Category: Faculty Associates
On June 19th, Professor Rady Roldan-Figueroa will be in Madrid, Spain presenting his research on “Anticlericalismo, filosemitismo e identidad prostestate en el Carrascón.” Details about the conference can be found below.
The Historical Society received funding from the John Templeton Foundation to explore Religion and Innovation in Human Affairs. Research in various fields was conducted from 2011 to 2014, and the results were often counterintuitive. Counter to popular images of religion as a conservative force that regularly inhibits creativity, scholars described a more dynamic religious impulse. Dana Robert, Director of the Center for Global Christianity & Mission, participated in the project, arguing that Protestant missions were a major source of social innovation and democratic nationalism at the beginning of the twentieth-century. A preview of her research and that of others, may be found in: What Connection is There, if any, Between Christianity and Innovation?
Since 1988, Dana Robert has served on the Board of the Institute for the Study of American Evangelicals. Over the years, the ISAE produced important literature on a number of topics, including the relationship between American Evangelicalism and missions. At the end of October, the ISAE gathered for the final time. They both looked to the past, and what the institute has accomplished, as well as to the future and what horizons are yet to be explored.
Dana L. Robert, CGCM director, presented, “Twentieth-Century Mission Studies and the Narrative of ‘World Christianity’.’” The audio file is a fascinating historical study on the rise of the term, “World Christianity.”
Dr. Elizabeth Parsons, Lecturer in Religion and Development and a Resident Scholar with the CGCM, taught an exciting course this spring on the intersection of mission and development. The course, called Enacting Mission Through NGO and FBO Work, covered a variety of issues related to work in non-governmental, non-profit, and faith-based organizations. In the first part of the course, students gained a footing on the history and current functioning of NGOs and FBOs. Thereafter, they not only engaged critically with values and assumptions embedded in the business of development and NGO related work, they also learned practical skills important for the vocation, from money matters to navigating the rough waters of cross-cultural interactions.
The last part of the course engaged future contexts, opportunities, and challenges for NGO and FBO service and leadership in the 21st century. To help with these questions, Dr. Parsons organized a panel for the class, with the support of the CGCM, and invited the STH community to attend. Panelists were chosen for their connections with STH, for their own spiritual and ethical commitment to service work, and to show how theological education would be helpful for a range of service vocations. The panelists included STH alum Rob Gordon, Executive Director of United Way of Kennebec Valley; John Lindamood, Director of Resident Services in the Cambridge Housing Authority, who holds an M.Div. from Harvard and has made presentations at STH in the past; and Paula Kline, Executive Director of the Montreal City Mission, who oversees an organization that is a contextual partner of STH.
The panel, “Enacting Mission Through Non-Profit and Faith-Based Service Work in Unpredictable Times,” took place on April 11, 2014. Dr. Parsons introduced the class and each guest spoke of the paths that brought them to non-profit work, addressed how they integrate spiritual formation and commitment into their vocation, and in the question and answer sessions that followed, shared practical ideas about how to get into non-profit work, and what kind of skills are important.
Theological and pastoral education as laying the foundation for work in social justice and instilling compassionate values, working in partnership, and fundraising tips were just some of the key themes that emerged from the panel and discussion. The STH will look forward to future teaching and discussion on the intersection of mission and development.
The 2013 Sixteenth Century Studies Conference was held from October 24-27 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Professor Roldán-Figueroa served as Theology Track Director for the conference. The theology track had a total of sixteen panels. Roldán-Figueroa organized eight panels, and chaired three of them. One of the panelists was BU STH Professor Claire Wolfteich, whose paper was entitled “Spiritual Guidance for those ‘In the World': A Theology of Lay Spiritual Practice in Francis de Sales and Jane de Chantal.” Roldán-Figueroa presented a paper related to the missionary work of Discalced Franciscans in the Philippines, “Enlisting Saints for the Cause of Catholic Missions: Marcelo de Ribadeneira’s Historia de las Islas del Archipiélago Filipino (Barcelona, 1601).” The session was sponsored by REFO500 and VU University Amsterdam. The other two panelists were Professor Sabine Hiebsch from VU University Amsterdam and Professor Tarald Rasmussen from the University of Oslo” You can see picture of the panelists here.
Prof. Rady Roldan-Figueroa gave a presentation at the Center for Southwest Research and the Latin American and Iberian Institute of the University of New Mexico when he was there in June as Greenleaf Scholar. It dealt with the connections between the Provincia of San Diego of the Discalced Franciscans in Mexico, the Provincia de San Gregorio of the same order in Manila, and the representation of Japanese Christianity in 17th, 18th and 19th century New Spain. You can download the full presentation here.
The CGMC was delighted by the visit of Rev. Dr. Fohle Lygunda, Head of the Department of Missiology at International Leadership University (ILU) – Burundi, on June 14. Dr. Lygunda and Dr. Dana Robert discussed a possible collaboration for the Dictionary of African Christian Biography (DACB), which was transferred to Boston University in 2012. Dr. Lygunda previously worked as a Project Luke Fellow for the DACB at Overseas Ministries Study Center (OMSC) in New Haven, CT. He also wrote an article on Central Africa for the Atlas of Global Christianity: 1910-2010. Under his leadership, ILU-Burundi launched a master’s program in Missiology, in which doctoral student Daewon Moon has served as a visiting lecturer since 2012.
Thanks to EMU for permission to post it!