Christopher C. Lund is a professor of law at Wayne State University Law School, where he teaches a variety of courses, including Torts, Contracts, Constitutional Law, Religious Liberty in the United States and Evidence. Excited to teach students, he has been voted Professor of the Year six times.
Lund's scholarly interests vary, but his principal focus has been in the field of religious liberty. His academic work has been published in student-edited law reviews, such as the Northwestern University Law Review, the Virginia Law Review, and the Minnesota Law Review, peer-reviewed legal journals, such as the Journal of Law and Religion; and peer-reviewed interdisciplinary journals, such as History of Religions. He joined Michael McConnell and Thomas Berg as the new co-author on their leading casebook, Religion and the Constitution, the fourth edition of which was published by Aspen in 2016. In 2017, he was awarded the Berman Prize for Excellence in Scholarship by the Law and Religion Section of the American Association of Law Schools for his piece, Religion is Special Enough.
Lund's academic work has been cited extensively by courts and commentators. In the Supreme Court’s recent decision about the constitutionality of a WWI memorial cross, for example, Justice Alito’s majority opinion cited one of his articles while Justice Ginsburg’s dissent cited a brief he had written for the case. In another case, Justice Stephen Breyer brought up another of Lund’s briefs at oral argument, calling it “very excellent.” Lund is regularly called on for his expertise by media outlets, civil rights organizations and religious groups. He is currently chair-elect of the Section on Constitutional Law of the Association of American Law Schools, after earlier stints as chair of both the Section on Law and Religion and the Section on New Law Professors. He sits on the lawyers' committee of the ACLU of Michigan.
Lund joined Wayne University Law School in 2009 from the Mississippi College School of Law. Before teaching, he clerked for the Hon. Karen Nelson Moore on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, served as the Madison Fellow at Americans United for Separation of Church and State, and practiced law at Dechert LLP in Philadelphia. Lund earned his law degree with high honors from the University of Texas School of Law and his bachelor’s from Rice University, summa cum laude, with majors in mathematics and psychology.
During fall semester 2013, Lund was on leave from Wayne Law, teaching at the University of Notre Dame Law School.
Degrees and Certifications
J.D., University of Texas School of Law, with high honors
B.A., Rice University, summa cum laude
Religious Liberty in the United States
Martyrdom and Religious Freedom, Connecticut Law Review (2018) (symposium)
Religious Exemptions, Third-Party Harms, and the False Analogy to Church Taxes, Kentucky Law Journal (2018) (symposium)
Religion is Special Enough, Virginia Law Review (2017)
Religious Exemptions, Third-Party Harms, and the Establishment Clause, Notre Dame Law Review (2016) (symposium)
RFRA, State RFRAs, and Religious Minorities, San Diego Law Review (2016) (symposium)
Keeping Hobby Lobby in Perspective, in The Rise of Corporate Religious Liberty (Micah Schwartzman, Chad Flanders, & Zoe Robinson eds., Oxford University Press, 2016)
The Propriety of Religious Exemptions: A Response to Sager, St. Louis University Law Review (2016) (invited response to annual Childress Lecture)
Free Exercise Reconceived: The Logic and Limits of Hosanna-Tabor, Northwestern University Law Review (2014)
Rethinking the "Religious Questions" Doctrine, Pepperdine Law Review (2014) (symposium)
Leaving Disestablishment to the Political Process, Duke Journal of Constitutional Law and Public Policy (2014) (invited essay)
The New Victims of the Old Anti-Catholicism, Connecticut Law Review (2012)
The Future of the Establishment Clause in Context: A Response to Ledewitz, Chicago-Kent Law Review (2012) (symposium)
Salazar v. Buono and the Future of the Establishment Clause, Northwestern University Law Review (2011)
In Defense of the Ministerial Exception, North Carolina Law Review (2011)
Social Science Research Network
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REVISION: Martyrdom and Religious Freedom
July 16, 2019When we give religious exemptions, why do we do it? Is it because we think people will back down otherwise or because we think they won’t? What exactly are religious exemptions trying to avoid? The harm to conscience that submission would bring? Or the defiance and resistance that refusal would entail? <br><br>The easy answer is both. And it is the truthful answer as well. We give religious exemptions both to avoid the prospect of martyrdom and to avoid the prospect of broken consciences. Religious exemptions protect human dignity and freedom; they also avert open contestation between church and state. Both things are good, and there is no need to choose between them. <br><br>Yet even so, the above questions still linger. And how you think about them can end up coloring your approach to all kinds of things: which claims should succeed and which should fail, how doctrine ought to be constructed, and what religious liberty is all about. This symposium essay ponders these ...
REVISION: Martyrdom and Religious Freedom
April 8, 2019When we give religious exemptions, why do we do it? Is it because we think people will back down otherwise or because we think they won’t? What exactly are religious exemptions trying to avoid? The harm to conscience that submission would bring? Or the defiance and resistance that refusal would entail? <br><br>The easy answer is both. And it is the truthful answer as well. We give religious exemptions both to avoid the prospect of martyrdom and to avoid the prospect of broken consciences. Religious exemptions protect human dignity and freedom; they also avert open contestation between church and state. Both things are good, and there is no need to choose between them. <br><br>Yet even so, the above questions still linger. And how you think about them can end up coloring your approach to all kinds of things: which claims should succeed and which should fail, how doctrine ought to be constructed, and what religious liberty is all about. This symposium essay ponders these ...
New: Religious Exemptions, Third-Party Harms, and the False Analogy to Church Taxes
January 24, 2019In recent years, scholars have developed a variety of arguments as to how the Establishment Clause might limit religious exemptions that impose costs on others. Seeking historical footing for such claims, some have analogized the harm imposed by religious exemptions to church taxes, a classic feature of religious establishments traditionally conceived. This analogy has some appeal. But it also runs into some real problems, both practical and conceptual. On the practical level, it would invalidate religious exemptions that almost everyone finds sensible—like prisons providing Kosher meals to Jewish inmates. This practical problem can be traced back to its mistaken conceptual root: the analogy conflates government support for religious liberty with government support for religion. This is a deep mistake, as the two are quite different things. Government support for religion is impermissible in a system like ours, but government support for religious liberty is a bedrock constitutional ...
- REVISION: Martyrdom and Religious Freedom
Religion and the Constitution (Wolters Kluwer) 2016 fourth edition, with Michael W. McConnell and Thomas C. Berg
The book covers the traditional array of church-state topics, including the regulation of religious practice, the funding of religious institutions, the endorsement by government of religious messages, and the appropriateness of religion in politics. Among other updates, the fourth edition includes the U.S. Supreme Court's recent decisions in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, Hosanna-Tabor v. EEOC and Holt v. Hobbs, as well as important contemporary lower-court cases, such as Elane Photography v. Willock and Spencer v. World Vision.
- Christopher Lundwas awarded the Excellence in Scholarship award by the Association of American Law Schools Section on Law and Religion.
- Christopher C. Lund was a panelist at the Stetson Law Review Symposium in Gulfport, Florida. Lund discussed “What role can the concept of animus play in Establishment and Free Exercise Clause doctrine? Does the religion context change the nature of the animus inquiry?”
- Christopher C. Lundjoined the Detroit office of law firm Dalton and Tomich PLC.
- Christopher Lund’s article “The Congressional Chaplaincies” was cited by the U.S. Supreme Court in its case American Legion et al. v. American Humanist Assn. et al.