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: Dynamics of Indigenization

By driFebruary 23rd, 2019in Call for Papers, World Christianity

A Special Issue of the Journal of Presbyterian History

The Journal of Presbyterian History (JPH) invites submissions for a special issue on “The Dynamics of Indigenization”, which will consider the history of global Christian communities that arose within the Presbyterian and Reformed traditions or through contacts with Presbyterian missions.  This special issue will approach indigenization in terms of how communities adapted to local needs and conditions, or responded on the ground to governments, dominant faith groups, and broader societies.  In its thematic focus, it draws inspiration from the scholarship of the late Lamin Sanneh, who illuminated how Christianity “translated” into diverse cultures and how Christians engaged with peoples rooted in other religious traditions.  Articles should reflect original historical research and draw on Presbyterian or Reformed archives and sources.  The guest editors for this special issue are Bonnie Sue Lewis, Connie Shemo, and Heather J. Sharkey.

For more information on the Journal of Presbyterian History, see https://www.history.pcusa.org/history-online/publications/journal-presbyterian-history  Note that JPH favors articles that combine scholarly rigor with a clear and lively prose style.  Its target audience includes both professional historians and general educated readers.

Articles should range from 5,000 to 7,000 words, including notes.  The deadline is March 1, 2020.  Send submissions to jph@history.pcusa.org

II International Conference on Bartolomé de Las Casas

By driFebruary 15th, 2019in Announcements, World Christianity

The first International Conference, “Bartolomé de Las Casas, O.P.: History, Philosophy, and Theology in the Age of European Expansion,” held in 2016, was a landmark event for Lascasian scholarship. In response to this success, Providence College is pleased to invite interested scholars to our next gathering: “II International Conference on Bartolomé de Las Casas.” Moreover, the organizers programmed this Lascasian conference to coincide with the III International Conference on the History of the Order of Preachers in America, to be held July 17-19th (Wednesday-Friday) at Providence College. Participants can benefit from and contribute to the rich combination of unique research interests afforded by these two international gatherings. Below you will find the program for both conferences. For more information visit: Las Casas Conference. Or contact David Orique, O.P., Ph.D., Cynthia Folquer, O.P., Ph.D., or Rady Roldán-Figueroa, Th.D. at Lascasasconference2019@gmail.com or opamerica2019@gmail.com.

II International Conference on Bartolomé de Las Casas

Call for Papers: Yale-Edinburgh Group

By driJanuary 31st, 2019in Call for Papers, World Christianity

This is the official Call for Papers for the Yale-Edinburgh Group on the History of the Missionary Movement and World Christianity conference, which will be held at Yale Divinity School in New Haven, Connecticut June 27 – June 29, 2019.

We are accepting proposals for papers on any aspect of the conference theme: Diversity and Difference in Custom, Belief, and Practice in the History of Missions and World Christianity.

Please review the following webpage for an essay on the theme http://divinity-adhoc.library.yale.edu/Yale-Edinburgh/2019theme.htm

Please submit your paper proposal as an email attachment to Chris Anderson (christopher.j.anderson@yale.edu) by March 1, 2019. Your proposal should include your name, academic affiliation/status, and a one paragraph abstract of the proposed topic. If your proposal is accepted, you will be notified by March 15. Each paper will be limited to 20-25 minutes, followed by discussion. Full papers are welcomed in advance and, if received by June 25, will be available for download by conference participants.

Preliminary information about the meeting is available at http://divinity-adhoc.library.yale.edu/Yale-Edinburgh/2019y-einfo.htm

If you plan to attend the conference, please submit the following pre-registration formhttps://web.library.yale.edu/divinity/yale-edinburgh/2019-registration-form

If you need a letter of invitation in order to obtain a visa or institutional funding, please indicate this on the registration form.The registration deadline is April 30, 2019.

Participation in the meeting is limited to members of the Yale-Edinburgh Group, which consists de facto of the members of the “Missions” listserv.  If you know of people who may be interested in participating in the conference but are not members of the listserv, please ask them to contact me.

Information about a small number of fellowships sponsored by the Yale Divinity Library’s David M. Stowe Fund for Mission Research will be forthcoming next week. These fellowships are available to cover travel and accommodations expenses of early career scholars who wish to attend the conference and spend some time at the Yale Divinity Library doing research.

