Interpreting Contemporary Christianity

SMT3653HS  L0101
Offered in Winter 2010  ·  Previously offered in Summer 2009 · Toronto (St. George Campus) Site

This course introduces students into a creative dialogue between African and Western Christianity. We shall concentrate on Christianity in sub-Saharan Africa (East, West, and Southern Africa), and Christianity in Quebec, the rest of Canada, United States, and Ireland. Topics to be covered include: the Western missionary factor in African Christianity, trends in African Christianity, emerging African theologies, the social context of faith in Africa, and the contribution of African Christianity to the nature and shape of contemporary Christianity. The course will also engage the reality of a post-Western Christianity and post-Christian Western societies for the practice of the faith and theologies in Canada, the US and Ireland. In addition, the course will examine the dynamics of Christianity in Canada, USA, and Ireland as representative countries in Western Christianity, and the possibility of a mutual dialogue and penetration between African and Western Christianity. The course will answer the following questions: What has African Christianity gained from Western Christianity? What is the present state of the Christian faith in sub-Saharan Africa? What are the problems and challenges facing African Christianity and what tools can be developed from mission studies to meet them? What can African Christianity teach Western Christianity? What can Western Christianity teach African Christianity? What are the dynamics of Christian contraction in Canada, the USA and Ireland as representatives of a post-Christian West, and a post-Western Christianity?

The course has a missional and ecumenical orientation, and will adopt a hermeneutical and practical methodology as well as quantitative and qualitative pedagogical approaches. The course is interdisciplinary and could be listed in the theological department and will be cross-listed to historical and pastoral departments.

Each student will be required to write an analysis of an article or book from the course bibliography (25%), a position paper for a seminar presentation (25%), and a major research paper (50%). The seminar presentation will be based on a practical pastoral challenge or problematic which the student brings up from the course material or his or her Christian tradition.

Schedule: Thursday, 14:00 to 16:00
Teaching Methods: Lectures, Seminars
Other Information: Second Semester · One Credit · Min: 8

47 Queen's Park Crescent East · Toronto, Ontario · M5S 2C3 · Canada · Tel: 416-978-4039 · Fax: 416-978-7821 · E-mail: inquiries @
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