Welcome to the FIRST

The newsletter of Catholic Theological Ethics in the World Church
CTEWC Visiting Professorship
September 2015

Dear Friends
First, I share with you the sad news of Philipp Schmitz's (1935-2015) passing on the morning of August 29.   I have no other news than that he had been in and out of the hospital in July.  Let us pray for him and give thanks the many, many students he taught and mentored and for the many good friendships he cultivated.
Second we are very happy to give you the link to a wonderful article in
National Catholic Reporter on our Conference in Bangalore: http://ncronline.org/news/global/catholic-moral-theologians-scan-asian-reality
have you ever wanted to go to Manila or Nairobi or Bangalore or Pune????  Our
Visiting Professors Program might be just the Opportunity you are looking for.  Check out the possibility of teaching in any of these four cities.  http://www.catholicethics.com/top-stories/catholic-theological-ethics-in-the-world-church-visiting-professorship-program
To further tempt you we asked recent visiting Professors to share their experiences: Patricia Beattie Jung and Shannon Jung share their time in Manila, Joe Selling shares his in Nairobi, and Gustavo Irrazábal shares his experience  in Manila too.  Think about it, these are wonderful opportunities.
Fourth, our Forum is full with essays by Mary Doyle Roche (US), Anthony Egan (South Africa), Joe Selling (Belgium, US), Miguel Sanchez (Mexico), and a very live rendition of what's happening in the streets of Malaysia today by Sharon Bong.
Fifth, we have reports from Latin America, Europe and North America.
Sixth, we introduce you to another new writer at the Asian Forum: Hoa Dinh.
Finally we have book announcements.
All the best,

 In Memoriam: Philipp Schmitz S.J., 1935-2015


Read more about Philipp, here. (German)
CTEWC Forums from Latin America, Asia, Europe, Africa, and North America
Visiting Professorship - Reports
Patricia Beattie Jung and Shannon Jung, Manila 

"We arrived in Metro Manila in early June and settled into our flat in Malate near the De La Salle University (DLSU) just before the new academic year began at Saint Vincent School of Theology (SVST) in Quezon City.   Patti is teaching a large section of first year students "Fundamental Moral Theology" at SVST.  It is very interesting to think in new ways about such basics as the virtue of fortitude. Endurance and resiliency appear more ambiguous when they are coupled with a cultural emphasis on the avoidance of conflict and little endorsement for resistance to injustice. Patti is also teaching a doctoral course on "Sexual Morality in Magisterial Teachings and Theology." Online conversations with these students from around the globe about the Church's null curriculum in these matters has been greatly enriched by the many fresh reflections emerging in preparation for the upcoming Synod on the Family.  Laudato Si could not have come at a better time for Shannon!  He is teaching a Special Moral Questions on Environmental Ethics to an engaging class of fourth year students also at SVST and has been invited to address environmental questions in several venues throughout metro Manila.

In addition to these regular teaching assignments, we have both been invited to participate in various ways at a number of academic events. Shortly after our arrival we were invited to the annual meeting of the DaKaTeo (Catholic Theological Society of the Philippines).  It proved to be great opportunity for us to meet many fine theologians from across the archipelago and to hear their reflections on the Lineamenta.  The meeting was held in Tagaytay in a peaceful retreat house overlooking the spectacular Lake Taal within which is the world's smallest active volcano. At the close of this meeting we were both invited to give brief reflections: Shannon on the state of marriage and family in the United States and Patti on the group's theological conversation as a whole. Not long thereafter, we spoke on interdisciplinary research strategies during a day long workshop for DLSU students from the metro area who are ABD. We each gave plenary addresses to over 300 members the Religious Educators' Association of the Philippines at their annual meeting. We gave six lectures to a special cohort group of DLSU doctoral students in conjunction with Fr. Maxell Aranilla's intensive Philosophy of Love course at San Carlos Seminary in Makati, and we will repeat them for another course at DLSU. Shannon was invited to co-teach the Creation half of a "Creation and Grace" course at Maryhill School of Theology (MST) with Fr. Dave Capucao.  In addition, he has written book reviews of the late Lucas Chan's Biblical Ethics in the 21st Centuryfor the East Asian Pastoral Review, and also Colm McKeating's Light Which Dims the Stars: A Christian Theology of Creationfor the MST Review.  He is also doing a plenary forum on Laudato Si for MST and will make a presentation on "Towards an Indigenous Filipino Eco-theology" at SVST. 

