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PCTII Newsletter #17

Winter 2002

An international conference on the future of Christianity in the western world, held on the campus of the University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand, has exploded the twin myths that secularism will continue to rise and inevitably will result in the death of Christianity. The Conference was hosted by the University’s School of Liberal Arts, whose Dean, Professor Gerald Pillay, described it as one of the most important conferences on Christianity held at the University for many years. More than 160 delegates, including leading international sociologists David Martin of the London School of Economics, and Robert Wuthnow of Princeton University, and other presenters from England, the United States, Australia, and New Zealand, discussed the impact of secularisation on Christianity in the West, and concluded that - as Harvey Cox has put it - "today it is secularity, not Christianity, that may be headed for extinction".
The Conference found that although the nature of Christianity belonging in the West was changing, this did not necessarily imply a loss of spirituality or of Christian belief. Instead, the old Christendom model was fragmenting, and this created the context within which vibrant new forms of Christian life and faith – such as Pentecostalism – were emerging and growing. The ways in which Western Christianity would be practised would be quite different in the future from historic and present models. This process of change was ongoing and continuing, and adaptability might well prove to be the most necessary characteristic of Western Christianity in the 21st century.
For information about the conference, contact Dr Brett Knowles.

The Charismatic Themes in Luke-Acts and Related Issues Study Group of the Evangelical Theological Society, will meet in Toronto at the national meeting of the society in the Regency Hotel on November 21 and 22, 2002. The agenda is as follows: NOV. 21, "Paul's Troubling Question to Disciple-Believers at Acts 19:2a in Light of an Examination of the Literary Style of Composition of Questions in Luke-Acts," Paul Elbert, Church of God Theological Seminary. NOV. 22, "Pentecostal Hermeneutics and A Critique of the Evangelical Historical-Critical Method" Kenneth Archer, Church of God Theological Seminary. "What Does It Mean Today To Be Spirit-Filled?," Charles Holman, Regent University. Response to "What Does It Mean?" by Gregg Allison, Western Seminary "Cessationism: Did the Epicureans and Warfield Get It Right?," Gene Green, Wheaton College "Proclamation in Acts Today in the Apostolic Tradition," Trevor Grizzle, Oral Roberts University.

Pentecostals and Presybterians: A Conversation on Word and Spirit, Church and World, November 15, 2002. Dr. Anna Case-Winters, professor of systematic theology at McCormick, will present a Reformed perspective and Dr. Samuel Solivan, professor of Theology at the InterAmerican University in Puerto Rico, will present a Pentecostal perspective on Word and Spirit, Church and World.
Word and Spirit, Church and World
is a publication that grew out of the first cycle of an international dialogue between Pentecostal and Presbyterian/Reformed Christians.  Word and Spirit, Church and World explores critical themes that both unite Pentecostal and Reformed Christians as well as topics that divide them.  The objective of the dialogue was for both churches to gain a greater understanding of one another, to explore their common concerns, and to confront their differences.  The dialogue was held between 1995 and 2000 under the auspices of some Pentecostal leaders and the World Alliance of Reformed Churches.
The Conversation on Word and Spirit, Church and World to be held at McCormick will provide an opportunity for Christians from Pentecostal and Reformed congregations across the various ethnic and racial communities to increase their mutual understanding of each other.
Dr. Samuel Solivan is an ordained minister of the Assemblies of God.  He has served as the president of the Society of Pentecostal Studies and has participated in various ecumenical dialogues, including a dialogue between Pentecostals and the World Council of Churches.  Currently, he is a member of the faculty at the InterAmerican University in Puerto Rico.  He earned the Ph.D. at Union Theological Seminary in New York.  Dr. Solivan is the author of various publications, including The Spirit, Pathos, and Liberation: Toward an Hispanic Pentecostal Theology.
Dr. Anna Case-Winters is a minister of the Word and Sacrament within the Presbyterian Church (USA).  She serves on the North American Committee of the World Alliance of Reformed Churches.  She has participated in numerous ecumenical events.  She has been member of the faculty at McCormick Theological Seminary since 1986.  She earned the Ph.D. at Vanderbilt University.  Dr. Case-Winters is the author of various publications, including Divine Power: Traditional Understandings and Contemporary Challenges.
Dr. David Daniels, Associate Professor of Church History at McCormick will moderate the conversation.

