Church leaders and scholars will gather in Poland next week to explore the “natural law legacy” of St. John Paul II.

Keynote speakers at the May 18-19 event co-hosted by Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński University in Warsaw and Ave Maria School of Law include the Polish pope’s biographer George Weigel, Princeton professor Robert George, and Harvard professor Adrian Vermeule.

Also scheduled to speak are the Dutch Cardinal Willem Eijk, Warsaw Cardinal Kazimierz Nycz, and Latvian Archbishop Zbigņevs Stankēvičs.

Topics at the conference, whose lead co-host is Ave Maria School of Law, will include John Paul II’s vision of natural law, his contribution to biotechnology and human rights, and human rights in a secularized society.

Among the moderators will be Alejandro Bermúdez, the executive director of CNA and the ACI Group, Joan Lewis, the former EWTN Rome bureau chief, and Solène Tadié, the National Catholic Register’s Europe correspondent.

John Paul II, born Karol Wojtyła on May 18, 1920, survived the Nazi occupation of Poland and helped to lead the Church’s resistance to the oppressive communist regime that followed.

The first non-Italian pope in 455 years, he made more foreign trips than all previous popes combined and played a role in the collapse of the Soviet Bloc, the communist states of Central and Eastern Europe.

He led the Church from 1978 to his death in 2005. During his almost 27-year pontificate, he wrote 14 encyclicals, 15 apostolic exhortations, and 45 apostolic letters, as well as giving hundreds of catechetical addresses at his weekly general audiences.