SOUTH BEND - A University of Notre Dame associate professor has been named a member of the Pontifical Academy of St. Thomas Aquinas. Pope Francis appointed Therese Cory as one of 50 total members, and one of only two women to be honored. Cory is an Aquinas specialist and studies Aristotle's thoughts as they pertain to Catholicism and the philosophies that connect Muslim, Jewish and Christian thinkers in the Middle Ages. 

Cory says the academy offers a chance for Aquinas scholars to meet and discuss how philosophy and theology diverge and come back together. 

“The group is so international, which opens up aspects of Aquinas’ thought I don’t typically examine,” she said. “Cross-disciplinary collaboration is also hugely important in order to share research among Aquinas experts who approach the same texts with different kinds of questions.”

Pope Leo XIII founded the academy in 1879 to study the thought of St. Thomas Aquinas in service to the world. Notre Dame philosopher John O'Callaghan is also a member.