A conference devoted to the theme “The Holy Spirit and Ecumenism,” sponsored by The Cardinal Suenens Center of John Carroll University, Cleveland, Ohio, USA, was held at the Ecumenical Monastery of Bose, Italy, 14-20 October, 2002. Twenty visiting scholars from Europe, North America, and South Africa represented a cross section of Christian communities – Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Anglican, Lutheran, Reformed, Methodist, Mennonite, Pentecostal and Quaker – and affirmed their unity in the Holy Spirit as a first step before the more difficult issues that divide the churches (e.g., doctrine and church order) could be broached.
The Cardinal Suenens Center at John Carroll University, Cleveland, Ohio, responds to the ecumenical legacy of its namesake, Leon-Joseph Cadinal Suenens (1904-1996), one of the principal moderators of the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965).
The group produced a statement titled "The Holy Spirit, the Church and Christian Unity."
An earlier conference sponsored by The Cardinal Suenens Center on “The Holy Spirit and Ecumenism” was held in Louvain, Belgium, 15-16 December, 1999.
Contact: Prof. Doris Donnelly, Director, The Cardinal Suenens Center

The Japan Society for Pentecostal Studies will host its second symposium October 28-29 at the Kobe Lutheran Bible School.

The fourth annual conference of the Asian Pentecostal Society was held in Bangalore, India, on August 19 and 20th. The theme of the conference was “Pentecostal Spirituality in Asian Contexts.” Dr. John Thanickal, former member of the Pentecostal World Conference Advisory Board, and President of New Life Bible College, Bangalore, inaugurated the conference. Dr. Ivan Satyvrata, President, Southern Asia Bible College, Bangalore, gave the inaugural address. The following papers were presented at the conference.

  1. Feminist Hermeneutics and Pentecostal Spirituality by Dr. Joseph Abraham, New Theological College, Dehra Dun India
  2. Yongi Cho’s Theology of Blessing: Its Locus and Challenges by Dr. Wonsuk Ma, Asia Pacific Theological Seminary, Baguio City, Philippines
  3. Globalisation and Ecumenism: A Search for Human Solidarity, with reference to Pentecostalism/Charismatism in Hong Kong by Dr. Lap Yan Kung, Chinese University of Hong Kong
  4. Indigenous Korean Pentecostal Movement: Prayer Mountains by Dr. Yeol Soo Eim, Gospel Theological Seminary, S. Korea
  5. Reflections on Indian Pentecostalism: Trends, and Issues by Rev. Gabriel Rueben, South Asian Institute of Advanced Christian Studies, Bangalore, India
  6. Issues Facing Pentecostal Leadership by Dr. Chin Do Kham, Asia Pacific Theological Seminary, Baguio City, Philippines
  7. Pentecostal Spirituality in a Post-Modern World by Ms. Rebecca Jayachandran, Southern Asia Bible College, Bangalore, India
  8. An Ethical Critique of Pentecostal Spirituality in Indian Context by Dr. M. Stephen, Faith Theological Seminary, Manakala, India

Here is a press release for the first session of the second round (2001) of international dialogue between the World Alliance of Reformed Churches (WARC) and some Pentecostals.

The Future of Christianity in the West: An International Conference. Call for Papers University of Otago, 5-8 December 2002
The University of Otago will host  an international, interdisciplinary conference on the future of Christianity in the West, 5-8 December 2002.

