News of the extended network of faculty, alumni, students, visiting researchers, and mission partners is regularly updated, and some of the big ideas or major events in Global Christianity are covered in the CGCM News.

Call for Papers: Ecology and Mission

Anabaptist Witness

In an age when environmental disasters and political discussions of climate change are a daily presence in the news cycle, the voice and actions of the church related to environmental issues has become even more urgent. Many mission efforts, both local and international, address environmental issues including climate change, environmental justice, and sustainable agriculture. Theologians, historians and biblical scholars are also increasingly concerned with understanding the relationship between people, the land, and God in Christian tradition. Anabaptists and Mennonites have a long history of sustaining both the land and their communities through agriculture, and scholars are increasingly relating Anabaptist peace traditions to caring for and restoring the environment.

There are many forms of mission both local and global that connect to the restoration and protection of the natural world. Communities and dedicated activists are working to address environmental racism and prevent further destruction of their neighborhoods and landscapes. Ecological factors play a role in mission to communities throughout the world, as mission workers recognize that the wellbeing of God’s people is bound up with the wellbeing of the created world.

Anabaptist Witness invites submissions on ecology and mission for the April 2018 issue. Possible questions to address include the following. How do particular congregations, communities, and mission agencies engage in mission that addresses climate change or environmental justice? What does the Bible say about the relationship between people and the land and how does this relate to mission work in the current era? How does peacemaking relate to addressing environmental destruction? How might Anabaptist and Mennonite theologies of creation support environmental initiatives today? How might Anabaptist and Mennonite theologies of creation support environmental initiatives today? Ecumenical and interreligious perspectives on these and related topics are welcome, insofar as they connect to Anabaptist and Mennonite mission.

Because this journal is an exchange among peoples from around the world, from laity and pastors to academics and administrators, submissions are welcome from a variety of genres including sermons, photo-essays, reflections, interviews, biographies, poems, and academic papers.

Guidelines and deadline:

Submissions on this topic are welcome through October 1, 2017. Through a peer review process, we will choose 34 shorter articles of approximately 1,500 words in length, and 56 academic papers of no more than 7,500 words (including footnotes). Image-based submissions are also subject to peer review. Please familiarize yourself with our editorial process and technical requirements at http://www.anabaptistwitness.org/guidelines/. If you have an idea you would like feedback on, you are welcome to submit a one-page abstract by September 1, 2017. Address all correspondence to Sarah Werner, Issue Editor, guesteditor@anabaptistwitness.org

Anabaptist Witness is a publication of Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary, Mennonite Church Canada, and Mennonite Mission Network.

Application: Global Ecumenical Theological Institute

By driJune 23rd, 2017in Announcements, Opportunities

Students may apply to attend the Global Ecumenical Theological Institute (GETI), which will meet in Tanzania March 8-13, 2018. The theme of the conference will be “Translating the Word. Transforming the World.”

GETI is an ecumenical, global, short-term study and exposure programme, this time meeting in accompaniment with the World Mission Conference. GETI seeks to convey vibrancy and encourage young people to become ecumenically committed and conversant ambassadors in their local and regional contexts, as well as on the global level.

GETI 2018 is designed for approximately 120 advanced students in theology and related academic fields with an interest in gaining insights into the ecumenical movement’s current debates on understanding and practicing mission in various regions of the world.

Students will explore together how the gospel is translated into their different cultures and contexts, and also reflect on ways in which they feel called and moved by the Spirit to transform the world. A blended study process will begin with an e-learning phase a couple of months prior to the event.

Applications are due July 31, 2017.

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The Beginning of the East African Revival

Kinuka
Yosiya Kinuka driving a motorcycle

The spirituality of the East African Revival took a distinctive shape in its early years. In a recently published article in the International Bulletin of Mission Research on “The Conversion of Yosiya Kinuka and the Beginning of the East African Revival,Daewon Moon argues that the revivalist spirituality was prompted by the conversion of Yosiya Kinuka, an African member of the Ruanda Mission medical staff. Highlighting the African initiative in the revival, this article critically assesses previous historical analyses of religious conversion in the colonial context and argues that the conversion of Kinuka served as an archetype that shaped the character of the revival as primarily a conversionist movement.

Call for Papers: Hearing God’s Voice in Methodist Mission

On April 8-10, 2019, Global Ministries of The United Methodist Church, in collaboration with Candler School of Theology of Emory University in Atlanta, GA, USA, will host a world conference of scholars and leaders to celebrate Methodism’s mission heritage and look to the future of mission among the people called Methodists. The conference will be called “Answering the Call: Hearing God’s Voice in Methodist Mission, Past, Present, and Future,” and will be held in Atlanta, GA, USA, at the Emory University Conference Center Hotel.

The dates for the conference will coincide with the 200th anniversary of the founding of the Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church (one of the forerunner denominations to The United Methodist Church). On April 5, 1819, the Missionary Society was formed in New York City to support the mission work of John Stewart, a freeborn African-American, among the Wyandotte Native American people of Ohio. This group, whose creation was affirmed by the 1820 General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, was the first denomination-wide mission society for Methodists in the United States.

Since that beginning nearly two hundred years ago, The United Methodist Church; its predecessor denominations (including the Methodist Episcopal Church, Methodist Episcopal Church, South, Methodist Protestant Church, Evangelical Association, United Brethren in Christ, Methodist Church, and Evangelical United Brethren); autonomous Methodist, United, and Uniting churches historically related to these bodies; and other sibling denominations have had a long and rich history of mission. This history includes active participation in mission by Methodists from Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, Europe, and North America.

