The Faith and Medicine Conference returned to Atlanta, Georgia in 2023, featuring a strong complement of speakers. Held on February 3rd and 4th at Grace Fellowship of South Forsyth in Cumming, this ongoing annual conference (spearheaded by Dr. Rhett Bergeron) featured Dr. Peter McCullough, MD, MPH as the final speaker for the Friday night session – a well-known figure fighting a courageous uphill battle in an age of medical censorship. Dr. McCullough’s lecture, “Medical Freedom, Personal Responsibility, and Call to Action,” elicited a well-earned spontaneous standing ovation at its conclusion.
Other speakers included Rev. Chris Strevel, Suzy Griswold, Dr. Joel Robbins, DC, ND, Dr. Grant Scarborough, MD, Dr. Lou Priolo, DDiv, Martha Peace, Ginger Taylor, MS, Ricardo Davis, and Martin Selbrede of the Chalcedon Foundation. The after-conference panel discussion sponsored by the Georgia Republican Assembly concerning the “Intersection of Politics, Medicine, and Theology” featured Ricardo Davis, Dr. Heidi Klessig, Martin Selbrede, and Dr. Joseph C. Morecraft, III, with Nathaniel Darnell serving as emcee.
It is worth noting that Chalcedon’s own Andrea Schwartz has interviewed several of these speakers for Chalcedon’s Out of the Question podcast, including Rev. Strevel, Dr. Klessig, and Dr. Bergeron. These podcasts are indicative of Chalcedon’s interest in seeing that Biblical principles be applied without compromise in the field of medicine.
One could perhaps argue that this conference is ultimately a great-grandchild of Dr. Rushdoony’s influence, in a manner of speaking. The instigating line of Biblical reasoning might with justice be traced from Dr. Rushdoony to Dr. Morecraft to Dr. Edward Payne, whose work with The Journal of Biblical Ethics in Medicine (1987-1994, now available online at www.bmei.org/jbem) and its associated conferences had set the ball in motion in the late 20th century. After a long hiatus, the torch was effectively passed on to Dr. Rhett Bergeron to resume the work started by Dr. Payne, and attendance (in person and via online streaming) for this second Faith and Medicine Conference was much larger than the previous year.
Martin Selbrede had been scheduled to speak at the 2022 conference last year alongside Dr. Payne and other speakers, but Covid-19 sidelined him, postponing his presentation to this year’s conference. Martin’s lecture, “Health for All of Life: Bridging the Gap between Spiritual and Medical Health,” explored the many ways in which God’s revelation undergirds the medical enterprise in terms of biology, physiology, psychology, epistemology, and ethics. To provide a real-world example of how Biblical dynamics play out in the medical field, the final third of Martin’s presentation focused on how the field of addiction medicine was completely reconstructed by the late Dr. Punyamurtula Kishore, whose work was featured in a series of eighteen articles in Faith for All of Life. The vicious deplatforming of Dr. Kishore twelve years ago was a harbinger of things to come in the subsequent age of pandemics and the associated disintegration of the medical enterprise by dint of mindless governmental interference.