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Transformed by Hope

Transformed by Hope 2008
 

During a time when the United States is choosing its future leader and all in the Americas share concerns about immigration, economic disparity, globalization and the state of our environment, Catholic Theological Union (CTU) and DePaul University in Chicago invite you to participate in "Transformed by Hope: Building a Catholic Social Theology for the Americas."

This conference, which marks the fortieth anniversary of the 1968 historic meeting of the Latin American Bishops’ Conference (CELAM) in Medellín, Colombia, will bring the strength of Catholic social teaching to bear on the urgent concerns of our day. The goal is to project a vision of Christian hope and solidarity for the Church of the Americas.

Purpose

“Transformed by Hope” 

Building a Catholic Social Theology for the Americas

September 6, 2008 marks the fortieth anniversary of the conclusion of the historic encounter in Medellín, Colombia in which the Latin American Bishops’ Conference (CELAM) announced:
We must sharpen the awareness of having to be in solidarity with the poor, a mandate that follows from charity. This solidarity entails making their problems and struggles our own and knowing how to speak for them. Practically speaking, this means focusing on the denunciation of injustice and oppression, on the Christian struggle against an intolerable situation that the poor person must often endure, on a readiness for dialogue with the groups responsible for this situation in order to make them understand their obligations (XIV.10).
These insights were the foundation for call at the 1979 CELAM meeting in Puebla for “a preferential option for the poor.” At Medellín the Church began with new vitality to address the spiritual and material needs of the poor. The meeting in 1968 also confirmed the decision of numerous religious communities in Europe and North America to rededicate their apostolate to the Latin American Church, a process that had already begun in the late 1940s under Pope Pius XII.

When Pope Benedict XVI traveled to Aparecida, Brazil in May of 2007 for the beginning of the Fifth General Conference of CELAM, he underscored the continuity of this gathering with the four that preceded it: Rio de Janeiro (1955), Medellín (1968), Puebla (1979), and Santo Domingo (1992). But Pope Benedict also acknowledged the newness of the situation to be analyzed at Aparecida and cited in that context the phenomenon of globalization as a potentially unifying but also risk-filled network of relationships extending over the whole planet.

The other changes that have taken place since 1968 include developments within the Latin American theology of liberation that Medellín helped to create as well as critical responses to certain currents of a theology of liberation from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and elsewhere. There is also a new awareness today of the tremendous impact of the globalization of markets on the daily life of the human family. Globalization presents both new opportunities and challenges, but the call of the Gospel to address the plight of the poor remains as urgent as it was in 1968. Moreover, in his post-synodal apostolic exhortation Ecclesia in America Pope John Paul II affirmed that the borders of the Church on the American hemisphere are not national borders. He recalled he clear message of the Gospel to seek a social solidarity rooted in the Trinitarian communion. He enjoined Catholics on this hemisphere to build up ecclesial bonds—relationships of love and mutual support—between the members of the Church in North and South America. Many dioceses have heard this call—including the Archdiocese of Chicago—and have responded by establishing transcontinental ties between parishes and dioceses.

On this fortieth anniversary, Catholic Theological Union and DePaul University are sponsoring a conference on the theological and social transformation that began with the CELAM meeting in Medellín. It is fitting that these two institutions create a partnership for this purpose. CTU is the largest Roman Catholic graduate school of theology in the United States and has a long-standing commitment to preparing priests, religious, and laity to serve the global Church. DePaul is the largest Catholic University in the United States and was founded to promote the Vincentian apostolate of service to the poor. The conference will contribute to a renewed social theology for the Americas, a renewal that will draw upon the wellsprings of Catholic tradition, faith, and practice with an equal focus on the pastoral mission of the Church.​     

​​Schedule

October 29-31, 2008

Opening Plenary Session: Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Forty Years after Medellín: Ecclesial Solidarity Across Borders
Francis Cardinal George, O.M.I. of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
Archbishop James Weisgerber of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops/La Conférence des Évêques Catholiques du Canada
Reverend Sidney Fones, Secretary General Adjunct of el Consejo Episcopal Latinoamericano

Second Plenary Session: Thursday, October 30, 2008
Medellín, Aparecida, and the Future
Gustavo Gutiérrez, O.P.

