in Medical Ethics, 3rd Edition (with Joseph Kotva, Stephen E. Lammers, and Allen Verhey), Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company (2012)

In print for more than two decades, On Moral Medicine remains the definitive anthology for...



Gathered for the Journey: Moral Theology in Catholic Perspective (with David M. McCarthy) (2007)

Gathered for the Journey sets moral reasoning in a theological context of worship and discipleship...




Treatment of asthma exacerbations with the human-powered nebuliser: a randomised parallel-group clinical trial (with Christopher J. Hallberg, Rene Antonio Najarro, Fausto Cea Gill, Clara Villatoro, Ana Celia Diaz de Uriarte, and Lars E. Olson), npj Primary Care Respiratory Medicine (2014)

Aims: The aim of this study was to compare a low-cost, human-powered nebuliser compressor with...



Characterization of a human powered nebulizer compressor for resource poor settings (with Christopher J. Hallberg, Christopher E. Zmudka, William K. Kopesky, and Lars E. Olson), BioMedical Engineering OnLine (2014)

Respiratory disease accounts for three of the ten leading causes of death worldwide. Many of...



The Last Shall Be First: Human Potential in Genetic and Theological Perspectives, Theology and Science (2011)

The notion of “human potential” provides a fruitful window through which to explore the competing...


Contributions to Books


Hauerwas and the Redemption of Bioethics, Unsettling Arguments : A Festschrift on the Occasion of Stanley Hauerwas's 70th Birthday (2010)


“Suffering in Communion With Christ: Sacraments, Dying Faithfully, and End of Life Care, Living Well and Dying Faithfully: Christian Practices for End-of-Life Care (2009)


From the Challenge of Peace to the Gift of Peace: Reading the Consistent Ethic of Life as an Ethic of Peacemaking, The Consistent Ethic of Life: Assessing Its Reception and Relevance (2008)


Love Your Enemies: Toward a Christoform Bioethic, Gathered for the Journey: Moral Theology in Catholic Perspective (2007)


And Power Corrupts…: Theology and the Disciplinary Matrix of Bioethics, Handbook of Bioethics and Religion (2006)

What role should religion play in a religiously pluralistic liberal society? Public bioethics unavoidably raises...


Popular Press

Book Reviews


Review of Helen Watt's "Fertility and Gender", Theological Studies (2012)



Neuroscience, Politics, and the Secularization of Virtue and Vice (with M Therese Lysaught, Jeffrey P. Bishop, and Andrew Michel), University of Notre Dame, Center for Ethics and Culture, Conference on Radical Emancipation: Confronting the Challenge of Secularism (2011)

In his groundbreaking book Theology and Social Theory (1990), John Milbank attends to the role...



Corporeality and the Corporation: The Duty to Participate in Biomedical Research as Biopolitics, Center for Bioethics, University of Minnesota (2011)

Over the past three decades, an enormous transformation has occurred in the political economy of...



Anointing the Sick? Practicing Religion in the Clinical Context, Center for Spirituality, Theology, and Health, Duke University Medical School (2010)

Theologians and Christians cannot be but encouraged by the new focus on spirituality and medicine....



Corporations, CROs and Profit: Ethics in the New Bio-Political Economy of Globalized Biomedical Research, Annual Meeting of the Society of Christian Ethics (2010)

A main catalyst in the emergence of the bioethics was the abuse of human subjects....



Corporations, CROs and Globalized Biomedical Research: Is Belmont Obsolete?, American Academy of Religion (2009)

Christian and Jewish theologians and philosophers were key figures in shaping the normative principles for...