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Gerard Mannion (Sept. 21, 2019)
It is with tremendous sadness and shock that the Executive Committee of INSeCT announces the news that Gerard Mannion, President of the International Network of Societies for Catholic Theology, passed away suddenly on Saturday, September 21, 2019.
Gerard Mannion has left his mark on a broad spectrum of theological forums. He was the Chair in Catholic Studies in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies at Georgetown University, a senior research fellow at the Berkley Center, and the founding chair of the Ecclesiological Investigations International Research Network. As a long-standing member of the Catholic Theological Society of America, he had assumed the presidency of the International Network of Societies for Catholic Theology in 2017.
He was published widely in the fields of ecclesiology, ethics, and public theology, as well as in other fields of systematic theology and philosophy. His numerous books include Pope Francis and the Future of Catholicism: Evangelii Gaudium and the Papal Agenda (2017), Where We Dwell in Common: Pathways for Dialogue in the 21st Century (ed., 2015), and The Routledge Companion to the Christian Church (2008, ed. with Lewis Mudge). He was also editor of the Bloomsbury Publishing series “Ecclesiological Investigations” and series editor, with Oxford University’s Mark Chapman, of Palgrave Macmillan’s “Pathways for Ecumenical and Interreligious Dialogue” series.
Gerard had commitments to a thoroughly accountable and above all inclusive Roman Catholic Church among the faithful; its continuing and eager ecumenical engagement outside the fold; and a readiness to think and write well as a public theologian. He was a great lover of the Church, a passionate ecumenist, and a loyal, collaborative colleague in every endeavour he undertook, which were many.
As President of INSeCT, Gerard worked with passion and commitment to develop the Network so that it could continue to respond to its vision and mission of connecting Catholic theology worldwide as it serves both the Church and the world. His intelligence, dedication, humour and leadership shall be sorely missed.
We keep Gerard, his family, colleagues and friends, in our thoughts and prayers.
Eternal rest grant to Gerard, O Lord;
and let light perpetual shine upon him.
May his soul, and the souls
of all the faithful departed,
through the mercy of God, rest in peace.
The Executive of INSeCT
Nontando Hadebe (CTSSA)
Maeve Louise Heaney (ACTA)
Gunter Prüller-Jagenteufel (ESCT)
Paulo Fernando Carneiro de Andrade (SOTER)
Following their annual meeting from 28 April to 1 May 2019, the Indian Women Theologians’ Forum (IWTF) has released the following statement:
Letter from Gerard Kelly, President of ACTA:
Proceedings of ESCT Conference 2017 in Strasbourg:
Marie-Jo Thiel, Marc Feix (éds.), Le défi de la fraternité. The Challenge of fraternity. Die Herausforderung der Geschwisterlichkeit (serious Theology East – West / Theologie Ost – West, vol. Bd. 23), LIT: Muenster et al. 2018, p. 640, 39.90 EUR, 39.90 CHF, br., ISBN 978-3-643-91018-9
Marie-Jo Thiel, president of ESCT, presenting the book to Pope Francis.
Un temps galvaudée, oubliée, la fraternité est aujourd’hui redécouverte au contact d’immenses défis éthiques comme la migration, le terrorisme, l’économie libérale, l’environnement, la médecine … Mais d’où vient-elle ? Le christianisme a joué un rôle déterminant dans sa compréhension et l’ouvrage revisite nombre d’écrits bibliques, théologiques, tout en convoquant largement les sciences humaines. La Révolution française l’a bien compris, qui a tenté de se démarquer de cet héritage religieux. Écrit à la lumière d’un colloque international (AETC), l’ouvrage comprend des textes en français, en anglais et en allemand.
Marie-Jo Thiel, professeure à l’Université de Strasbourg, directrice du CEERE (Centre européen d’éthique), présidente de l’Association européenne de théologie catholique.
Marc Feix, maître de conférences à la Faculté de théologie catholique de l’Université de Strasbourg, directeur de l’ERCAL (Équipe de recherche sur le catholicisme en Alsace).
Une Église qui change. Cinq ans après l’élection du Pape François
See the content: ET Studies 9 (2018) 1
Theological and Ethical Confab on Socio-Political Questions Held in Manila, Philippines
Three hundred people who are engaged in current socio-political issues in the Philippines participated in a two-day confab last April 19 and 20, 2018, held at the CICM Maryhill School of Theology in Quezon City. With the theme “The Prophetic Mission of the Church in Present-day Philippines,” sixteen presentations and discussions dealt with various theological and ethical questions vis-à-vis the populist authoritarian regime of President Rodrigo Duterte. One of the major highlights of the gathering, and which the participants shared as a Christian imperative with a sense of urgency, is to challenge the culture of silence, deceit, intimidation, violence, and the weaponization of the laws and the social media through which the present political administration has been forcibly imposing its will upon the people. This prophetic work implies converting from within the structures and practices of the churches by moving out of its “self-referential” praxis and to become a “church of the periphery” (inspired by Pope Francis) that serves and find solace in the pains and hopes of the most vulnerable people in society. The participants are unanimous that solidarity with the poor, weak, victims, and forsaken is what is called for in order to advance the common good and to reassert engaged democratic citizenship in the country today. The Confab was spearheaded by Laiki Agora – Philippines, an association of lay theologians that creates spaces of dialogue, discernment, and action on socio-political questions.
Emmanuel Serafica de Guzman
The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference has decided to celebrate a Plenary Council for the Church in Australia in 2020. In announcing the Council the bishops said:
“At the conclusion of the Jubilee Year 2000, Pope Saint John Paul II encouraged the Church in his Apostolic Letter ‘Novo Millennio Ineunte’ (2001) to discern what the Spirit has been saying to the Church and to put into practice resolutions and guidelines for action that fit the context and culture of each place (§3). Reflecting on what the Spirit has been saying to the People of God, he exhorted “the Pastors of the particular Churches, with the help of all sectors of God’s People”, to plan for the future in a collegial way that harmonises among the dioceses the work of pastoral revitalisation (§29).
Pope Francis has encouraged and fostered the same collegiality among bishops and synodality throughout the whole Church. In his address last October commemorating the fiftieth anniversary of the institution of the Synod of Bishops, he stated: “A synodal Church is a Church which listens, which realises that listening ‘is more than simply hearing’. It is a mutual listening in which everyone has something to learn. The faithful people, the college of bishops, the Bishop of Rome: all listening to each other, and all listening to the Holy Spirit, the ‘Spirit of truth’ (Jn 14:17), in order to know what he ‘says to the Churches’ (Rev 2:7).” Speaking of Ecclesiastical Provinces and Regions, Particular Councils and Conferences of Bishops, the Holy Father went on to observe that, “We need to reflect on how better to bring about, through these bodies, intermediary instances of collegiality, perhaps by integrating and updating certain aspects of the ancient ecclesiastical organisation. The hope expressed by the [Second Vatican] Council that such bodies would help increase the spirit of episcopal collegiality has not yet been fully realised. We are still on the way, part-way there.”
The circumstances of the Church in Australia in our time, including the patterns of change that are evident within the community of the Church, the issues confronting the Church in modern multicultural and secular Australia, the increase in entrusting responsibility for and leadership of the Church’s mission to laity, and even the changing face of the Episcopate, prompt the Church to review, analyse, and discern the signs of the times, to listen anew to the Spirit, and to chart its course into the future.”
The Australian Catholic Theological Association put the Plenary Council on the agenda of its 2017 conference and will follow up at the 2018 conference. Members of the association – the theologians of Australia – will have an important contributing role in providing theological reflection on matters pertinent to the Council.