Rest assured it has not been all work and no play. Our gracious hosts have seen to that!  Our flat is adjacent to De La Salle University where we have been given offices and library privileges etc., and from which we have been exploring the neighborhoods and restaurants of Malate and Ermita. We are both taking an aikido class offered to the faculty and students at SVST.  Besides visiting museums in Antipolo, Makati and Malate, we have visited Greenbelt and Rizal Parks as well as San Augustin Church and other parts of the old town Intramuros.  We have been snorkeling in the coral reefs off the island of Mindoro, and hope in the months ahead to do more snorkeling, next time off the coast of Palawan, to swim with the whale sharks near Cebu, and to see the Chocolate Hills and tarsiers of Bohol.  Overall our time as CTEWC Visiting Professors has been intellectually very stimulating and personally enriching. We feel very privileged and grateful for this blessing.    

Joe Selling, Nairobi 
Teaching Theological Ethics in Nairobi


My name is Joseph Selling and from 1978 to the summer of 2011, I was full time professor of moral theology at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven - better known to most English speakers as the Catholic University of Louvain, located in the Flemish city of Leuven, Belgium. Although both I and my wife are American by birth, we have lived in Belgium since 1972 and consider ourselves American-Europeans.
Shortly after I became emeritus, the CTEWC announced its 'visiting professorship' program. One of the four places available to teach was in Nairobi, Kenya, at the Jesuit College called Hekima, which is Swahili for 'wisdom'. I applied and was accepted to teach in the Spring semester of 2015. The program foresees a tenure of anywhere from a month to an entire semester. Since I was not available to teach in January, I proposed a period of two months, from the beginning of February until the end of March, which coincided with the College's Easter break.
Hekima is run by the Jesuits, but the (full-time) student body is made up of members of several religious orders which have resident houses in the immediate area. Through the affiliation of the religious orders, students could be coming from anywhere in Africa and some even come from Asia and Mexico. This presented a widely varying group of students representing many cultures, languages, ethnic backgrounds, and views of theology and the church.
To say the least, Hekima students did not always agree with what I was saying; but more interesting was the fact that they frequently did not agree with each other. The number of students, ranging from around 75 in Fundamental Moral Theology to a small group of 10 for a seminar, were always ready to 'discuss', ask questions, and push me to explain what I really, personally thought on just about every issue related to what I was teaching.
In Leuven I had contact with students from all over the world. But in that situation it is the students who are immersed in our culture, while at Hekima it was I who was immersed in theirs. The strength of 'traditional cultures' in Africa is a phenomenon that I believe most Europeans and Americans would find challenging. Our modernistic, 'open culture' of widely varied lifestyles leaves the impression that what one considers to be normative is always under review.
To take just one example, our understanding of marriage and male-females relationships in general has undergone fundamental change in my lifetime. It is illuminating to encounter other cultural contexts where these relationships are largely governed by traditional patterns and expectations.
African traditional cultures are, in my opinion, much stronger than most people in the 'first world' would imagine. This presents a significant challenge in presenting what we today call theological ethics, but it also has implications for how we in Europe go about doing theology and dealing with church structures. Having to reformulate what I was presenting was a constant challenge, but in the process I must admit that I think I learned as much as I taught.
I would be amiss if I neglected mentioning my experience and relationship with the teaching staff at Hekima. Although many of them received their higher degrees in European or American contexts, they are much closer to African culture than I imagined. Having successfully made the bridge between the experience of church (and theology) in the first world and in the African context, their examples of combining academic theology with practical, pastoral training was enlightening.
All things considered, I am extremely grateful to have had an experience in some contrast to my former academic environment, where the emphasis is on research, publication, shifting paradigms, and increasing the funding for all these things. All of that is important if theology is going to make any progress. But the opportunity to test the fruits of that labor in the field is something from which I believe every theologian - especially ethicists - can benefit.