World Christianities Essay Prize

By driJanuary 31st, 2019in Call for Papers, World Christianity
Submissions are now open for the new World Christianities Essay Prize 2019

The Journal of Ecclesiastical History is pleased to announce a new World Christianities Essay Prize of £500, funded in part by a generous donation from the Cambridge Centre for Christianity Worldwide. The prize will be awarded each year to the author of an original research article on any subject relating to the history of Christianity outside Europe and North America since the year 700. Contributions are welcome from any historical subdiscipline and with any chronological or geographical focus within those parameters. Previously published work and items under consideration by other journals will not be eligible. Contributions will be assessed anonymously and are open to any author regardless of seniority or background. Entries from junior scholars are warmly encouraged.

The judges will be seeking to award the prize to an essay which displays rigorous and groundbreaking research, effectively communicated, and of significance to the wider discipline. The winning submission will be published as an article, normally in the following April issue of the Journal, and the authors of other high-quality submissions may also be invited to publish in the Journal. The judges reserve the right not to make an award in the event that no submission meets the required standard.

Submissions should be prepared in accordance with the journal’s style guide and should not exceed 8,000 words, including notes.

The closing date for submissions is 31 March 2019, and the outcome of the competition will be announced in September 2019. Submissions should be sent as email attachments, with ‘World Christianities Prize’ in the subject line, to Mrs Mandy Barker at jeh@robinson.cam.ac.uk.

Exemplary articles on World Christianities published in the journal to date are freely available to download here.

In Praise of Greatness: Nimi Wariboko and Africa’s Leading Public Intellectuals

Nimi Wariboko is featured in a new book on Africa’s leading public intellectuals and living legends. The book, In Praise of Greatness, by the famous historian Professor Toyin Falola of the University of Texas chronicles the life and scholarship of Africans who have made substantive contributions to knowledge. Wariboko is cited as one of Africa’s intellectual pioneers.

The back cover explains: In Praise of Greatness, employing poems and prose, pays homage to those African scholars, artists, and public intellectuals who have been exemplary in developing significant ideas and institutional legacies with far-reaching political, social, and cultural impact. Here are remarkable lives of dedicated service that have transformed society, extended the frontiers of knowledge, preserved values, and offered unique perspectives that replace universalism with pluriversalism. In twenty-two chapters that deploy dynamic poetics, distinct cultural tools, and rich traditions, the book presents multiple global-local biographies of preeminent scholars, living legends, and intellectual giants of Africa and its diaspora. Through individual stories, cumulative analyses demonstrate the existence and elaboration of an ontological and epistemic infrastructure that embodies the powerful paradigms that are essential to attaining progress, promoting ethical scholarship, and presenting distinguished Africans to the outside world. The book argues for the maintenance of strong academic traditions and new social thinking beyond patriarchy, as well as more serious attention to poetic and artistic creativity in surviving, navigating, and transforming the varying forces of modernity and globalization with meticulous and sustained attention to local needs and contexts. In Praise of Greatness advances the agenda of nation building by showcasing the formidable works and enduring genius of prominent individuals who have discovered pathways to optimal outcomes for themselves and others through myriad heroic efforts and honorable relationships of generosity and trust.  In Praise of Greatness seeks to inspire intellectual productivity in an emergent generation of scholars; to provide a unique lens for interpreting the past and present; and to promote a collective narrative around African development.

Nimi Wariboko is the Walter G. Muelder Professor of Social Ethics at the Boston University School of Theology and a Faculty Associate of the Center for Global Christianity and Mission.

Wariboko Living Legend

 

Global Ecumenism

By driJanuary 17th, 2019in Alumni Profiles and News

In December 2018, Rev. Dr. Casely Essamuah (’03), the Secretary of the Global Christian Forum, had an audience with Pope Francis at the Vatican. One of the books that Essamuah is handing the Holy Father is a copy of his dissertation, Genuinely Ghanaian: A History of the Methodist Church, 1961-2000.

Call for Papers: African Language, Literature, Music and Prayer Repertoires

By driJanuary 14th, 2019in Call for Papers

Nagel Legon International Conference 2019
Call for Papers:
African Language, Literature, Music and Prayer Repertoires: Exploring Indigenous Epistemologies and Spiritualities

Date: July 24th26th, 2019
Venue: University of Ghana, Legon
Contact/Queries: nagel.legon.conference@gmail.com

BACKGROUND

Christianity in Africa offers an abundance of linguistic resources that serve as a wellspring for African spirituality and values. However, while current scholarship that engages African Christianity often focuses on the rapid growth and diverse expressions of the faith on the continent and in the African diaspora, the role of language, music, film, and literature as significant articulations of African spirituality and values remains largely unexplored.

