From Constantine to Putin?
– The Theological Interpretations of the
Relation between Church, State and Society

One day conference in Lund, 26 April, 2022


“The relation between Church and State is the greatest subject in the history of the West” goes a quote by Swiss theologian Emil Brunner. Not only is it a question in the Western church, it could be added, but rather something all of the Christian church has been concerned with.
This year the Patristic Day at Lund University will look at both early and later interpretations of the relation between church and the rest of society. What does it mean, when it says in John 15:19 “If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own.”? What is at stake in these theological debates? Is it even the same question? Are these debates relevant today?

Students and everyone else interested are invited to participate.

10.15 Welcome

10.30 Andreas Westergren, Docent | Lund University | “The Constantinian Turns: Conflicts about Constantine in Recent Research”

11.00 Simon Schmidt, Ph.D.-student | Lund University | “Eusebius’, Augustine’s and Yoder’s Interpretations of the Constantinian Shift”

11.30 Break

12.00 Katarina Pålsson, Post.doc | Lund University | ”’We are not of this world’ – Jerome about the Ascetic Life in Relation to Church and Society”

12.30 Lunch (can be bought at LUX or SOL building)
14.00 Emil Saggau, Post.doc. | Lund University | “Justinian’s Vision of Empire and Church in Light of the Fifth

Ecumenical Council”
14.30 Bent Flemming Nielsen, Professor Emeritus | University of Copenhagen | “Royal Interference in the Formation

of Denominations during the Reformation – A Case”

15.00 Coffee

15.30 Arne Rasmusson, Professor | University of Gothenburg | “Karl Barth’s Theology of Church, Nation and Peoplehood”

16.00 Davor Džalto, Professor | University College Stockholm | ”Anarchism – Political and Eschatological Perspectives”

16.30 Panel
18.00 Patristic Buffé staff dining room: C212 (open for all; requires separate sign-up on

Price: It is free to participate and does not require a sign-up; except for the evening dinner, which requires a sign-up on and payment at the latest Monday 18th of April.

The event is partially funded by a generous donation from Einar Hansens Forskningsfond.