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Release: Immediate

Religion's role in health is topic of symposium lectures

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The role of spirituality in the healing process is the topic of an upcoming University of Iowa symposium April 6.

Sponsored by the UI School of Religion, the Religion, Spirituality, Health, and Healing symposium will be from 2 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. in the Pappajohn Business Administration Building, Rm. W151.

The keynote speaker will be Dr. David B. Larson, president of the National Institute for Healthcare Research. Larson will speak on the topic "Is God Good for Your Health?" Larson, who completed his psychiatry residency and geriatric fellowship training at Duke University Medical Center, has 12 years experience as a senior researcher in the Office of the Director of the National Institutes for Health, the Office of the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the National Institute of Mental Health.

The program also will include discussion groups led by religion professors, psychologists, nurses, counselors and members of the clergy. Topics to be addressed include "Prayer: Magic, Science, or Religion?", "Spirituality, Mental Health and Wholeness," "Physical Illness/Trauma As a Spiritual Journey," "Health Ministry Professions" and "Medical Research on Religion and Health: Friend or Foe?"

Later that evening, Larson will lead a discussion on the topic, "The Forgotten Factor in Physical and Mental Health: What Does the Research Say?" from 7 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. at the UI Hospitals and Clinics John Colloton Pavilion, 7th floor dining and atrium.

The symposium is co-sponsored by the Consultation of Religious Communities, Iowa City; Agudas Achim Congregation; Gloria Dei Lutheran Church; and by Project Art, the Department of Pastoral Services and the Department of Family Medicine at the UI Hospitals and Clinics.

For further information about the symposium, contact Maureen Walterhouse at (319)335-3715 or Diana Cates at (319)2172.