Welcome to the FIRST

The newsletter of Catholic Theological Ethics in the World Church
July 2016


Dear Friends
On July 8, 2006, 400 moral theologians from roughly 55 countries met at Padua for the first ever international congress of moral theologians, under the banner of Catholic Ethicists in the World Church.
Now 10 years later, what difference did that meeting make???  What difference did it make to you personally, socially, institutionally???
I would love to hear from you.  Write to me  james.keenan.2@bc.edu and tell me what difference did Padua make (Even if you weren't there!).  We will post your comments in our September FIRST. 
In order to jog your memory of Padua, check out the program we had: http://files.ctewc.gethifi.com/conferences/padua/Padua_program.pdf
In the meantime, here are some Forum essays on Padua's legacy by Mary Jo Iozzio and Tom Massaro, Agnes Brazal, and Jorge Ferrer.  The FORUM closes with an essay by Margaret Ssebunya, the only lay woman among the eight African women in the PhD program.
There are also reports from Africa, Asia, and North America.
Finally there's Photos... of Padua.  If you want to see more, check them out here http://www.catholicethics.com/conferences/padua
In the meantime, let me hear from you

Opening Reception

Three Generations of Moralists


Opening Reception

Featured Forum Articles:
Thomas Massaro, S.J. and Mary Jo Iozzio, Padova: Ten Years Later and...

Jorge Ferrer, A diez ańos del encuentro de Padua: Tareas pendientes para la teología moral.

Margaret Ssebunya, Strengthening a pastoral response to the ecological crisis through existing spaces within the Church.
North American Report
By: Kristin Heyer
North American Report

For the last three years, the  "Beyond Trento North American Moral Theology in a Global Church " interest group at the Catholic Theological Society of America has probed the ways in which understanding participants' work as taking place within a global church should impact North American theological discourse and ethical praxis. Just as CTEWC has sponsored regional conferences since its international meeting in Trento, Italy in 2010--in Nairobi, Berlin, Krakow, Bangalore and Bogotá--this interest group has functioned to sustain a North American regional conversation.

Here is an overview of this year's presentations and conversation: Jeremy V. Cruz of St. John's University (NY) began the session with his presentation on "Traversing Merciless American Borders: Transnational Dialogue Between Colonized and Diasporic Peoples." He  argued that empire and its strategies of racism and coloniality constitute the central logics of oppression in this hemisphere, and called for Catholic moral dialogues that challenge consequent unjust suffering black diasporic and non-black indigenous communities endure. He identified two dominant and problematic trajectories in Catholic moral dialogue in the contemporary United States: one that attempts to mediate between its "culture wars" in hopes of insulating the Church from partisan electoral politics without recognizing the mechanisms of imperial power, and a second that pursues global dialogue in inter-national rather than trans-national terms, ignoring transnational subjects and downplaying the role of the inter-national social order in their oppression.

In response, he forwarded three characteristics of more adequate modes of dialogue. First, moral dialogues should be primarily be missiological rather than ecclesiological, rooted in a social praxis aimed at survival and liberation from fundamental social causes of human oppression. Second, dialogues should foreground the voices of subordinated groups, which entails many relinquishing a seat at the table. Third, transformative cross-cultural and transnational dialogues already underway by diasporic and colonized peoples must be supported. Here he emphasized the insufficiency of dominant incrementalist or liberal idealist strategies. Drawing on critical race theory he suggested conventional attempts at achieving common ground among dominant groups should not be the goal, but rather building subaltern coalitions' capacity to make (material and structural) demands on those who oppress them.

In "Our Global Common Humanity: Whose Universals? Whose Particulars? (In Bioethical Discourse)," Shawnee Daniels Sykes of 
Mt. Mary University (WI)cautioned against the dangers of attempting to transcend cultural differences by employing mainstream, universally binding Western bioethical principles. She underscored shortcomings of standard ethical principlism in some cross cultural circumstances and, by recounting the history of the Tuskegee syphyllus study alongside the Nuremberg Code and the Declaration of Helsinki, made clear the glaringly exploitative risks of such inattention to particulars.

She then considered what it would it entail to understand Western bioethics from the perspective of particularism that takes cultural differences seriously. Drawing upon Bernard Lonergan's method, she argued for the significant benefits gained from attentive, patient, effective engagement with the other about bioethical concerns through the use of open-ended questions. She warned that without this shift, Western bioethics risks reproducing white supremacy in its theories, methods, practices, and even codes. She suggested converting the principles adopted by UNESCO in its Universal Declaration of Bioethics and Human Rights into open-ended questions to more adequately approximate global minimal standards in biomedical research (e.g., information-seeking questions, situational questions, cultural questions, ecumenical questions, racial questions, gender questions). She deemed UNESCO's the document that best combines respect for cultural diversity with the standard principles of bioethics.

