Special Issue "Theology and Practical Life"

A special issue of Religions (ISSN 2077-1444).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2019

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Simon S.M. Kwan

Divinity School of Chung Chi College, Department of Cultural and Religious Studies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, Hong Kong
Website | E-Mail
Interests: Asia theologies; contextual theologies; Christian counseling; practical theologies

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Theology is eminently practical—this is what basically this special issue is about. Martin Luther put the idea succinctly when he said, “Divinity consists in use and practice, not in speculation and meditation. Every one that deals in speculations, either in household affairs or in temporal government, without practice, is lost and worth nothing." The great philosopher-theologian of the High Middle Ages Duns Scotus similarly emphasized that “the habit of theology is practical.” Although theology is unmistakably academic, it can no longer be done in an armchair; although practice has its technical and strategic dimension, it is inherently moral and theological. Theology-practice integration is imperative. The recent decades thus saw the inauguration of many theological organizations to go along the lines of this tradition to engage in constructing the discourse, such as the International Academy of Practical Theology, the British and Irish Association for Practical Theology, the Association of Practical Theology, International Society of Empirical Research in Theology, the Society for Practical Theology in South Africa, the Asia Academy of Practical Theology Hong Kong, etc. Today, the impact is felt in many ways throughout the entire field of theology both within and without the communities of practical theology.

For this special issue of our journal we call for papers that address theologizing as a transformational activity in different aspects of practical life. They include but are not limited to social justice, world peace, politics, economics , business, ecology, poverty, inter-religious and cross-cultural encounter, human sexuality, aesthetic appreciation, spirituality and spiritual care, health and disease, aging, disabilities, education, and the like. While we welcome different approaches to theology and practical life, priority will be given to those that show a good level of interdisciplinary engagement, and take seriously the analysis of the empirical practical reality.

May we all learn as we share our views and our experiences with each other.

Prof. Dr. Simon Shui-Man Kwan
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Religions is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charges (APCs) of 550 CHF (Swiss Francs) per published paper are partially funded by institutions through Knowledge Unlatched for a limited number of papers per year. Please contact the editorial office before submission to check whether KU waivers, or discounts are still available. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Practice
  • Practical Theology
  • Empirical Theology
  • Social Justice
  • world peace
  • theology & politics
  • theology & economics
  • theology & business
  • ecology
  • poverty
  • inter-religious and cross-cultural encounter
  • human sexuality
  • aesthetic appreciation
  • spirituality and spiritual care
  • health and disease
  • aging
  • disabilities
  • education

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Keeping It Real: Decolonizing Christian Inter-Religious Practice as an Exercise in a Practical Theology of the Cross
Religions 2019, 10(3), 203; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10030203
Received: 22 February 2019 / Revised: 11 March 2019 / Accepted: 12 March 2019 / Published: 16 March 2019
PDF Full-text (416 KB)
Abstract
“What is suffering? What is hope?” These are questions I have asked for years with classes full of students training for Christian ministry. Now, I ask these questions in classes with Buddhist, Muslim, Jewish, Christian, and ‘spiritual but not religious’ students, all in [...] Read more.
“What is suffering? What is hope?” These are questions I have asked for years with classes full of students training for Christian ministry. Now, I ask these questions in classes with Buddhist, Muslim, Jewish, Christian, and ‘spiritual but not religious’ students, all in training to be spiritual care therapists. The institution where I serve is in the process of transitioning from a mono-religious Christian theological College to a centre for multi/inter-religious education. Those of us who teach in the program are disrupted continually by pedagogical challenges that both perplex and energize us. The multi-religious classroom decolonizes spaces long dominated by Christian theological discourse. Course content yields to a fluid and open-ended, interactive process. My “mastery of the field” gives way to an ongoing practice of surrender—a kenotic self-emptying—that usually leaves me shaken in overwhelming awe or angst-ridden questioning. Through a practical theological methodology that begins with lived human experience, this paper shares an autoethnographic account of my experience as a teacher in the multi-religious classroom. It presents key dimensions of the theology of the cross as an interpretive framework and closes by examining how the theology of the cross offers a practical Christian theological reflective process to empower decolonizing pedagogy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Theology and Practical Life)
Open AccessArticle Participation as a Christian Ethic: Wojtyla’s Phenomenology of Subject-in-Community, Ubuntu, and the Trinity
Religions 2019, 10(1), 57; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10010057
Received: 22 October 2018 / Revised: 14 January 2019 / Accepted: 14 January 2019 / Published: 17 January 2019
PDF Full-text (196 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Participation is defined as being-with and acting-for others with the aim of advancing the common good. Karol Wojtyla’s philosophy of community and the Sub-Saharan ethic known as Ubuntu are used to describe a participative ethic. These philosophies approach participation in a particular way—namely, [...] Read more.
Participation is defined as being-with and acting-for others with the aim of advancing the common good. Karol Wojtyla’s philosophy of community and the Sub-Saharan ethic known as Ubuntu are used to describe a participative ethic. These philosophies approach participation in a particular way—namely, through positing both an ‘I-Thou’ and a ‘We’ dimension. Neither in Wojtyla’s philosophy, nor in Ubuntu, do we find references to Christian theology. Though it is evident that these philosophies incorporate certain moral values embraced by the Christian community, it is necessary to make the theological alignment explicit. The main aim of the essay is to do just that. It is argued that participation is rightly construed as a Trinitarian ethic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Theology and Practical Life)
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