The language that is appropriated to convey experiences of faith and spirituality, including names, attributes and the language used to describe supernatural entities and deitiesmay be seen to represent the embodiment of the contemporary experiences of people’sperceptions. African literature, proverbs, songs, prayers, and appellations are not only repositories of these names and attributes but also fuller expressions of African experiences and perceptions of supersensible entities and their interactions with humans, but also important expressions of indigenous spirituality and values. Similarly, in praise genres we find what has variously been called grassroots, oral, spontaneous, or implicit theology, and represents a typeof “reflective theology” in its own right. Film, home videos and African literary works are yet other mediums in which aspects of African religious values and Christian spirituality are regularly featured.

By engaging religious studies, theology, social sciences, and the arts, this conference seeks to explore indigenous epistemologies and spiritualities through the prism of African language, literature, music, and prayer repertoires. We solicit contributions that explore, engage and analyze African literary works, music, prayers, oral histories, appellations, film, or praises in Africa and the African diaspora, in order to discern ways in which African spirituality and values are perceived and expressed by individuals and religious institutions and local communities. Contributions that raise issues of gender, ethnicity, identity, and colonialism/post-colonialism would be welcome. The conference seeks to demonstrate the importance of inter- and cross- disciplinary scholarship between the arts, humanities, and social sciences for more well- rounded, holistic engagement with African religions and spirituality.

This conference is hosted by the University of Ghana’s Department for the Study ofReligions in partnership with the Nagel Institute’s African Theological Advance Initiative, which is generously supported with funding from the Templeton Religion Trust. For further details, please see https://calvin.edu/centers-institutes/nagel-institute/projects/african-advance/

Please note: for all of the sub-themes, references to Africa or African refer equally to the African diaspora. Papers engaging issues of gender and marginalized voices are particularly welcome. Sub-themes and potential topics around which the conference is organized include but are not limited to the following:

  • African spirituality and values from African theological and/or indigenous epistemological lenses
  • African religions and spirituality as portrayed in African literature (colonial/post-colonial novels, dramas, poetry, biography/autobiography, etc.)
  • African values and spiritualities in historical context

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  • Contemporary expressions of African religions, spirituality and values in film and media
  • African indigenous agents and the promotion of African values and spirituality within

    African Christian mission history

  • Oral expressions of African religions, spirituality, and values (prayer, proverbs, parables,

    storytelling, idioms, etc.)

  • African spirituality and values expressed within African music (gospel music; reggae;

    worship music; popular cultural music etc.)

  • African spirituality, gender and sexuality explored within language, literature and worship

    contexts

    ***Abstracts/Panel proposals: Each prospective presenter should submit an abstract of not more than 250 words by email to nagel.legon.conference@gmail.com by January 31st, 2019.Abstracts must be prepared as Microsoft Word documents and should include the presenter’sname, title of paper, institutional affiliation, and contact information (mailing address, phone number, and email address). Panel proposals should be sent as one document with an overall abstract, and should also include the abstract and personal information for each panel member/presenter. Participants will be notified about the status of their proposals by February 20th, 2019.

    ***Conference Registration and Rates: (including selected refreshments, lunches, and the conference banquet)

    Early Bird Rates (March 1st30th):

    • Participants from the Global North: $100USD
    • Participants from the Global South: $80
    • Students/unwaged: $50USD

      Late Registration Rate (April 1stMay 10th):

    • Participants from the Global North: $150USD
    • Participants from the Global South: $110USD
    • Students/unwaged: $50USD

      Accommodations: bookings will be available at African Studies Yiri Lodge (Legon Campus):

    • Single room @$70USD
    • Standard Room $50$80USD
    • Deluxe room @ $100USD
    • Suite @ $120USD

      Participants may also choose to make their own bookings at the nearby Erata hotel. Prices are subject to change; we will post the most up-to-date figures as they are available:

  • Single Room @$100USD
  • Double Room @$120USD

    **Delegates should be aware that traffic within the city to/from the University can be very heavy and time-consuming; therefore we encourage you to stay on campus!

    Additional Extras:

    We are planning excursions before/after the conference to Cape Coast and Elmina Castles, as well as within Accra. We are also in discussions with the hosts of “Panafest 2019” to see howour participants might join in some of their events. Panafest is an event dedicated to African dance, music, and other performing arts to be held in Cape Coast, 25th July to 2nd August. Further details and costs for these extras will be posted as they become available.