Third Plenary Session: Thursday, October 30, 2008
Catholic Social Theology: Perspectives Across the Americas
Kenneth Himes, O.F.M., Boston College
Laura Vargas Valcárcel, CEAS (Comisión Episcopal de Acción Social): Peruvian Bishops’ Social Action Commission
With a response by Peter Casarella, DePaul University

Closing Enlace Session: Friday, October 31, 2008
Theological Voices from a Globalized Hemisphere
John Allen, National Catholic Reporter
Maria Clara Lucchetti Bingemer, Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro
Bryan Massingale, Marquette University
Carmen Nanko-Fernández, Catholic Theological Union 


Session Descriptions

Oct. 30 Session Descriptions

Contemporary Liberation Theologies 
This session will address how themes of liberation and commitments to the preferential option for the poor have been critiqued, embraced and developed in other contexts on the American hemisphere and around the globe. 

LaReine-Marie Mosely, S.N.D., Loyola University, Chicago, IL
“Global Theologies of Liberation: Catholic Womanist Perspectives”

Gemma Cruz, DePaul University, Chicago, IL
“The Struggle Against ‘Ruptures’: Liberation Theology in the 21st Century”


Bible and the Grassroots: Empowering Women 
The Biblical message of liberation has become an important source for the integral development of women in Church and society, and this session will explore the connections between Biblical theology and the empowerment of women across the Americas.

Barbara Reid, O.P., Catholic Theological Union, Chicago, IL
Maricarmen Bracamontes, OSB, Centro de Desarrollo Integral de la Mujer, Mexico
Joint Presentation: “Women and the Bible: Relationships that Transform Death- dealing Situations into Life-giving Encounters”


Globalization and Economic Justice 
The globalization of markets and of social capital confronts us on a daily basis. This session will consider how the question of economic globalization needs to be addressed as an integral part of a social theology of the Americas.

Robert Schreiter, C.P.P.S., Catholic Theological Union, Chicago, IL
“Economic Justice in the Face of Globalization: North American Perspectives”
 
Miguel Pickard, CIEPAC, Chiapas, Mexico
"Resistance and Alternatives to Corporativism: the Search for Economic Justice in Mesoamerica"


Religion, Politics and Social Transformation
The relationship between religion and society differs considerably between different countries in the Americas. Two noted experts on Catholic social teaching reflect upon the distinct challenges faced by those advocating social change on the American hemisphere.

Paulo Fernando Carneiro de Andrade, Pontificia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
“The Political Participation of Christians: A Brazilian Liberation Theology Perspective”

Patrick McCormick, Gonzaga University, Spokane, WA
“Prophet or Hostage?  The Religious Voice in American Politics”


Theology of the Global Church after Medellín 
In the forty years that have passed since the meeting in Medellín, the Catholic Church has experienced tremendous growth in the global South. This session will focus on the theology of the Church that came out of Medellín and a Latin American theology of liberation as well as the question of how the global Church interacts today with powerful forces of economic globalization.

Michael Budde, DePaul University, Chicago, IL
“After 40 Years: Solidarity, Communion, Globalization”
 
James Nickoloff, College of the Holy Cross, Worcester, MA
"Medellín and the Holiness of the Church" 


Migration and Immigration: A Glocal Matter 
Patterns of migration and immigration on the American hemisphere cannot be separated from global migration. This session will shed light on how the global and the local come into play in the lives of migrants and in the life of the Church. 

Michel Andraos, Catholic Theological Union, Chicago, IL 
“Immigration and Identity in a Global World and Church”

Milagros Peña, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
"A Question of Justice-Responding to a Call: Catholic Sisters in Latin@ (Im)migrant Communities"

Oct. 31 Session Descriptions

Biblical Foundations of Liberation 
Many of the claims of Catholic social teaching and liberation theologies rest on the prophetic summons to act justly. This session will explore the biblical roots of social liberation and offer a constructive critique of some ways in which the Bible has been invoked. 

