College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences > Academics > Catholic Studies > Faculty > Stan Chu Ilo

Stan Chu Ilo

  • Associate Professor
  • ​​​​​PhD, University of St Michael’s College in the University of Toronto​​​
    PhD, University of South Africa 
  • Catholic Studies
  • Faculty
  • ​​​​​African Christianity, cross-cultural studies, African intellectual and political history, African Catholicism and the World Church, equity and diversity in faith-based education and ministry, Religion and Social Transformation, Religion and Violence​
  • 773-325-4157
  • ​​​SAC 58​​8

Studying in Africa, North America, and Europe has given me a deep appreciation of the intercultural dimensions of learning in a changing world and a grateful respect for the beauty and differences in cultures and religious traditions. I was ordained a Catholic priest in my home country of Nigeria, and in addition to my native language, Igbo, I speak French, English, and Italian. My educational background includes an MA in theology; an MA in educational leadership; an ecclesiastical licentiate in sacred theology (with a concentration in the Christological images in Luke-Acts and African theologies); and a PhD in theology from the University of St Michael’s College at the University of Toronto (with a concentration in African Christian history’s cross-cultural currents); and a second PhD from the University of South Africa in the sociology of education, specializing in equity and multicultural education in faith-based schooling. 

In addition to teaching at DePaul, I am also a visiting professor at Tangaza University College’s Institute of Social Ministry and Mission in Nairobi, and the founder of the Canadian Samaritans for Africa, a nonprofit that works directly with African women to help them alleviate poverty. I also am the editor of the African Christian Studies Series for Pickwick Publications, Wipf and Stock Publishers; a commentator on Africa, religion, and politics for Canada Television (CTV) and Al-Jazeera; a columnist for CNN African Voices, Catholic Register and Premium Times; and a blogger for Huffington Post’s World Affairs, Religion, and Black Voices sections.

My areas of interest are cross-cultural studies, African intellectual and political history, African Christianity and the world Church, equity and diversity in faith-based education and ministry, religion and social transformation, and religion and violence. I coordinate CWCIT’s new African Catholicism Project,  a network of established and emerging African Christian scholars to promote mentorship and diverse research in African Christianity and to make this scholarship more visible beyond Africa. Since 2017, of my research concern has been centered on reform and renewal in the Church, especially following Pope Francis' call for a missionary conversion amd the crisis of clerical sexual abuse. The fruit of my research is being developed in my forthcoming book: Rome and the Margins: Reform and the Renewal in the Catholic Church Beyond the West.

I’m a successful teacher only if I can bring out the best in my students, supporting them as they draw their own personal graphs for success. For me, teaching is a service of love that holds us together, as Parker Palmer says, in “the grace of greater things.” I wish to help students embrace the liberating light of knowledge and the beauty of truth that holds us all in care if we can look beyond our limited horizons. My classroom is a “discovery channel” where encounters with truth transform all of us as we accompany each other in the learning process with love and respect. In this way, everyone sees the bigger picture and answers the call to participate in the search for knowledge and the good of order. The courses I teach are “Introduction to Catholicism,” “Introduction to African ​Catholicism, “Catholicism & Slavery,” “Sophomore Seminar in Multiculturalism,” and “Catholic Experience III: French Revolution to Present.” I use the historical, experiential pedagogy of case studies, problem-solving, and best practices in innovative teaching and learning to help my students gain creative skills to navigate uncharted waters and become architects of new ideas.