In response, Kristin Heyer or Boston College (MA) expressed gratitude for the speakers' emphases on the significant ways in which "ethics from below" contests not only the adequacy of reified principles, but dominant modes' reinscription of power. She noted migration ethics instructs that engaging diasporic, transnational and international voices need not be mutually exclusive, and how, taken together, they illuminate epistemological limits of Catholic theological ethics. She indicated how dialogues across borders expose the limits of conventional scholarship and syllabi (or flattened understandings of membership) but also sustain vocational affinities across difference. Encountering colleagues raising voices in classrooms and in civil society to combat structures and ideologies that erode the respect due women, for example, offers concrete hope and existential courage for reversing pervasive trends across diverse contexts.

Finally drawing upon the analogy of "desire paths" in landscape architecture, she suggested transformative dialogue and disruptive accompaniment open horizons where well paved disciplinary paths do not yet lead. Hence, walking away from a chiefly northern paradigm requires cultivating institutional virtues that facilitate our desire paths (e.g., rethinking what count as scholarly theological languages or legitimate coauthorship or assessable pedagogies). The discussion that followed considered how scholarly footnotes, guest lecture invitations and even course titles function to constrain or empower in these veins.

The session concluded with the launch of the fourth book in the CTEWC series, Living with(out) Borders: Catholic Theological Ethics on the Migrations of Peoples (Orbis Press, 2016), by co-editor MT Dávila. This month Orbis is offering a 40% discount on all titles in the CTEWC book series in honor of our 10th anniversary. Order online 24/7  at www.orbisbooks.com  and get 40% off by entering Promo Code CTEWC during check out. Or call toll free 1-800-258-5838 Mon-Fri 8-4 Eastern time, or fax 914.941.7005.

Jeremy Cruz and Shawnee Daniels-Sykes engage with the audience about pedagogical strategies that better support transformative dialogue.

Co-editor MT Dávila launches the latest CTEWC volume from Orbis: 
Living with(out) Borders: Catholic Theological Ethics on the Migrations of Peoples, now available.
Jeremy V. Cruz of St. John's University (NY) presents at this year's CTSA on transnational dialogue between colonized and diasporic peoples.

Shawnee M. Daniels-Sykes of Mt. Mary University (WI) discusses the need for a bioethics from below at the "Beyond Trento" interest group at CTSA in San Juan, Puerto Rico. 