As part of this history, Methodists from all continents, from many nationalities, races, and ethnicities, both women and men, lay and ordained, have organized, supported, and engaged in mission to bring new Christians to faith; start new churches, schools, hospitals, clinics, and printing presses; empower women; train leaders in society; conduct medical missions; work for justice; alleviate suffering; build peace; and witness to the kingdom of God.

Instructions for conference proposals:

Scholars from any field with reference to mission, including church history, biblical studies, evangelism, and theology, are invited to submit proposals. Scholars affiliated with The United Methodist Church and its sibling denominations worldwide are particularly encouraged to apply.

Scholars may submit proposals for individual papers, paper sessions, workshops, or panel discussions. Paper sessions, workshops, and panel discussions should fit within an hour and a half format. For each proposed paper session, workshop, panel discussion, or individual paper, please submit a 250-word abstract and a short bio for each person involved. Proposals for paper sessions should include a 250-word abstract for each individual paper as well.

Papers, paper sessions, workshops, and panel discussions may address any aspect of mission in the Methodist tradition: past, present, or future. Papers are, however, especially encouraged on the following topics:

  •  In what ways has Methodist mission been expressed? In other words, in what ways have Methodist people and organizations “done” mission? What ways will mission be done or expressed in the future?
  • What factors have influenced or shaped how Methodists have thought about and done mission? How have, for instance, the Bible, theology, culture, and race shaped the way in which mission has been expressed?
  • Who or what have been the means or vehicles for mission? What roles have various categories of Methodists played in mission? What structures and organizations, in the local church and beyond, have facilitated the advancement of Methodist mission? Who or what will be the means for mission in the century ahead?
  • What have been the outcomes of Methodist mission work? How has this mission shaped the world and various churches worldwide? In what ways is United Methodist mission currently seeking to transform the church and world?
  • How has mission served as a source of unity or disunity for the church? What are the ways mission has provided a context to bring together (or divide) separate parts of the Wesleyan family and/or the universal church? What has been the relationship between mission and ecumenism?

Please submit all materials by September 1, 2018, to Dr. David W. Scott at dscott@umcmission.org. Submitted papers will be reviewed by a committee of scholars. Selected presenters will receive free conference registration, and some travel grants will be available for international scholars.

Hindu-Christian Dialogue

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National Council of Churches Announces New Dialogue

The National Council of Churches USA and The Guibord Center – Religion Inside Out are pleased to announce their intention to explore the formation of a  new Hindu-Christian Dialogue.  The Christian convener of this dialogue, national in scope, will be Dr. Jesudas Athyal of the Mar Thoma Church, and Visiting Researcher at the Center for Global Christianity & Mission.

The direction of the new dialogue will be set by the participants, though it is envisioned that they will include theological matters as well as issues pertaining to conflict and peace.  Introductory meetings with Buddhist and Hindu leaders in the western United States will take place in the coming months with the intention of beginning the dialogues in late 2017 or early 2018.

Torbet Prize for Best Essay in Any Area of Baptist History

The American Baptist Historical Society is receiving submissions for the Torbet Prize. The winner will receive $500 and have his or her paper published in the American Baptist Quarterly. No submission may already be published elsewhere, it should be 25 pages or less in length (excluding notes), and written in accordance with the Chicago Manual of Style. Entries can be sent before September 1, 2017 to:

American Baptist Historical Society
Mercer University
3001 Mercer University Dr.
Atlanta, GA  30341

Electronic submissions are to be sent to ABHS@abhsarchives.org

 

Missions, Religion, and Culture

Brazilian scholars Carlos André Silva de Moura, Eliane Moura da Silva, and Harley Abrantes Moreira, have recently edited a volume on Missões, Religião e Cultura. The volume consists of two roughly equal parts. The first section examines Catholic missions, administration, and intellectuals. The latter portion is devoted to Catholic and Protestant missions in Brazil, Angola, and Mozambique. The introduction frames the volume with an essay by Dana Robert, “World Christianity as a Women’s Movement,” now translated into Portuguese.

Sprunt Lectures 2017: Cross-Cultural Friendship and Mission

For over 100 years, Union Presbyterian Seminary has hosted the James Sprunt Lectures, which invites speakers of outstanding quality to the seminary to discuss aspects of Christian thought and work. This year, UPS invited Dana Robert to deliver four lectures on “Cross-Cultural Friendship and Christian Mission: History and Practices.” Robert showcases how relationships, sometimes the most difficult to codify aspects of mission, have transformative power.

Going Native or Remaining Foreign?

A conference on Catholic missionaries as Local Agents in Asia in the 17th and 18th centuries will happen in Rome May 30–June 1, 2017. Organized by the Deutsches Historiches Institut in Rom, École Française de Rome, Istituto Svizzero di Roma, Abteilung für Neuere Geschichte des Historischen Instituts der Universität Bern, the conference aims to assess missionaries roles in various social environments, rather than simply examining their place in different countries. Thus, the conference is divided into studies of missionary activity in urban, court, household, and rural settings.

Eugenio Menegon will present a paper on “The Habit that Hides the Monk: Missionary Fashion Strategies at the Imperial Court in Early Modern China.”

American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Dana-office-2015-2Dr. Dana L. Robert, Truman Collins Professor of World Christianity and History of Mission and Director of the Center for Global Christianity and Mission at the School of Theology, has been elected as a member of the 237th class of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences on April 12, 2017. Founded in 1780, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences is one of the country’s oldest learned societies and independent policy research centers. This is one of the highest and most prestigious honors that a scholar in the arts and sciences can attain. Dr. Robert will be inducted into the Academy in a ceremony in Cambridge, MA on October 7, 2017.