Conference themes
• the future of Christianity in the West
• Secularization, R.I.P.?
• Christianity in Australia and New Zealand: past, present, and future
• Western Christianities: European, American, and Australasian patterns compared
• Christianity and the public sphere: problems and prospects
• the impact of globalization and religious pluralism on religious life in Western societies
Keynote speakers include:
• Professor David Martin, emeritus professor of sociology at the London School of Economics. Professor Martin, one of the world's leading sociologists of religion, has written many important books, including Pacifism: An Historical and Sociological Study, A General Theory of Secularisation, The Dilemmas of Contemporary Religion, Tongues of Fire: The Explosion of Protestantism in
Latin America, and Does Christianity Cause War? (Oxford, 1997).
• Professor Robert Wuthnow, professor of sociology at Princeton University. Professor Wuthnow's many distinguished publications include The Restructuring of American Religion, Acts of Compassion: Caring for Others and Helping Ourselves, God and Mammon in
America, After Heaven: Spirituality in America since the 1950s, and Growing Up Religious: Christians and Jews and their Journeys of Faith.
 Professors Martin and Wuthnow will be joined by leading historians, sociologists, theologians, philosophers, legal, religious studies, and other humanities scholars from New Zealand, Australia, and elsewhere for this exciting, international interdisciplinary conference.
Location: The conference will be held at the beautiful Dunedin campus of the University of Otago, New Zealand's oldest university, 5-8 December 2002. Conference attenders may wish to stay on to see Dunedin's yellow-eyed penguins, giant albatrosses, and seal colonies. In the hinterland, the mountains, lakes, rivers, and wineries of sunny Central Otago beckon.

Paper proposals: We invite scholars who would like to present 30 minute papers to this conference to submit abstracts of no more than 200 words, with a brief cv, to the conference secretary, Nicola Richmond (School of Liberal Arts, University of Otago, P.O. Box 56, Dunedin, New Zealand). The organizers would appreciate expressions of interest, and paper proposals, as soon as possible. Proposals will be reviewed when they are received. Closing date for offers of papers is 1 May 2002.

 A congress on "One Hundred Years of Psychology and Religion" will be held May 26-28, 2003 at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. In 1902, William James published his paper "Varieties of Religious Experience" that initiated the research area of psychology and religion. Papers for parallel sessions are welcome on (1) General theoretical, historical and methodological issues; (2) William James and his contemporaries; (3) Emotion and Cognition; (4) Education and Development; (5) Social and cultural issues; (6) Pastoral Care. To respond to the call for papers, please send a 200 word summary of your presentation to Dr. Peter H.M.P. Roelofsma from the Dept. of Psychology at the Vrije Universiteit.

The Asian Pentecostal Society will convene August 19-20 in Banglore, India. The theme is "Pentecostal Spirituality in Asian Contexts." For more information, please contact Dr. Paulson Pulikottil.

