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‘Ecumenism’ and ‘independency’ suggest two distinct impulses in the history of Christianity: the desire for unity, co-operation, connectivity, and shared belief and practice, and the impulse for distinction, plurality, and contextual translation. Yet ecumenism and independency are better understood as existing in critical tension with one another. They provide a way of examining changes in World Christianity. Taking their lead from the internationally acclaimed research of Brian Stanley, in whose honour this book is published, contributors examine the entangled nature of ecumenism and independency in the modern global history of Christianity. They show how the scrutiny afforded by the attention to local, contextual approaches to Christianity outside the western world, may inform and enrich the attention to transnational connectivity.
Exploration, trade and conquest expanded and upset traditional worldviews of early modern Europeans. Christians saw themselves confronted with a largely heathen world. In the wake of Iberian colonization, Jesuits successfully christianized heathen populations overseas. In his De conversione Indorum et gentilium, Johannes Hoornbeeck presents a systematic overview of every aspect of the missionary imperative from a Reformed Protestant perspective. The most attractive part of his book may be the global survey it offers of the various types of heathens, an early example of comparative religion. Of equal interest, however, is his critical approach to mission. Hoornbeeck rejects ecclesiastical hierarchy and top-down imposition of Christianity. In this he is perfectly orthodox, and at the same time startlingly original and a harbinger of modern missions. His practical recommendations offer a flexible framework for missionaries, to fit a wide variety of circumstances.
Author: Xiaoli Yang
In A Dialogue between Haizi’s Poetry and the Gospel of Luke Xiaoli Yang offers a conversation between the Chinese soul-searching found in Haizi’s (1964–1989) poetry and the gospel of Jesus Christ through Luke’s testimony. It creates a unique contextual poetic lens that appreciates a generation of the Chinese homecoming journey through Haizi’s poetry, and explores its relationship with Jesus Christ. As the dialogical journey, it names four stages of homecoming—roots, vision, journey and arrival. By taking an interdisciplinary approach—literary study, inter-cultural dialogue and comparative theology, Xiaoli Yang convincingly demonstrates that the common language between the poet Haizi and the Lukan Jesus provides a crucial and rich source of data for an ongoing table conversation between culture and faith.
Author: Naomi Thurston
Studying Christianity in China introduces an emerging academic trend in contemporary Chinese scholarship. Through qualitative interviews with leading experts in Chinese Christian studies, Naomi Thurston has investigated the ongoing conversation between China and Christianity. Since the 1980s, this conversation has given rise to an interdisciplinary academic field that is quickly gaining traction as a cutting-edge, cross-cultural discourse. The Chinese intellectuals driving this field are encountered as unique transmitters of cultural knowledge: they are cultural mediators working in a range of humanities and social science disciplines who are not only re-interpreting Western theology, but are also lending a new voice to Chinese expressions of the Christian faith. As such, they are at the forefront of a novel force in World Christianity.
A survey of the latest scholarship on Catholic missions between the 16th and 18th centuries, this collection of fourteen essays by historians from eight countries offers not only a global view of the organization, finances, personnel, and history of Catholic missions to the Americas, Africa, and Asia, but also the complex political, cultural, and religious contexts of the missionary fields.
The conquests and colonization of the Americas presented a different stage for the drama of evangelization in contrast to that of Africa and Asia: the inhospitable landscape of Africa, the implacable Islamic societies of the Ottoman, Safavid, and Mughal empires, and the self-assured regimes of Ming-Qing China, Nguyen dynasty Vietnam, and Tokugawa Japan.

Contributors are Tara Alberts, Mark Z. Christensen, Dominique Deslandres, R. Po-chia Hsia, Aliocha Maldavsky, Anne McGinness, Christoph Nebgen, Adina Ruiu, Alan Strathern, M. Antoni J. Üçerler, Fred Vermote, Guillermo Wilde, Christian Windler, and Ines Zupanov.
Interdisciplinary Studies in Universal and Local Expressions of the Christian Faith 
Existing scholarship on World Christianities tends to privilege the local and the regional. In addition to offering an explanation for this tendency, the editors and contributors of this volume also offer a new perspective. An Introduction, Afterword and case-studies argue for the importance of transregional connections in the study of Christianity worldwide. Returning to an older post-war conception of ‘World Christianity’ as an international, ecumenical fellowship, the present volume aims to highlight the universalist, globalising aspirations of many Christians worldwide. While we do not neglect the importance of the local, our aim is to give due weight to the significant transregional networks and exchanges that have constituted Christian communities, both historically and in the present day.

Contributors are: J. Kwabena Asamoah-Gyadu, Naures Atto, Joel Cabrita, Pedro Feitoza, David C. Kirkpatrick, Chandra Mallampalli, David Maxwell, Dorottya Nagy, Peter C. Phan, Andrew Preston, Joel Robbins, Chloe Starr, Charlotte Walker-Said, Emma Wild-Wood.