Gustavo Irrazábal, Manila
Visiting the Philippines

For Latin-Americans like me, born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, the Philippines are literally the other side of the world, a two-day flight that seems to have no end. But, when I knew Manila, I immediately felt at ease, because I realized that, in a sense, they are not that far from us. Their culture resembles pretty much ours (even in politics!), surely due to their Hispanic heritage. They are lively, chaotic and extrovert. They are kind and warm with foreigners. They are respectful and affectionate with priests. They are surprisingly religious, and their popular religiosity is in many ways of the kind you find everywhere in Latin America, from Mexico to Argentina: sanctuaries, processions, saints, marian devotions, novenas, pilgrimages and the like. Their liturgies are very well prepared, with great participation of the assembly, lectors, ministers of the Eucharist, choruses singing charming religious music, and a joyful atmosphere, things which I sometimes miss in my own city. Even malls usually have their own chapels, so that people may attend mass and then go shopping in the same place. There's a restaurant in the historic center of the City ("Intramuros") where the courses in the menu are named after bishops, whose pictures are hanging on the wall all around you as if looking at you while you eat!

I was in Manila when Pope Francis visited the country, in January. I could see the enthusiasm his presence arose everywhere. For two months there seemed to be no other subject of conversation. There was a wonderful connection, a deep mutual understanding, between Francis and the crowds during the different events of his visit, as if they had known each other for a whole life. This was particularly evident when the Pope put aside his speeches in English and spoke spontaneously in Spanish. Even weeks after his departure, in all the Churches people went on offering special prayers for the Pope, in response to his petition: "ˇRecen por mí!" (Pray for me!).

At the same time, some of his statements caused a certain tension among the bishops, especially those referred to contraception. The exhortation addressed to the people "not to breed like rabbits" generated heated debates, which showed serious issues in the relations of the Church not only with the government but also with the faithful.

In fact, it seems to me that in the Philippines the boundaries between Church and the political community are not as clear as they should be. The exigency to have the official teaching of the Church on contraception enforced by civil law sounds unrealistic, to say the least. Moreover, it seems not to take into account the real social situation of an important sector of the Filipinos society. I had the opportunity to visit some of the poorest quarters in Manila, and see how poor people live in overcrowded neighborhoods, surrounded by a highly contaminated environment, with scarce public services, and no help whatsoever from the state. Many die from tuberculosis and other deceases which could be prevented with minimum improvements in public health services. Irresponsible parenthood therefore should be strongly discouraged. The words of the Pope were not incidental, neither were those calling confessors to be merciful with their penitents.

In the Loyola School of Theology, placed in the Ateneo de Manila, where I delivered my course on sexual ethics, professors and students showed a great interest in the social thinking of the Pope. They kindly gave me the opportunity to give a lecture on the "Theology of the People" (the argentine version of the theology of liberation), the theology endorsed by the Pope. They feel attracted by the way this theology appreciates culture and popular religiosity as having a great potential for social transformation. At the same time, they are not conditioned by the tendency, so strong in Argentina and in other Latin American countries, to romanticize and idealize poverty, perhaps with the best intentions, but eventually fostering the populist political movements that keep many of our countries underdeveloped and oppressed. I hope we find ways to promote a dialogue among theologians of both countries.
In my opinion, the Church in Philippines has the capacity to develop their own original social thought, inspired by the preferential option for the poor, but at the same time realistic and well balanced, in order to keep pace with the democracy and the free market economy which, for all their flaws, are improving the lives of the Filipinos and gradually leading the country to the place it deserves among the successful economies of southeast Asia.
In sum, being a visiting professor has been deeply enriching for me. In my class I had not only Filipino students but also others coming from China, Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, Timor, etc. Experiences like this make us expand our horizons and realize how big the world and our Catholic Church are.

