Theology Day

Scenes of Recognition in Homer's Odyssey and the Gospel of Luke

  In-person Event | Presenter: Jane Kelley Rodeheffer, Ph.D.

This presentation will explore the literary and cultural similarities between the theme of recognition in two works by Greek authors; Homer’s Odyssey and the Gospel of Luke, at the end of which both Odysseus and Jesus appear as strangers to their followers. These literary works use the same Greek word, epignosko to describe the kind of deep, penetrating knowledge required for recognition of the true persons of both Odysseus and Jesus. Such knowledge is understood within the context of four distinct narrative patterns, the most important of which is the loving surrender of one’s heart. The presentation will develop these narrative patterns and conclude with a discussion of both the challenges and rich possibilities that Luke’s borrowing of Homer might have for our own most recognition of the true person of Jesus as risen.

*In preparation for this event, attendees may wish to read Book 23 of Homer’s Odyssey and chapter 24 of
the Gospel of Luke (available online).

Dr. Jane Kelley Rodeheffer is the Jones Chair of Great Books Emerita at Pepperdine University in Malibu, CA. She holds degrees from Boston College, Harvard , and Vanderbilt Universities. Dr. Rodeheffer is an Oblate of Saint John's Abbey and a former regent of the School of Theology and Seminary.

Dates & Times

  • Friday, February 17, 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. (EST)

    Norris Community Center, Naples FL 

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Please note: Start time indicates when presentations begin; in-person check-in is 30 minutes prior.


Theology Day is a chance for people in our communities who are seeking a deeper understanding of their faith and its place in their everyday lives to learn from and interact with the theologians of Saint John's School of Theology and Seminary. It offers a chance for these scholars to gain insights and grow in their faith, as well.

There is no fee for Theology Day, but registration is required. Free-will offerings and gifts to support the mission of the School of Theology and Seminary are gratefully accepted.

For more information, contact our Development Office at 320-363-3560 or [email protected].

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