New Publication
Shaji George Kochuthara

News From Europe
Roman Globokar
Invitation to a Symposium on Life-ending Actions
On 15 and 16 July there will be an interdisciplinary symposium at the Eberhard Karls University Tübingen on the topic "Life-ending Actions. Ethics, Medicine and Law on the Limit of 'Killing' and 'Letting Die'. For further information, please see: www.uni-tuebingen.de/moraltheologie/symposium.
Report from the Annual Meeting of Polish moral theologians on the migration crisis in Europe (from Konrad Glombik)
During the annual meeting of the Association of Polish moral theologians which took place in Zakopane between 12 and 14 June 2016, a controversial problem of the migration crisis in Europe as a challenge for the Church in Poland was discussed. The conference showed that the voices of Polish moral theologians are diverse like the voices of the majority of Polish people, the issue is complex and political, discussions on this topic are controversial and solutions not easy.
The first part of the conference was dedicated to the description of the phenomenon of contemporary migration and the problem of migrant integration in the European countries. Janusz Balicki from the Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński University in Warsaw spoke about the history of migration, history of conflicts and social inequality. He stressed the lack of government migration policies, the aversion of the majority of Polish to immigrants and symbolic gestures of Pope Francis that indicate a Christian attitude towards migrants. Eugeniusz Sakowicz from the Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński Univeristy in Warsaw spoke about the problem of integration in the context of cultural and religious diversity in Europe. Cultural and religious diversity is a normal phenomenon in Western Europe and should be seen as a challenge for the society that can lead to the relativism or the reinforcement of the own identity. He spoke about the ways and possibilities of integration in the sense of tolerance and harmony and showed Jesus as a paradigm of dialogue and integration. Immigrants are an opportunity for Europeans to reconsider their cultural and religious identity and the value of life. In a controversial discussion, the threats to the European and national identity, political-economic causes of migration, the chance of dialogue and the need for a quiet discussion and clarification were brought up. The best and the most credible way of evangelisation in this context is to preach the Gospel with  humanitarian aid to people in need.
Krzysztof Kościelniak from the Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński University in Warsaw spoke about the perspectives and problems connected with the Muslim migration to Europe. In his speech, he stressed the diversity of migrants and Muslims. Among perspectives, he enumerated the positive effects on the job market, demography and international relations and among problems, he mentioned the threats for social systems, political destabilisation, cultural-religious traditions that oppose human rights and terrorism and the support of them. In Europe, some Muslims live in ghettos and some are integrated into the Western civilisation. Migration of Muslims is an unstoppable process and the challenge is to educate young generation for tolerance. The speech of Jerzy Gocko from the Catholic University in Lublin concerned the main dimensions of the theology of migration. In the Bible, migration is connected with candour and hospitality and in the Catholic social thought with the respect for the dignity of very human being, solidarity and justice. If those rights are violated, the man has a right to migration. The migration, by Gocko, is a necessary evil and should not lead to a bigger evil on the moral level. The crucial moral category for the evaluation of migration is responsibility. In the discussions, the phenomenon of conversion of Muslims to Christianity and the problem of responsible decision about migration were highlighted.
The issue of responsibility for people in need from the view of the category ordo caritatis was presented by Antoni Bartoszek from the Silesian University in Katowice. This category is currently in the situation when the needs are bigger than the possibilities of helping those in need. The question in this situation is whom we should help. In the answer to this question, Bartoszek mentioned that Christian love is rational and has an order. Based on the Noldin's order of values, he stressed that material help cannot be a threat to moral and spiritual values and should not lead to the destruction of own subjectivity. In the discussion, Irenuesz Mroczkowski criticised this Neo-Scholastic casuistry and took note of the ethics of virtue that can lead to the solution of this question. The problem of ordo caritatis is that this principle can lead to an easy justification for the lack of solidarity with migrants.
During the last session of the conference in Zakopane, two bishops spoke to the audience. The speech of bishop Grzegorz Ryś from Kraków was dedicated to the connection between mercy and refugees. Some people from other countries have been asking why the Catholic Church in Poland is against the refugees. Ryś paid attention to the fact that the only one discourse on this topic in Poland is the political one and sometimes the non-Christian position is declared as the position of the Catholic Church. The Catholic position on this issue is based on the understanding of dialogue and the Church as a sing of the unity of the human family according to Nostra aetatae and according to the Gospel on mercy (Mt: 25,31-46). Bishop Józef Wróbel from Lublin spoke about statements of the European Bishop Conferences on migrants. He presented the statement of German and the Polish Episcopacy. The voices of German bishops are characterised by the culture of openness and solidarity. They do not consider refugees a problem but rather a message of God and a sing of the time. The activities of the Catholic Church in Germany aimed at refugees include meeting with other people and accompany them, to provide advocacy and to be responsible for their social integration. The pastoral work for refugees consists in helping with their existential problems. The position of the Catholic Church in Poland is different from the German one because the influx of refugees to Poland is not that great. The Polish Episcopacy stressed the need of preventing the causes of migration and lately the need of helping people in war-torn countries. Wróbel spoke about some examples of help that the Catholic Church in Poland offered refugees. This question was a theme of the last session of the Polish Bishops Conference in Warsaw between 7 and 8 June 2016 that prepared a document on refugees. It says that the Catholics must help refugees and those persecuted and not only receive them but support them in their countries. The other suggestion is a humanitarian passage that consists in the preparation of apartments for people in need. Wróbel summarized that Poland is not closed for refugees but the Polish government first takes care of Polish people what is connected with the question of security.
The above mentioned discussions of Polish moral theologians on migration crisis in Europe had a theoretical character and did not bring any practical solutions. The conference showed different views of Polish theologians on this issue, the lack of information in the Church and insufficient formation work of the Church on the Christians positions of Catholics in Poland. The position of the Catholic Church in Poland can be summarized in the formulation that helping and supporting refugees is possible and necessary but rather in their home countries than on the way of receiving them in Europe.