Regional News from Europe
Report from the 52nd annual conference of
Societas Ethica which took place in  
Linköping, Sweden (August 20 - 23, 2015)
The title of the conference was 'Globalisation and Global Justice'. There were about 90 participants from all over the world and 55 presentations. The keynote speakers were Jan Aart Scholte, Kok Chor Tan, Lea Ypi and William Schweiker. For more information about the program, see: http://www.societasethica.info/annual-conference-2015/presentation/1.645843/programme-se-linkoping-2015.pdf
During the conference a new presidency was elected. The current president Göran Collste was replaced by a new president Hile Haker, who is the first woman leading the association of the European philosophical and theological ethicists. Next year the conference will take place in Bad Boll near Stuttgart, Germany, from August 18 - 21. The topic will be Ethics and Law.
Report from Annual colloquium of the Association de théologiens pour l'étude la morale (ATEM)
From August 26th to 29th, an annual colloquium of the Francophone and Ecumenical Association of Moral Theologians (ATEM) took place in Trento (Italy). The subject of the meeting, hosted by the Bruno Kessler Foundation, was "The identity and the Mission of Ethical Theology Today in Society and in the Churches". Fifteen speakers gave their contributions to enlighten the actual challenges and opportunities for theological ethics in public debate and in the service of Christian communities, in the context of institutional and cultural changes. There was also an ecumenical celebration with the bishop of Trento and the former president of the Lutheran Church of Alsace. It was held in the same place were the deliberations of the Council took place. As usual, the acts of the colloquium will be published in the Revue d'éthique et de théologie morale (RETM), Cerf, Paris.
The publication of the acts of the 2014 colloquium: Homme perfectible, homme augmenté?, (Marc Feix, Karsten Lehmkülher, ed.), RETM 286, Cerf, Paris, 228 p. [human enhancement, ethical challenges].
One of the working sessions

The ecumenical celebration in the Church of the Trento Council.
Invitation to the 37th Congress of the International Association of German-Speaking Moral Theologians and Social Ethicists in Würzburg, Germany (September 6 - 9, 2015)
Age and Aging - Challenges for Theological Ethics
Demographic change and thus an increasing proportion of elderly people in the world's population represents one of the major challenges in our society. The goal of the Congress is to raise the most important findings and results of the relevant disciplines such as medicine (gerontology), anthropology as well as social and economic sciences. Furthermore, numerous questions of social ethics and individual ethics emerging at high age will be addressed and possible solutions will be formulated considering both theological and ethical point of view.
For further details, please see the link below.

Information about new books in French, Italian, German and English
The 2015 Synod on the Family is approaching. Two books were published in France this August. The first one comes from a conference held at the Institut Catholique de Paris in February on the Divine Pedagogy as an account of God's action in the diversity of families: Pédagogie divine.

The second one is composed of the answers of 26 theologians to the 16 questions the French Conference of Catholic Bishops asked them to examine: Synode sur la vocation et la mission de la famille dans l'Eglise et dans le monde contemporain: 26 théologiens répondent. The Italian translation was also published, with an afterword by Enzo Bianchi: La famiglia tra sfide e prospettive (Edizioni Qiqajon).

A new book about Homosexuality and the Catholic Church, edited by German moral theologian Stephan Goertz, was published by Herder on 11th August 2015.
Some of the authors are for example: Prof. Dr. Thomas Hieke, Prof. Dr. Michael Theobald, Prof. Dr. Magnus Striet, Prof. Dr. Stephan Goertz, Prof. Ph.D. Todd A. Salzman, Prof. Ph.D. Michael G. Lawler, Prof. Dr. Josef Römelt, Prof. Dr. Alberto Bondolfi  and Prof. Dr. Gerhard Marschütz.
Original title of the book is: "Wer bin ich, ihn zu verurteilen?" Homosexualität und katholische Kirche
For further information on the book, visit the website of Herder or follow this link: http://www.herder.de/buecher/details?k_tnr=33273&par_onl_struktur=1573777&onl_struktur=0&sort=1&query_start=&tb=0&titel=

