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Kathleen Duffy, SSJ, Ph.D.

Kathleen Duffy, SSJ, Ph.D.

Professor Emerita of Physics
Educational Background: 
  • Ph.D. in Physics, Drexel University, 1979
  • M.S. in Physics, Drexel University, 1977
  • B.S. in Physics, Drexel University, 1975
  • A.B. in Music, Chestnut Hill College, 1971
Courses Taught: 
  • Principles of Physics
  • Science of Music
  • Astronomy
  • Interdisciplinary Honors Courses
    • Art as a Lens for Science and Religion
    • Science and the Sacred
    • Exploring the Invisible: Art, Science and the Spiritual
    • Voyages of Discovery: Literature and Science in the Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries
    • It’s About Time
  • General Physics
  • Astronomy
  • Science of Music
Scholarly Interests: 
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics
  • Nonlinear Dynamics
  • Science and Religion
  • Spirituality of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, SJ

2015 Catholic Book Award from the Catholic Press Association: second place in the category, Faith and Science for Kathleen Duffy, SSJ, Teilhard’s Mysticism: Seeing the Inner Face of Evolution.

Doctor of Humane Letters, Honoris Causa, Iona College, New Rochelle, NY, October 18, 2009.

Inducted into the Hall of Fame for Catholic Witness, St. Hubert High School, 2005.

John Templeton Foundation Quality and Excellence in Teaching Award of $10,000, 1998.

John Templeton Foundation course prize of $10,000 for "ISP 341: Science and the Sacred," named an excellent course in science and religion, 1997.


Professional Activities

  • Director, Institute for Religion and Science at Chestnut Hill College 
  • Director, Interdisciplinary Honors Program 
  • Editor Board of American Teilhard Association and editor of Teilhard Studies, its biannual publication 
  • Board of Cosmos and Creation, Loyola University of Maryland.
Selected Publications: 


  • Kathleen Duffy, SSJ, Teilhard’s Mysticism: Seeing the Inner Face of Evolution Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 2014. Recipient of a 2015 Catholic Book Award from the Catholic Press Association: second place in the category, Faith and Science.
  • Kathleen Duffy, SSJ, Rediscovering Teilhard’s Fire. Philadelphia: St. Joseph University Press, 2010. Book Chapters
  • “Sophia, Catalyst for Creative Union and Divine Love,” Ilia Delio, ed., From Teilhard to Omega: Co-creating an Unfinished Universe Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 2014.
  • “Creative Union and Chaotic Dynamics at the Evolutionary Front,” in Marc A. Pugliese and Gloria L. Schaab, SSJ, eds., Seeking Common Ground: Evaluation and Critique of Joseph Bracken’s Comprehensive Worldview New York: Marquette University Press, 2012.
  • “The Spiritual Power of Matter: Teilhard and the Exercises,” in David L. Fleming, SJ, ed.,Sharing the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius, The Best of the Review 9, St. Louis, MO: Review for Religious, 2008: 256-65.
  • “Evolutionary Landscapes in Teilhard de Chardin,” in Kuruvilla Pandikattu. Together Towards Tomorrow: Interfacing Science and Religion in India. Pune, India: Association of Science, Society and Religion, 2006.
  • “That All May be One,” in Victoria Erickson and Susan A. Farrell, ed. Still Believing After All These Years. New York: Orbis Books, 2005.
  • “Teilhard and Evolution: Faith in the Cosmos, Faith in Person, Faith in the Divine,” in Gabriel Ricci. Faith in Science. Piscataway, NJ: Transaction Publishers, 2005.
  • “The Texture of the Evolutionary Cosmos: Matter and Spirit in Teilhard de Chardin,” in Arthur Fabel and Donald St. John, eds. Teilhard in the 21st Century: The Emerging Spirit of the Earth. New York: Orbis Books, 2003.

Book Reviews

  • Ilia Delio. Christ in Evolution. Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 2008. Reviewed for America, October 13, 2008, reprinted in Teilhard Perspective, Fall 2008.
  • Louis Savary, Teilhard de Chardin: The Divine Milieu Explained reviewed for Teilhard Perspective, Fall 2008, republished in the online magazine, Metanexus Global Spiral.
  • Andree Tiberghien, E. Leonard Jossem, Jorge Barojas. Ed. Connecting Research in Physics Education with Teacher Education. International Commission on Physics Education, 1998. Reviewed for Journal of College Science Teachers, March/April 1999, 360.
  • John Fauvel, Raymond Flood, Michael Shortland, Robin Wilson, ed. Let Newton Be! A New Perspective on His Life and Works. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Reviewed for Journal of College Science Teachers, November 1990, 116.


  • K. Duffy, “Teilhard and the Texture of the Evolutionary Cosmos,” delivered at Metanexus Conference, Science and Religion: Global Perspectives, published in the Metanexus online magazine, October 14, 2005 and at http://homepages.ihug.co.nz/~thegroundoffaith/issues/2006-04/duffy.htm.
  • K. Duffy, “The Spiritual Power of Matter: Evolution and Incarnation in Teilhard’s The Divine Milieu,” delivered at the symposium, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, SJ and Evolution held at Marist College, Poughkeepsie, NY, May 14, 2005 and published in the proceedings and in Science & Theology eNews, June 3, 2005.
  • K. Duffy, “The Cellular Automaton and the Cosmic Tapestry: Wolfram and Teilhard Model the Universe,” Metanexus online magazine and Teilhard Perspectives, Volume 37, No. 2, Fall 2004, republished in Spanish online at http://teilharddechardingrupodeestudio.org/index.php?option=com_content&...
  • K. Duffy, “The Spiritual Power of Matter: Teilhard and the Exercises.” Review for Religious, 63.2, 2004.
  • K. Duffy, “The Evolution of Love in Teilhard de Chardin,” Omega: Indian Journal of Religion and Science, June 2004.
  • K. Duffy, “Religious Responses to an Evolutionary World,” Media Development, 2, 2003.
  • "The Universe Story. Your Story," Proceedings of the Eleventh National Congress of the Religious Formation Conference, 1999; with Margie Thompson, SSJ.
Selected Presentations and Workshops: 
  • “The Universe Story as Formative Story”
  • “Teilhard and the Texture of the Evolutionary Cosmos”
  • “Quantum Mechanics and Chaos Theory for Beginners”
  • “The Spiritual Power of Matter: Teilhard and the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius,”
  • “Letters from a Traveler: Teilhard’s China Years”
  • “Scholarship as a Vocation: Scenes from the Life of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin,”
  • “Global Spirituality”
  • “Celebrating Cosmic Spirituality”
  • “Teilhard’s Mysticism: Seeing the Inner Face of Evolution,”
  • “Quickening the Fire of the Emerging Design”
  • “Engaging Science and Spirituality: Understanding the Journey of the Universe”
  • “Emerging Spirituality in a Chaotic World”
  • “Spirit and Matter: Finding God in the Stuff of Things”
  • “Images of God in Teilhard and Merton”