Thriving Churches, Flourishing Communities

Thriving Churches Conference Speakers

Dr. John Wilsey

Assistant Professor of History and Christian Apologetics at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary

Dr. Wilsey teaches primarily in the Seminary’s fully accredited B.S. program offered to offenders serving life sentences at the Darrington Unit, a maximum security state facility. He is the author of several articles and editorials, as well as One Nation Under God: An Evangelical Critique of Christian America (Pickwick, 2011), and American Exceptionalism and Civil Religion: Reassessing the History of an Idea (IVP Academic, 2015). Most recently, he has produced Democracy in America: A New Abridgment for Students for Lexham Press, which will be appearing this November. He has been married for nineteen years to Mandy, and they have two daughters.

Mr. Rudy Carrasco

United States Regional Facilitator, Partners Worldwide

Rudy Carrasco served for two decades in an incarnational urban youth ministry in the Los Angeles metro. His work in applying private charity principles among the urban poor has been covered by Christianity Today (Where Faith and Culture Meet DVD series) and the Heritage Foundation (Seek Social Justice DVD series). Articles by and about Carrasco have appeared in Discipleship Journal, Pasadena Star-News, and Outreach Magazine. He's an advisory board member of the Christian Community Development Association and a board member of World Vision U.S. He lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Dr. Anne Bradley

Vice President of Economic Initiatives - The Institute for Faith, Work and Economics

Dr. Anne Rathbone Bradley is the Vice President of Economic Initiatives at the Institute, where she develops and commissions research toward a systematic biblical theology of economic freedom. She is a visiting professor at Georgetown University, and she also teaches at The Institute for World Politics and George Mason University. Additionally, she is a visiting scholar at the Bernard Center for Women, Politics, and Public Policy. Previously, she has taught at Charles University, Prague, and she has served as the Associate Director for the Program in Economics, Politics, and the Law at the James M. Buchanan Center at George Mason University.

She is an editor of and contributing author to IFWE’s recently released book, For the Least of These: A Biblical Answer to Poverty. In her chapter, Dr. Rathbone Bradley examines income inequality from both an economic and biblical perspective and provides guidance to Christians on how to respond, particularly through our vocations.

Dr. Rathbone Bradley’s other academic work has focused on the political economy of terrorism with specific emphasis on the industrial organization of al-Qaeda. Her research has been published in scholarly journals and edited volumes. She is currently working on a book that analyzes the political economy of al-Qaeda post 9/11. Based on her academic research she also worked as an economic analyst for the Central Intelligence Agency’s Office of Terrorism Analysis.

Dr. Rathbone Bradley received her Ph.D. in Economics from George Mason University in 2006, during which time she was a James M. Buchanan Scholar.

Rev. Robert Sirico

President, Acton Institute - Pastor - Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish, Grand Rapids, MI

Rev. Robert A. Sirico is the president and co-founder of the Acton Institute and pastor of Sacred Heart of Jesus parish in Grand Rapids, Mich. His writings on religious, political, economic, and social matters are published in a variety of journals, including: the New York Times, the Wall Street JournalForbes, the London Financial Times, the Washington Times, the Detroit News, and National Review. Fr. Sirico is often called upon by members of the broadcast media for statements regarding economics, civil rights, and issues of religious concern, and has provided commentary for CNN, ABC, the BBC, NPR, and CBS' 60 Minutes, among others. In his new book, Defending the Free Market: The Moral Case for a Free Economy, Fr. Sirico shows how a free economy is the best way to meet society’s material needs.