The following interview with Stephan Goertz about his new book was published on the website katholisch.de: http://www.katholisch.de/aktuelles/aktuelle-artikel/nicht-den-stab-uber-andere-brechen
A new book about the Culture of Shame and Guilt, written by Rita Werden, was published in »Studien der Moraltheologie Bd. 3« by Aschendorff in Münster (2015).
For further information on the book and the new series, visit the website of Aschendorff or follow this link: https://www.aschendorff-buchverlag.de/shop/vam/apply/viewdetail/id/5502/
A new publication about the role of the State, Church and Religion in the responsibility for common good edited by Inocent Szaniszló was published: Summer School of Political ethics. Where is Civil Society in Central Europe Heading To? September 15-24, 2014. Alexander Spesz´s Institute of Applied Ethics on Catholic University of Ruzomberok, Faculty of Theology in Kosice, Slovakia. ISBN 978-80-7165.961-7, Michal Vasko- Presov, 242 pages.

Regional News from Latin America 
By: MT Davila


We congratulate Pablo Blanco González on receiving the award "ESTIMULO A LA INVESTIGACION 2015" (Advancement in Research 2015)! The Pontificia Universidad Católica (UCA) for the second time granted the prize "Premio Estímulo" to Prof. Pablo A. Blanco (previously in 2013), for his participation in the book "Installing the Kingdom of the Father and His Justice: Commentary on Envangelii Gaudium" (in Spanish: "Instauremos el Reino del Padre y su Justicia: Comentarios a la Evangelii Gaudium").

According to the notice of the award "Prof. Blanco's chapter, titled "Evangelii Gaudium: the Joy of Reshaping Politics and the Political", points to political action as an essential element of human life, which socially and intimately binds the person to every human being, and which cannot be rescinded without cataclysmic consequences for all of society."

The chapter also notes that "the principles in Pope Francis' document aren't strictly part of a pragmatic field, but rather already play a role in transformative action in social reality, confirming the concrete and historical actualization of the Gospel's social principles - pillars of a new society already present in germinal stages."

Finally, "the author's commitment in his intellectual and academic reflection are at the core of his recognition for this essay, as emblematic of this university and the advancement in research program."

Participation in the 12th Edition of the National Congress of Political Science in Argentina

Pablo A. Blanco and Emilce Cuda participated in this congress as part of and coordinating various panels. The congress had national and regional impact, with broad coverage in various media(http://www.lanacion.com.ar/1820835-politologos-los-expertos-en-desentranar-el-poder). Over 2,500 took part in the meetings.

-Human rights in Latin America: Do they entail citizenship?
-Popular identities: Rethinking democracy today - scientific, aesthetic, and political forms in the construction of popular identities.  
-Religion and politics: Theological-Political foundations of culture - From Bergoglio to Francis
-Theory and foci in the analysis of public policies
-Religion and Politics: transformations in the Catholic Church 50 years after Vatican II
-The church in dialogue with the current world

We share the following publications by Ronaldo Zacharias:
Zacharias, Ronaldo. "Educaçăo sexual, ética de crescimento e moral missionária: elementos para uma ética mais misericordiosa". In Studium 9/15 (2015): 73-84.

Zacharias, Ronaldo: "A difícil e fascinante arte de ensinar Teologia Moral". In: PESSINI, Leo - ZACHARIAS, Ronaldo. Teologia Moral. Fundamentos, desafios, perspectivas. Aparecida: Santuário, 2015, p. 299-327.
And announce the publication of the volume by Zacharias and Leo Pessini:
PESSINI, Leo - ZACHARIAS, Ronaldo. Teologia Moral. Fundamentos, desafios, perspectivas. Aparecida: Santuário, 2015.
María Isabel Gil Espinosa shares the good news of the publication of her book: Conciencia de Pecado y de Culpa, Editorial Pontificia Universidad Javeriana.

