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About Us

John M. Haas, Ph.D., S.T.L., M.Div., K.M., President

John M. Haas is the President of The National Catholic Bioethics Center received his Ph.D. in Moral Theology from The Catholic University of America and his S.T.L. in Moral Theology from the University of Fribourg, Switzerland. He also has a Master of Divinity degree and has studied at the University of Munich and the University of Chicago Divinity School. Before assuming the Presidency of The National Catholic Bioethics Center, Dr. Haas was the John Cardinal Krol Professor of Moral Theology at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and Adjunct Professor at the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies in Marriage and the Family, Washington, D.C.

Dr. Haas has held various other academic posts as a faculty member of the Commission for Inter-professional Education and Practice at Ohio State University and Professor of Moral Theology at the Pontifical College Josephinum in Worthington, Ohio.  He has been a regular contributor to Our Sunday Visitor, The National Catholic Register and the Legatus Magazine. He has written many articles on topics ranging from the role of the laity in the Church, to sexual morality, social justice issues and bioethics. He is the editor of and a contributor to Crisis of Conscience (Herder/ Crossroads), a contributor to Christian Marriage: A Historical Study (Herder/Crossroads), has written Marriage and the Priesthood and Contraception: A Personal Odyssey (Scepter Press), and was a contributing editor to Crisis, the St. Austin Review and Touchstone magazines. His Opinion Pieces have appeared in the New York Times, the Boston Globe and the Philadelphia Inquirer. He has lectured extensively in the United States and abroad, including Peru, Mexico, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Canada, and at the Vatican. Dr. Haas has testified before state and federal judicial and legislative committees on bioethical topics including physician assisted suicide and human cloning. He has also provided testimony to the President's National Bioethics Advisory Commission.

Dr. Haas serves as a member of the Medical Moral Commission of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and as a consultant to the Committee for Pro-Life Activities of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and to the Health Care Sub-Committee of the Doctrine Committee. He is a former board member of the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars and is a board member and faculty member of the International Catholic University. In 2002 Dr. Haas was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Christian Ethics by the Franciscan University of Steubenville. He was also awarded an honorary doctorate by Immaculata University in Philadelphia.  In 2004 he was elected to the board of the International Federation of Bioethics Centers and Institutes of Personalist Inspiration (FIBIP) which was based in Rome under the leadership of Cardinal Elio Sgreccia; he was elected its President in 2016.  In 2006 he was appointed an Ordinary Member of the Pontifical Academy for Life by Pope Benedict XVI and in June 2010 the Holy Father named him to the Governing Council of the Academy. Pope Benedict also appointed him to the Pontifical Council for Pastoral Care to Health Workers.  Pope Francis reappointed him to the Pontifical Academy for Life when it was reconstituted under the leadership of Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia. For a number of years Dr. Haas produced and hosted a national television program known as The St. Charles Forum which was carried on the Catholic network EWTN.

Dr. Haas is also Founder and President of the International Institute for Culture based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Institute was founded in response of the call of St. John Paul II for the re-evangelization of culture and also promotes international understanding through cultural means. It organizes and sponsors international conferences, a two month intensive summer classics institute offering instruction in Greek and Latin which draws people from around the country, a Spanish language program in Mexico for high school students, another for executives and one for Catholic seminarians and priests. The Institute also organizes international cultural programs in Bavaria on the relationship between faith and culture.

In the early eighties Dr. Haas was a registered foreign agent for the National Bank of Mexico and Executive Director of Banamex Cultural Foundation, a Washington, D.C. based non-profit educational corporation which sought to promote bi-lateral relations and understanding between the United States and Mexico through cultural means. He also served as a consultant to the Department of Justice on Hispanic and Family Issues during the first Reagan Administration. He is a Knight of Magistral Grace of the Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of St. John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta and the former Philadelphia Area Chairman.  In November 2016 His Most Eminent Highness, the Prince and Grand Master and the Sovereign Council of the Order granted him the Cross of Commander “Pro Merito Melitense”.  He is also a Knight of Columbus and a Knight of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre.

Dr. Haas and his wife Martha have nine children and an ever increasing number of grandchildren. They reside in Philadelphia.