International Edward Schillebeeckx Seminar
The Authority of the Church in Politics:
The Future of Political Theology
- Conference Theme
- Keynote Speakers
- Conference Program
- Further Information
- Call for Papers
The Edward Schillebeeckx Project and the Research Group Fundamental and Political Theology at KU Leuven will hold a three-day conference on The Authority of the Church in Politics: The Future of Political Theology from November 3–5, 2016. The world religions, secular governments, and international movements and ideologies all claim to exert authority in the political sphere, but how the Church itself is and can be a political body in this climate remains a topic of fierce debate. In a world that is simultaneously polarized by political crises and knitted closer together by new communications technology, what kind of authority does the Church possess and what kind of claims can it make with reference to itself and to the wider society? In order to deal with this question theologians are also asked to reevaluate the foundations, efficacy, and goals of politically oriented fundamental theology: political theology and its future as a part of the Church’s mission and discourse. These reflections on both the nature and future of political theology can contribute to Church’s self-understanding and exercise of authority in its pursuit of the eschatological promise of the Church as the Body of Christ.
This forum will explore the future of political theology and the necessity of systematic theological approaches to politics in the contemporary context in relation to both ecclesial and secular authority. It will proceed under the guiding reflection of Edward Schillebeeckx, that “theological reflection can also anticipate and pave the way for future proclamation” of the gospel in the world.
The conference will be undertaken in the spirit of Edward Schillebeeckx’s theological legacy, and with special attention to furthering the academic research on Schillebeeckx that is being performed at KU Leuven.
Kurt Appel is Professor of Fundamental Theology at the University of Vienna. Appel is the author of Zeit und Gott. Mythos und Logos der Zeit im Anschluss an Hegel und Schelling (2008). He is the head of the Institute for Fundamental Theology and the Research Platform Religion and Transformation in Contemporary European Society, and Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Interdisciplinary Journal for Religion and Transformation in Contemporary Society.
Erik Borgman is professor at the Tilburg School of Humanities at Tilburg University. He is the editor-in-chief of Tijdschrift voor Theologie, and a member of the editorial board of Concilium. He is the author of Part I of Edward Schillebeeckx's biography, Edward Schillebeeckx: A Theologian in His History.
Bradford E. Hinze is the Karl Rahner, SJ Professor of Theology at Fordham University in New York. He is currently researching the role of conflict, dissensus, and differentiated consensus in agonistic practices and theories of synodality and democracy.
Anthony J. Godzieba is Professor of Theology at Villanova University. He is editor-emeritus of Horizons: The Journal of the College Theology Society. He is the author of numerous articles and book chapters, and is an expert in theological aesthetics, theological hermeneutics, and fundamental theology.
Daniel Minch is a postdoctoral researcher at KU Leuven. His research focuses on the theology of Edward Schillebeeckx, political theology, and eschatology. He has published articles in Horizons, Louvain Studies, and Tijdschrift voor Theologie. He is the co-editor of Approaching the Threshold of Mystery: Liturgical Worlds and Theological Spaces (Friedrich Pustet, 2015).
Paul D. Murray is Professor of Systematic Theology at Durham University. His research centers on ecclesiology, political theology, and Christian ecumenism. He is the author of Reason, Truth and Theology in Pragmatist Perspective (Peeters Press, 2004).
Stephan van Erp is Professor of Fundamental Theology at KU Leuven. He is the managing editor of Tijdschrift voor Theologie, and one of the series editors of T&T Clark Studies in Edward Schillebeeckx (Bloomsbury Press). He is the author of De onvoltooide eeuw. Voorlopers van een katholieke cultuur (Valkhof Press, 2015).
Registration for the conference is now closed.
Doctoral students in the fields of theology and religious studies, philosophy, and philosophy of religion, and particularly those interested in the work of Edward Schillebeeckx, are invited to submit abstracts of no more than 250 words for consideration for this conference. Accepted papers should be 20-minutes in length, and will be followed by discussion and questions from the other students and experts present. This forum will explore the future of political theology and the necessity of systematic theological approaches to politics in the contemporary context in relation to both ecclesial and secular authority. It will proceed under the guiding reflection of Edward Schillebeeckx, that “theological reflection can also anticipate and pave the way for future proclamation” of the gospel in the world. There is the possibility that some of the papers may be published in the T&T Clark Studies in Edward Schillebeeckx series (Bloomsbury Press).
The Call for Papers is now closed. A full list of abstracts and the schedule of parallel papers will be available soon.
Papers will be accepted on the following topics:
- The relationship of the Church to the social and political responsibilities of the theologian
- The role of digital media for the reception and the imagination of Church authority
- New theological approaches in response to the socio-political crises of terrorism and migration
- The interrelation of economic and theo-political interests
- The responses and responsibilities of the theologian and the church to the ruling economic paradigm
- The theology and thought of Edward Schillebeeckx
For all other questions regarding the conference please email Dr. Daniel Minch for help.