Regional News from North America
By: Kristin Heyer

            This month we would like to provide a more in-depth report on the North American committee's "Beyond Trento" interest group session at the June 2015 Catholic Theological Society of American convention held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin (a brief overview and photos of the session appeared in the July issue of "The First"). The interest group was initiated in the wake of CTEWC's 2010 international gathering in Trento, Italy to consider how understanding CTSA members' work as taking place in a global church should transform the shape of North American theological discourse and ethical praxis.  This second gathering began with a moment of silent prayer for our colleague, Lúcás Chan, who presented at the inaugural meeting last year and died suddenly just weeks before this year's meeting.
            Christine Firer Hinze's contribution, "The Cross-Cultural Challenge to North American Theological Ethics," focused upon the dangers of "indifference" and "superficiality" - the dual "coins of privilege" - in North American encounters with theological voices from the global South.  Offering an Ignatian-inspired examen of conscience of her teaching and scholarship, she detailed two perils that North American scholars must contend with. The first, pedagogical indifference, she defined as a "not caring" caused by a concern for other justice issues (such as gender and race in the US context), or stemming from an ability to conduct one's work without reference to the voices of the global community ("I don't have to care"); and/or motivated by a fear of the consequences or burdens that such a care might occasion.  She described, pedagogical superficiality, as utilizing cross-cultural or global perspectives in an occasional manner or in a way that is insufficiently focused or reflective.  The danger of such superficiality, she asserted, was that it could leave the students in an undesirable - even dangerous - state of ignorance while thinking that they in fact DO know.
            Agreeing with Catholic Social Teaching tradition, Pope Francis, and Jesuit Superior General A. Nicholas that encounter/solidarity is the appropriate remedy to these perils, she offered a reading of such solidarity inspired by decolonizing theorists. Such thinkers challenge understandings and practices of solidarity that are blind to their entanglements in disparities of power and resources, histories of exploitation and victimization, and their present unjust consequences.  What such theorists do to privileged North American ethicists is "trouble" them.  To do responsible ethical analysis and reflection in a global context "means waking up to the fact that we advantaged Christians start with a moral, and likely spiritual, disadvantage; we labor under cognitive, imaginative, and affective handicaps."  This demands that North American ethicists have the humility to listen and learn in ways that resist a facile eliding of difference.  She proposed undertaking and modeling for our students' regular examens of conscience and pedagogy, grounded in "tactics of troubling visibility," which however self-implicating and even "sickening," are the ways forward to responsible and indeed ethical moral reflection.
            Victor Carmona deepened Hinze's observations by showing that the challenges of cross-cultural ethical work are much closer at hand for North Americans than is commonly acknowledged.  Due to immigration, the Catholic reality in the US is now deeply marked by the presence of persons from the global South.  Carmona offered the demographics of the Oblate School of Theology - roughly 1/3 Hispanic, 1/3 white, 13% African American, and 20% international students principally from Mexico, Zambia, and Vietnam - his experience of teaching of in such an environment as a case study.  The major challenge, he related, stemmed not only text selection and syllabus construction in light of such diversity.  The real challenge was embodied, in the various accents with which English was spoken in the classroom.  The students had to learn the humility to listen to one another, and even at times to use French and Spanish to help each other learn the terminology of academic moral theology.  But the patience required was not simply a pedagogical one or an exercise of charity.  The embodied accents also became a summons to interrogate and challenge the unacknowledged assumptions of linguistic privilege, namely, the assumption that "particular accents betrayed a lack of intellectual capacity or a preference for certain values over others," even indicating something of the moral comportment of their possessors.
            The presence of the global South here in North America, Carmona argued, entails much more than acquiring a skill set of techniques to manage such diversity.  Rather, it demands that our institutions, and even the academy itself, transform themselves in light of their engagement with the embodied voice of the Others.  Carmona deftly illustrated this by questioning the widespread assumption that French is accepted in theology graduate programs as an academic language, but not Spanish, by offering a part of his paper in both languages.  It is assumed that Spanish may be pastorally useful to help teach a linguistically diverse student body, but there is scant realization that there is academic work being done in Spanish.  This hurts the discipline's ability to understand scholarship that lies not only beyond but within our borders.  Carmona concluded by reflecting upon and extending Bryan Massingale's previous summons to a "Copernican revolution" in theological ethics.  Carmona stated that such a revolution demanded that Latino/a theologians see themselves as a "majority," a stance that entails both prophetic interventions in view of their under-represented state in the academy and the church, and self-confident contributions that befit their reality as the at times majority presence in the church.
            Anne Arabome's response offered a reflection that focused on upon pedagogical text selection, but pedagogical approaches and attitudes rooted in her identity as an African woman.  She described how she taught a theological anthropology course here in North American with a largely white undergraduate enrollment.  She made three assumptions in the course.  First, she would teach and relate to the students as a "family," an image central in African cultures.  Concretely, this meant that she and the students engaged one another "with the idea that each one has something to contribute."  Second, she made no distinction between the sacred and the profane, as such a distinction is foreign to the African mind set.  Finally, she prioritized formation "rather than grading and intellectual production from students," informing them on the first day that they were all "A" students "because they are made in the image and likeness of God."  She then offered several comments from the end of the semester student evaluations that eloquently and movingly revealed the deep transformation many had experienced through engaging a form of pedagogy that is rare in the North American university.  In sum, the students reported not only a depth of theological understanding but of a lived encounter with faith itself, facilitated by cross-culturally rooted pedagogy.
            Arabome concluded her presentation by focusing on some systemic challenges that cross-cultural engagement poses of US academic institutions.  Among these are practices that assume that naturalized American citizens are not fully equal to native-born citizens.  Such practices include restricting financial assistance (e.g., TA-ships) to American citizens and requiring proof of English language proficiency of foreign students - in both cases not acknowledging the American identity of those who are naturalized citizens.  The changing demography of the US requires a fundamental rethinking of who is meant by and included in the adjective "American."  She concluded with the summons, "In the age of globalization, dialogue, pedagogy, and hermeneutics are intercultural."
            The lively discussion that followed from the 55 attendees took up questions regarding what virtues may be required for internationally engaged pedagogy, what counts as legitimate cross-cultural dialogue, who is meant or included in the designation of "cross-cultural" or "global," similarities and differences between the challenges posed by the voices of the global South and those stemming from race critique and feminism in the US, and caveats and opportunities for converting students and faculty alike in U.S. contexts. Thanks to committee member Bryan Massingale for convening the session and summarizing its contents. In early June of 2016 the interest group will convene its final session of the three-year term; stay tuned early next year for a description of the panel and please plan to join us there in San Juan, Puerto Rico for the convention, where the theme will be justice and mercy.