Jean-Pierre Ruiz, St. John’s University, New York, NY 
"The Bible and Liberation: Between the Preferential Option for the Poor and the Hermeneutical Privilege of the Poor"

Mary Ann Beavis, St. Thomas More, University of Saskatchewan, Canada
“Two-Thirds World Women of the Bible”


Pope Benedict XVI and Liberation Theology 
As Cardinal Ratzinger the current pontiff became well known for opposing certain currents of liberationist thought; however, his papal encyclicals and his intervention at Aparecida address social themes in ways quite compatible with the main currents of Medellín and other CELAM documents. Two prominent theologians reflect upon this development. 

Daniel Finn, St. John’s University, Collegeville, MN 
“Benedict XVI on Liberation Theology: The Meaning of Liberation and the Character of Theology”

Roberto Goizueta, Boston College, Boston, MA
"Liberation Theology from the Instructions to Aparecida"


Spirituality and Liberation in History and Theology 
The cry for liberation in the Gospel has taken many different forms throughout the centuries. This session will consider the historical development and spiritual dimensions of the themes of pronouncing good news to the poor and fostering peace and social reconciliation. 

Gilberto Cavazos-González, O.F.M., Catholic Theological Union, Chicago, IL 
“The Seven Pillars of Liberation Spirituality”

Karen Scott, DePaul University, Chicago, IL
"Themes in Medieval Spirituality: Poverty, Struggle, and Hope"



Caribbean Diasporas 
The question of race comes into play in a unique way in the Caribbean and among members of the Caribbean diaspora on the American hemisphere. In this session two prominent scholars of Caribbean Catholicism will speak to this issue.

Gerald Boodoo, Duquesne University, Pittsburgh, PA 
“The Caribbean: Diaspora or Plurality by Fiat? Perspectives on Caribbean Reality”

Michelle Gonzalez Maldonado, University of Miami, Miami, FL 
“Afro-Catholicism in the Americas”



Liberating Creation: Justice and Environmental Theologies
The message of liberation embraces the stewardship of creation and the protection of the environment. This session will examine how environmental justice has become a new paradigm for theologies of liberation.

Carolina Pardo Jaramillo, O.S.F., Universidad San Alfonso, Bogotá, Colombia 
“Destruction of Creation, Re-Creation from Destruction: Minorities in Resistance, A Colombian Reflection”

Dawn Nothwehr, O.S.F., Catholic Theological Union, Chicago, IL 
“Born of the Poor: Franciscan Theology of the Environment and the Journey from Medellín to Aparecida”


Interculturality and Popular Catholicism 
The dialogue of cultures is an urgent theme in the Catholic Church and world. This session will examine the different ways in which theologians have reflected upon the challenge of developing an intercultural theology with attention to insights from the study of popular Catholicism. 

José DeMesa, De La Salle University, Manila, Philippines 
“Feeling as Solidarity in Filipino Popular Catholicism”

Orlando Espín, University of San Diego, CA
"Popular Catholicism: An Intercultural Dialogical Model?"

Conference Speakers

Transformed by Hope Speakers

Peter Casarella (Conference Co-Chair)
DePaul University
Professor, Program in Catholic Studies
Director, Center for World Catholicism and Intercultural Theology

Plenary
Catholic Social Theology: Perspectives Across the Americas

Carmen Nanko-Fernández (Conference Co-Chair)
Catholic Theological Union
Assistant Professor of Pastoral Ministry
Director, Certificate Program in Pastoral Studies

Enlace: Theological Voices from a Globalized American Hemisphere

John Allen
Senior Correspondent
National Catholic Reporter

Enlace: Theological Voices from a Globalized American Hemisphere

Michel Andraos
Catholic Theological Union
Associate Professor of Cross-Cultural Ministry

Migration and Immigration: A Glocal Matter

Mary Ann Beavis
St. Thomas More, University of Saskatchewan, Canada 
Professor and Head, Department of Religious Studies & Anthropology

Biblical Foundations of Liberation

Maria Clara Lucchetti Bingemer
Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Dean, Center of Theology and Human Sciences
Associate Professor of Theology