Call for Papers: Mission Amid Global Crises

By driJanuary 14th, 2019in Call for Papers
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Today perhaps more than ever before, global missionaries encounter numerous forms of crises andhuman suffering in the normal course of their work. Whether it’s poverty in Africa, a Tsunami insoutheast Asia, human trafficking in India, or refugees in Europe and America, the likelihood that missionary efforts will intersect with some form of global crisis appears to be on the rise. What does this mean for mission theology and practice in the 21st century? How will these events shape the future of the church engaged in the Missio Dei? These issues raise important missiological questions for the church, including:

  • How do these realities impact the ongoing debate between holistic missions advocates and those who emphasize proclamation?
  • What are the implications for indigeneity when it comes to responding to global crises? How can disaster relief efforts build on the knowledge and cultural insight of local churches and local believers? How can local believers be an integral part of disaster response?
  • What contextual theologies are coming from the global south that inform modern mission praxis as it relates to human suffering?
  • What do global crises mean for North American and European churches, especially in light of materialism and individualism that often characterize Western churches?
  • How do global crises and resulting needs affect fundraising strategies?
  • How do missionaries and organizations engage in responsible evangelism in the midst of crises?
  • How does the concept of Missio Dei relate to responding to human need?
  • What are churches among the poor doing to respond to crises in their own communities?
  • How do global crises especially affect women and children? How can the church on mission serve the needs of women and children in crises?

    Papers are solicited that address these and other related topics from missiological, theological, historical, sociological, and/or regional perspectives.

    To propose a paper, send a topic title and 200-300 word abstract to marcus.dean@houghton.edu yourregional EMS vice president. Paper proposals submitted by January 23, 2019, will receive priority consideration for acceptance. Accepted papers should be 4500-7000 words in length and use Chicago Turabian author-date citation format. Selected papers presented at the regional meetings will be invited to be presented at the annual EMS meeting in Dallas, September 13-15, 2019, leading to the possibility of being published as a chapter in the EMS Annual Compendium for 2020.

    2019 EMS conference chairs:

    Kirsten Priest (kersten.priest@indwes.edu)
    Michelle Raven (Michelle.Raven@ciu.edu)
    Jerry M. Ireland (irelandj@evangel.edu)

Remembering Lamin Sanneh

By driJanuary 10th, 2019in Africa, People, World Christianity

Professor Lamin Sanneh, a dear friend and member of the original DACB Advisory Council passed away suddenly on January 6, 2019. Professor Sanneh’s involvement with the DACB began in August 1995, when the DACB was little more than an idea. Since that time, his interest in the enterprise remained constant. His association with the project in its early days lent it the academic credibility essential to its success. He will be sorely missed. We will be publishing his obituary and a full tribute in the near future.

–Jonathan Bonk

Both Jonathan Bonk and Dana Robert spoke about the loss of Lamin Sanneh in Christianity Today. In addition, Dana Robert spoke to the Washington Times as it created an obituary for Professor Sanneh.

Call for Papers: Religion, Race, and Africa

By driDecember 13th, 2018in Call for Papers
The Transatlantic Roundtable on Religion and Race (TRRR) invites presentation proposals for its 2019 conference, which will convene at Hekima Institute of Peace Studies and International Relations (HIPSIR), Hekima University College in Nairobi, Kenya, July 1-5. 

This conference takes place against the backdrop of an era of increased political authoritarianism and a noticeable rise in racial and religious intolerance across the world. In Africa the issues of migration, review of conflict intervention mechanisms and an ideological shift on the war on terrorism have raised questions on US strategy in Africa. There has also been a noticeable increase in recent years of suspicions toward known and settled facts and of an economic and cultural nationalism that is fuelling conflicts across the World.

This time of global uncertainty requires a bold and progressive agenda, that also recognizes assets and cultures of cooperation to challenge the existing order. We seek papers that will address these issues with urgency, clarity and an understanding of what is at stake and what can be imagined.

Themes to be addressed include:

  • Political and Religious Authoritarianism: Past, Present and Future
  • Deconstructing Conflict, Violence and Sovereignty in Africa and Across the Diaspora
  • Assets, Cooperatives and the Culture of Cooperation
  • Patriarchy, Sexism and the Role of Culture in Africa and the Diaspora
  • Faith-based Responses to the Immigration Crisis
  • New Formations of African Identity on the Continent and Across the Diaspora
  • Old Media New Media, Social Media and the Production of Knowledge-based Development
  • Religion, Race and Morality in the Age of New Social Movements

We invite analysis of these and other tensions at the intersections of religion, race, class, gender and nationality, especially bearing upon faith sector positioning and responses within Africa and diasporic contexts. Contemporary and historical analysis of these contexts are welcome. Best practices presentations and scholarly papers should be outlined in an abstract of 250 words or fewer and emailed by January 30th, 2019 to Dr. William Ackah  (w.ackah@bbk.ac.uk) and Dr. R. Drew Smith (rsmith@pts.edu).