Fulbright Scholar Report

Dr. Nontando Hadebe

         The Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence program provides grants for US universities to host international scholars to teach for a semester or academic year.  This past spring, two members of CTEWC took advantage of this grant program: South African based theologian Dr. Nontando Hadebe spent the spring semester at Emmanuel College in Boston (January-May 2015), hosted by Dr. Laurie Johnston of the Theology department. The two scholars team-taught a course called Gender, Religion and HIV/AIDS in Southern Africa, and Dr. Hadebe also taught a course in Global Christianity.  
          Dr. Hadebe lived in an on-campus apartment and was very involved in campus life. Her presence was a wonderful opportunity for Emmanuel students to learn about theological ethics from an African feminist perspective as well as the contribution of African Christianity in its plurality to global Christianity. The vibrancy of African Spirituality lies not only in exuberant worship but in creative responses to extreme social challenges. It is here that Africa has gifted the world with radical faith based responses such as Kairos Documents and Truth and Reconciliation Commission as well as significant roles played by church leaders in resolving conflicts such as the Catholic Church in Mozambique.
         It was interesting to connect some of the issues in Africa with similar challenges in the US and across the world particularly the status of women and sexual minorities.  Our common humanity and dignity is the bridge that connects us across our differences. The classroom was transformed into a global encounter! In their evaluation reports many of the students expressed appreciation and joy for the opportunity to learn more about African scholarship and expressions of Christianity. And in addition to her teaching and other commitments at Emmanuel, Dr Hadebe also had opportunities to engage with different forums. She gave a paper at the Annual Meeting of the Society of Christian Ethics, as well as a public lecture in Boston. She also participated in monthly meetings of Fulbright scholars in the Boston area. On a lighter note she survived the heaviest snowfall in the history of Boston! She has now returned to her home institution, St. Augustine College in Johannesburg, South Africa, enriched by her experience and profoundly grateful to Emmanuel College for this truly amazing experience.  
        Both Dr. Johnston and Dr.Hadebe would be happy to be a resource for any scholars or institutions considering the Fulbright grant, which is described here:

CTEWC News: We welcome new Forum Leader for Asia Region

Hoa Trung Dinh, S.J., Australia

Hoa Trung Dinh, S.J. teaches moral theology and bioethics at the Catholic Theological College of the University of Divinity, Melbourne.  Trained as a medical doctor (MBBS 1993) prior to pursuing academic works, Hoa receivedhis STL from Weston Jesuit School of Theology (2008) and a PhD from Boston College (2013).    He is a Jesuit priest of the Australian Province.


New Publications!

Aldo Marcelo Cáceres Roldán, OSA, 
Una ética urgente. La defensa de la vida y de la dignidad humana, PPC-Cono Sur, Buenos Aires, 2015.

Call for papers

Asian Horizons, Dharmaram Journal of Theology

Vol. 9, No. 4, December 2015

Call for Papers

Laudato Si'


Laudato Si', the first encyclical that addresses the environment, is already considered as one of the most significant encyclicals of modern times. Not only Catholics, but the society as a whole has acclaimed it as a ground-breaking document. December 2015 issue of Asian Horizons invites articles on Laudato Si'. The articles can be on any particular topic or theme that the encyclical presents, or reflections on specific issues based on the encyclical.


Suggested Topics (only recommendations, not exhaustive):

- What is Happening to Our Common Home?: The Magnitude of Ecological Crisis

- Climate: A Common Good

- Global Inequality and the Environment

- Preferential Option for the Poor and Option for the Earth

- Interrelatedness of all Creation

- Human Roots of Ecological Crisis

- Integral Ecology

- Care for Our Common Home: Global and Local Policies and Action

- Ecological Education

- Ecological Spirituality

- Care for the Earth and Pastoral Ministry

- Laudato Si': Ecumenical and Interreligious Dimensions

- Laudato Si': An Asian Response

- Laudato Si': An Indian Response

- Laudato Si': Challenges for the Present and for the Future


As usual, we welcome other articles on any area of theological interest and research.

Please send your articles (4500-5000 words, including the footnotes) at the latest by 31 October 2015. Kindly include the abstract of the article in 150-200 words and a short resumč of the author in 100-150 words.

Other regular items: "New Scholars": Abstract of doctoral theses (recently defended and not yet published); book reviews.

For submitting the articles and for more details: Shaji George Kochuthara (editor-in-chief): kochuthshaji@gmail.com


N.B. Kindly forward this to your friends and colleagues.


[Asian Horizons, published from DVK, is a forum for theological reflection in the Asian context marked by economic poverty, cultural diversity and religious plurality. Although the focus is on theological reflection in the context of Asia, we also address theological developments and concerns of the universal Church and try to dialogue with the Church in various contexts. Hence we welcome authors from all over the world. Asian Horizons was launched in 2007 as a biannual. From 2011 it is published as a quarterly. We have an editorial board consisting of members from India, other Asian countries and other continents.]



Asian Horizons, Dharmaram Journal of Theology

Themes: 2015-2016

2015: Vol. 9

March: After 50 Years: Ongoing Renewal of Moral Theology

June: After 50 Years: Apostolate of Lay People

September: After 50 Years: Church of the Future

December: Luadato Si'


2016: Vol. 10

March: Ethics, Theology and Technology

June: Asia's Women Theologians

September: Asian Christian Heritage

December: Conscience



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