Enlace: Theological Voices from a Globalized American Hemisphere

Gerald Boodoo
Duquesne University
Associate Professor of Systematic Theology

Caribbean Diasporas

Maricarmen Bracamontes
Founding member and teacher at CEDIMSE, S.C. (Centro de Desarrollo Integral de las Mujeres, Santa Escolástica)

Bible and the Grassroots: Empowering Women

Michael Budde
DePaul University
Professor of Political Science

Theology of the Global Church after Medellín

Paulo Fernando Carneiro de Andrade
Pontificia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro
Vice-Dean

Religion, Politics and Social Transformation

Gilberto Cavazos-González
Catholic Theological Union
Associate Professor of Spirituality
Director, Hispanic Ministry Program

Spirituality and Liberation in History and Theology

Gemma Cruz
DePaul University
Visiting Assistant Professor of Catholic Studies

Contemporary Liberation Theologies

José deMesa
Inter-Congregational Theological Center
University Fellow and Professor of Systematic Theology

Interculturality and Popular Catholicism

Orlando Espín
University of San Diego
Professor of Systematic Theology

Interculturality and Popular Catholicism

Daniel Finn
St. John’s University
Professor of Theology and Clemens Professor of Economics

Pope Benedict XVI and Liberation Theology

Francis Cardinal George, O.M.I.
Archbishop of Chicago

Plenary
Forty Years after Medellín:Ecclesial Solidarity Across Borders

Robert S. Goizueta 
Boston College 
Margaret O'Brien Flatley Professor of Catholic Theology

Pope Benedict XVI and Liberation Theology

Michelle Gonzalez Maldonado
University of Miami
Assistant Professor of Religious Studies

Caribbean Diasporas

Gustavo Gutierrez, O.P.
University of Notre Dame
John Cardinal O'Hara Professor of Theology

Plenary 
Medellín, Aparecida, and the Future

Kenneth Himes
Boston College
Chair, Department of Theology 

Plenary
Catholic Social Theology: Perspectives Across the Americas

Bryan Massingale
Marquette University
Associate Professor of Theology

Enlace: Theological Voices from a Globalized American Hemisphere

Patrick McCormick
Gonzaga University
Professor of Christian Ethics 

Religion, Politics and Social Transformation

LaReine-Marie Mosely
Loyola University 
Assistant Professor of Theology

Contemporary Liberation Theologies

James Nickoloff
College of the Holy Cross
Associate Professor of Religious Studies 

Theology of the Global Church after Medellín

Dawn Nothwehr
Catholic Theological Union
Associate Professor of Ethics
Chair, Historical and Doctrinal Studies Department

Liberating Creation: Justice and Environmental Theologies

Carolina Pardo Jaramillo
Fundación Universitaria San Alfonso Bogotá- Colombia
Faculty and Psychologist

Liberating Creation: Justice and Environmental Theologies

Milagros Peña 
University of Florida-Gainesville
Professor of Sociology and Women’s Studies
Ddirector, Center for Women's Studies

Migration and Immigration: A Glocal Matter

Miguel Pickard
Center for Economic and Political Investigations for Community Action
Founding Member

Globalization and Economic Justice

Barbara Reid
Catholic Theological Union
Professor of New Testament Studies

Bible and the Grassroots: Empowering Women

Jean-Pierre Ruiz
St. John's University 
Associate Professor of Biblical Studies
Director, Master of Arts in Liberal Studies
Senior Research Fellow, Vincentian Center for Church and Society

Biblical Foundations of Liberation

Robert Schreiter
Catholic Theological Union 
Vatican Council II Professor of Theology

Globalization and Economic Justice

Karen Scott
DePaul University
Associate Professor of History
Director, Program in Catholic Studies 

Spirituality and Liberation in History and Theology

Laura Vargas Valcárcel
CEAS (Comisión Episcopal de Acción Social): Peruvian Bishops’ Social Action Commission
Adjunct Executive Secretary

Plenary
Catholic Social Theology: Perspectives Across the Americas

Archbishop James Weisgerber
Archbishop, Archdiocese of Winnipeg 
Vice-President of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB)

Plenary 
Forty Years after Medellín:Ecclesial Solidarity Across Borders