WASHINGTON – Washington National Cathedral will host an in-person forum titled “With Malice Toward None, With Charity Toward All” in collaboration with Wesley Theological Seminary and the Wheatley Institute at Brigham Young University on Wednesday, February 21, 2024.

 At 7:30 p.m. ET in the Cathedral’s nave, invited experts will discuss the challenges of polarization in our political landscape and explore ways to rebuild empathy and understanding in civic discourse, especially during a heated election year.

“This Cathedral is committed to convening all people of goodwill to address some of the deep divisions in our country that threaten to pull us apart, and our inability and even our unwillingness to engage with others we disagree with certainly tops that list,” said the Very Rev. Randolph Marshall Hollerith, dean of Washington National Cathedral. “The only way forward is for us to do this work together, and that starts by re-learning how to talk with and listen to each other.”

The forum, generously sponsored by Deseret Magazine, will feature a keynote conversation led by Republican Gov. Spencer Cox of Utah and Democratic Gov. Wes Moore of Maryland, focusing on Gov. Cox’s “Disagree Better” initiative, which aims to mitigate political polarization, highlight solutions implemented by groups nationwide, and demonstrate effective disagreement resolution through public debates, service projects and public service announcements. 

Following this, veteran Democratic political strategist Donna Brazile; former Associate Attorney General Rachel Brand; Harvard law professor and co-director of the Berkman Klein Center Ruth Okediji; and human rights activist Tim Shriver will participate in a panel discussion on efforts to reject divisive rhetoric and model a new form of politics. 

Finally, Peter Wehner, columnist for The New York Times and The Atlantic and former speechwriter for former presidents Reagan, George H.W. Bush and George Bush, will join Joshua DuBois, director of faith-based and neighborhood partnerships for the Obama administration, for a conversation on how to channel unique experiences toward positive civil discourse.

“’The National Cathedral is a sacred space where Americans of all beliefs have gathered during critical moments in our national life to seek healing for our wounds,” said The Hon. Thomas B. Griffith, a retired judge on the U.S.Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and now a Fellow at the Wheatley Institute. “It’s a perfect setting for this extraordinary gathering of thought leaders whose politics differ, but who recognize that the nation’s most urgent need is to rid our current political discourse of the contempt that fuels the toxic polarization that divides us.”

“With Malice Toward None, With Charity Toward All” is free and open to the public for in-person and online attendance. Participants should RSVP here for in-person attendance or to receive a livestream of the forum. 

“Faith leaders can take the third choice in this polarized season: neither hide from it nor contribute to it, but be repairers of the breach,” said the Rev. Dr. David McAllister-Wilson, president of Wesley Theological Seminary.  

Media is welcome to attend the forum in person and should contact Eleanor Donohue for details.


Eleanor Donohue, 202-704-5840, [email protected]


About Washington National Cathedral
Grounded in the reconciling love of Jesus Christ, Washington National Cathedral is a house of prayer for all people, conceived by our founders to serve as a great church for national purposes.

About Wesley Theological Seminary
The mission of Wesley Theological Seminary is to equip persons for Christian ministry and leadership in the church and the world, to advance theological scholarship, and to model a prophetic voice in the public square.

About The Wheatley Institute at Brigham Young University
The Wheatley Institute engages students, scholars, thought leaders and the public in research-supported work that fortifies the core institutions of the family, religion and constitutional government.

About Deseret Magazine
Informed by its distinct history and values, Deseret Magazine is an award-winning monthly publication championing civility and covering the intersection of faith, family, culture and politics.