The Social Lives and Networks of Minnan Protestants, 1840s-1920s
Author: Chris White
In Sacred Webs, historian Chris White demonstrates how Chinese Protestants in Minnan, or the southern half of Fujian Province, fractured social ties and constructed and utilized new networks through churches, which served as nodes linking individuals into larger Protestant communities. Through analyzing missionary archives, local church reports, and available Chinese records, Sacred Webs depicts Christianity as a Chinese religion and Minnan Protestants as laying claim to both a Christian faith and a Chinese cultural heritage.
The Border Services of the Church of Christ in China and Chinese Church-State Relations, 1920s to 1950s
Author: Diana Junio
In Patriotic Cooperation, Diana Junio offers an account of a cooperative venture between the Nationalist government and the Church of Christ in China, known as the Border Service Department, that carried out substantial social programs from 1939 to 1955 in China’s Southwestern border areas.

Numerous scholars have argued that Chinese state-religion relations have been characterized primarily by conflict and antagonism. By examining the history of cooperation seen in the Border Service Department case, Diana Junio contends that these relations have not always been antagonistic; on the contrary, under certain conditions the state and the church could achieve a mutually beneficial goal through successful cooperation, with a strong degree of sincerity on both sides.
In A Reformed Voice in the Ecumemenical Discussion Martien E. Brinkman offers a critical account of the main international ecumenical developments of the last three decades. He delivers a sketch of the Reformed contribution to the ecumenical dialogues dealing with issues like contextuality, state-church relations, the ethical implications of baptism, the church as sacrament of the kingdom and apostolic tradition.

He pleas for a stronger non-Western input in the ecumenical discussions and emphasizes that in many contexts (Indonesia, India, China) the interreligious dialogue has become part of the inner-Christian dialogue. This study can be considered as a constructive contribution to the development of a hermeneutics of tradition and puts itself the critical question what is lost and found in translation.
The Christian Doctrine of Justification Contextualized to New Confucianism
Author: Arne Redse
Chinese contexts as influenced by the religious moral philosophy of New Confucianism are characterized by the idea of becoming a sage through self-cultivation. For Christian theology – with its emphasis on God’s grace rather than on self-cultivation – Confucian teaching in this matter may appear as a problem.

Chinese Christian theology may ask: How can the Christian doctrine of justification by grace alone be contextualized in Chinese contexts which are characterized by the contradicting idea of self-cultivation? Another question may be equally interesting for Christian theology in all contexts: Which insights can be attained from an attempt at contextualizing the Christian doctrine of justification to contexts influenced by New Confucianism?

In this book professor Arne Redse contributes to answering these questions.
A Collection of Essays by Liu Xiaofeng
Author: Liu Xiaofeng
Editor: Leopold Leeb
Since his controversial Delivering and Dallying (published in 1988), Liu Xiaofeng has been considered the most influential among contemporary Chinese intellectuals interested in Christianity. Now for the first time this collection of Liu's essays, translated and commented by Prof. Leopold Leeb, enables the non-Chinese reader to get a comprehensive understanding of the ideas of this inspiring and erudite scholar.
Liu Xiaofeng's Sino-Theology and the Philosophy of History, together with the other essays in this collection, provide a panoramic view of the situation of Christian studies in the Chinese context today. In his introduction, Leopold Leeb also presents several other scholars who have been of crucial importance in the dialogue between Chinese culture and Christianity in the last three decades.
Korean missionary experience. A model for the third millennium
The three methods of doing mission, namely conquista, accommodation, kenosis need to be seen not so much as historical events that took place in a particular time and space, but rather as deeply engraved mind structures and personal attitudes as we confront many of the modern time issues such as mass poverty and its relationship to the churches, interreligious and ecumenical dialogue, relationship with Islam, Catholic education in public institutions, moral and ethical problems regarding the treatment of embryos for eugenic purposes, issues concerning the end of life, social debate on alternative lifestyles and the role of women in ecclesial institutions, to mention but a few.
Zur Hermeneutik der chinesisch-christlichen Begegnung nach Wu Leichuan (1869-1944)
Author: Dr.Roman Malek
This work explores the Christian-Chinese encounter from a non-Confucian perspective, exemplified by the comparison between Jesus and the philosopher Mozi (5th c. B.C.). The investigation is based on the work Mozi yu Yesu of the Hanlin scholar and convert Wu Leichuan (1869–1944). The first part gives a biographical sketch and discusses the writings and prolegomena of the Sino-Christian hermeneutics of Wu. Part two describes the social reformer Mozi and his teachings that are interpreted by Wu in a Christian way. Part three presents the life and teachings of Jesus according to Wu as well as his attempts to establish a “Ruist” view of the Christian tradition. Part four is dedicated to the comparison between Mozi and Jesus, with special emphasis on Wu’s understanding of religion. The fifth part refers to the defectiveness of the Chinese and Christian traditions and to the necessity of a return to the “true and original Dao.”
The Making of the First Native Protestant Church
Author: David Cheung
Using mainly hitherto unstudied primary materials, this monograph studies a very significant episode in Chinese Christianity. Focusing on the origins and earliest history of Protestantism in South Fujian, this analytical-critical study investigates the evolution of the churches which pioneered in indigenisation and ecclesiastical union in China during the nineteenth century.
Some subjects studied are primitive missionary objectives and methods, the relationship between the ‘Talmage ideal’ and the Three-self concept, and the nature and dynamics of ‘native’ religious work. Extremely useful is the critical assessment of South Fujian in terms of self-propagation, self-government, self-support and organic union. The key areas suggested for future research are also quite thought-provoking. The volume is especially valuable to social and church historians, missiologists and sociologists.