Call For Papers
Asian Horizons, Dharmaram Journal of Theology
Vol. 10, No. 3, September 2016
Call for Papers
Christianity had its origin in Asia. In the first Millennium, Asia was the Centre of Christianity. Though Rome became the centre of Western Christianity and the See of the Papacy, all other major centres of the Church were in Asia; all the important Ecumenical Councils of the first Millennium took place in Asia; all the major doctrines were formulated in the Asian centres; most of the important theological schools were in Asia. September 2016 issue of Asian Horizons focuses mainly on the early history of indigenous Christianity in Asia. However, how this heritage continued to evolve also could be explored. Besides, how Christianity in Asia developed in dialogue with other Asian religions could be reflected upon.
Suggested Topics (only recommendations, not exhaustive):
- Indigenous Christianity in Asia
- Asian/Eastern Churches [Could be on a particular Church]
- Jewish Christianity
- Hellenistic Churches
- Syrian Churches
- Eastern Orthodox Churches
- Persian Church
- Missionary Expansion of the Nestorian Church
- Influence of Other Asian Religions on Christianity [could be also on the influence of any particular religion]
- Asian Church's Contribution to the Western Churches
- Christianity in India
- Christianity in China [or any other Asian country]
- Colonization and Asian Churches
- Ancient Asian Churches and Inculturation
- Asian Churches: Search for Identity
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 30 August 2016. Kindly include the abstract of the article in 150-200 words, 5-7 Keywords and a summary of the CV 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: 2016
2016: Vol. 10
March: Ethics, Theology and Technology
June: Asia's Women Theologians
September: Asian Christian Heritage
December: Conscience

Featured Discount on CTEWC Books!
Order online 24/7 at www.orbisbooks.com  and get 40% off by entering Promo Code CTEWC during check out.

Or call toll free 1-800-258-5838 Mon-Fri 8-4 Eastern time, or fax 914.941.7005.
New Job Listing

Positions in Latinoa Catholic Theologies and/or Black/Womanist Theologies

The Department of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of San Diego announces two open-rank, tenure-track positions in Latinoa Catholic theologies and/or Black/Womanist theologies. In addition to their theological specializations, ideal candidates will be conversant with environmental ethics; religion and culture; religion and race; religion and queer theory; or approaches to the Bible. Teaching responsibilities will include introductory theology courses as well as upper-division courses in the area(s) of specialization.

Applicants should hold a doctorate by the time of the appointment, September 2017. Commitment to excellence in undergraduate teaching and an active scholarly agenda are expected. The University of San Diego is a Roman Catholic university. The Department of Theology and Religious Studies is a diverse community of scholars who advance the teaching and study of religion with particular attention to fostering understanding of Catholic traditions. Information about the department is available at www.sandiego.edu/theo.

Applications should include a letter of intent and dossier, including CV, graduate school transcripts for those applying at the assistant professor level, three letters of reference, samples of scholarly work, and copies of teaching materials (e.g., syllabi, typical handouts, student evaluations). Please send all materials (hard copies only) to: Dr. Emily Reimer-Barry, Chair, Department of Theology and Religious Studies, University of San Diego, 5998 Alcalá Park, San Diego CA 92110-2492.  Applications should be complete by October 25, 2016. Preliminary interviews will be conducted at the AAR/SBL Annual Meetings Employment Center in San Antonio, November 19 and 20, on a pre-arranged basis.

The University of San Diego is an equal opportunity employer and seeks gender, cultural, and ethnic diversity in its administration, faculty, staff and student populations.

All candidates must register as applicants for this position at www.sandiego.edu/jobs, job number IRC 20854. Please, however, do not upload your application documents electronically via this site.  Rather, send hard copies as described above.

Contact: Dr. Emily Reimer-Barry: erb@sandiego.edu
Save The Date: 
The 42
nd Association for Moral Education Annual Conference
December 8-11, 2016

Hosted by the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Cambridge, USA, December 8 through 11, 2016. In partnership with Tufts University. 
Conference website:  http://ameconference2016.org 

The Conference theme will be: Civic engagement: a cultural revolution? The expanding definitions of 'civic' participation, their intersections with ethics, and the implications for education.

The challenges and innovations in civic engagement in and beyond formal education are gaining worldwide attention, as has become increasingly evident in recent AME meetings.  There are interesting links, synergies and dialogues among civics, ethics and moral development, including the significance of new media.

We are delighted to announce that the Kohlberg Memorial Lecture will be given by Dr Danielle Allen. Danielle Allen is Director of the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard University and professor in Harvard's Department of Government and Graduate School of Education. She is a political theorist who has published broadly in democratic theory, political sociology, and the history of political thought. Widely known for her work on justice and citizenship, and recently on civic and social media, Dr Allen is the author of numerous books. She ia member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Philosophical Society.

There will also be plenary sessions on the theme of the Conference with contributions from distinguished international scholars in the field


In This Issue
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Jim Keenan S.J.



Claudio Quintana