Hollenweger Center/PentecoStudies. Dr. Cornelis van der Laan announces the recent founding of The Hollenweger Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Pentecostal and Charismatic Movements by faculty members of the Vrije Universiteit (Amsterdam) and of Azusa theologische hogeschool. As one of the activities of the Center, an electronic journal will soon be published under the name of PentecoStudies: Online Journal for the Scientific Study of Pentecostalism and the Charismatic Movement. This journal will consist of two sections: one dealing with topics in the field of the social sciences and the other with topics of a theological nature. Each article will be submitted to blind peer review and will be published as soon as it has been approved. The journal is not published in issues but in annual volumes, archived on the website. Once accepted, an article is added to the website. The journal will also contain a book review section.
The Center was established to promote the academic study of Pentecostalism and charismatic movements. The Center is an interdisciplinary project, in which several disciplinary approaches combine strengths. It has its own PhD program linked to the Vrije Universiteit. Members of the board include, Dr. Andre Droogers, Dr. Johannes Tennekes, Hijme Stoffels and Dr. Cees van der Laan. Barbara Boudewijnse is of great assistance in this early phase of the project. The Center has been called after professor Walter Hollenweger, one of the founders of the field of Pentecostal studies, in recognition of his lifelong contribution to the study of Pentecostalism and charismatic movements. It is also a way of expressing our gratitude for the generous gesture professor Hollenweger made in offering his library to the Center. We are proud of this addition to the infrastructure of the Center and feel that we thus have become excellently equipped for our task. Especially the PhD program will profit from this donation.
Let us add a few words with regard to the medium we use. The electronic journal is an attempt to use new technologies for well-known academic purposes. It requires no subscriptions. It has no deadlines. Readers are free to download from the journal at the Center's website whatever they may find of value and to print any papers they find interesting. In the case of an electronic journal the printing is not done by a publisher but by the consumer and is therefore not only much cheaper but also better for the environment. Because of the electronic format, it is possible to combine different disciplines in one journal, something that is not regular practice in printed journals. In the electronic version the 'reader' can choose on the opening page to look at the social sciences or the theology section. The technical possibilities are numerous (e.g. indexing, hyper-links, sound and video fragments). In addition, the journal will be accompanied by a discussion list in which responses to the journal's articles but also other topics of current interest to students of this field can be shared with colleagues.  The website where the journal is located will contain general information on Pentecostalism and charismatic movements, as well as links to other interesting websites. Although this website is still under construction, you can already visit it at the following address: http://casnws.scw.vu.nl/PentecoStudies

Geir Lie has launched Refleks - med karismatisk kristendom i fokus. The first issue due out in February will feature articles from the November 2001 Karismatisk Forum seminar, held in conjunction with the Lutheran School of Theology in Oslo. Coming historical and theological articles will include contributions in the  English language.

Dr. Harold D. Hunter has been designated webmaster for PCCNA. The site, still under construction, can be located by simply entering www.pccna.org. Scholars will be interested in papers presented to the conferences, especially those delivered in 1994. Go here for a press release.

Please note the visit to Rome in 2000 of the Joint College of African American Pentecostal Bishops. Another account of the visit is given here. For more information about this group, look at the United Pentecostal Churches of Christ and the Joint College of African American Pentecostal Bishops.

The report from the August, 2001 meeting of the WCC-Pentecostal Joint Consultative Group has been released.

Nov 11, 2001: PCTII completed the move from a Unix server to an NT server. If you encounter problems with logging on in coming days, please use the new ip address:  rather than simply www.pctii.org The move resulted in a few changes like a new user id for the database. Reports of technical problems resulting from this move or the new id for those enrolled in the database should be sent to Dr. Harold D. Hunter.

The Asia Pacific Theological Seminary, Baguio, Philippines, is starting the second co-hort of its Masters of Theology in Pentecostal Studies from July 2002. The program requires the course work designed in four 6-week modules for two years, and a thesis. This allows the students to continue their respective ministry while traveling to Baguio twice a year. This is a appropriate preparation for the University of Wales Ph.D. program that APTS is now offering in the Philippines. For more information, check www.apts.edu

Go here for news about the launching of a Latin American and Caribbean Council of Pentecostal Churches.

"Growing Up Pentecostal:  A Collection of Memories from the Fire Baptized." Location: Texas, United States. Call for Papers Deadline: 2002-05-01. Scholars have examined Pentecostalism from various ideological perspectives, and adherents have offered testimonies of their experiences in traditional religious settings.  Yet absent from that metanarrative are the personal accounts of practicing and non-practicing Pentecostal students and scholars whose formative years were shaped by Pentecostal liturgy and ritual.  This call for papers represents an attempt to fill that void.  Writers are encouraged to submit autobiographical essays of 500 to 800 words examining the following topics and others: early childhood years;  adolescence, and adulthood;  work and play;  pants, fingernail polish, and lipstick; faith meets philosophy;  saints and "ain'ts";  shut-ins;  shouting;  speaking in tongues;  getting saved; healing; dreams, visions, and prophecies; race, class, gender and generational issues. Contact information: Dr. Karen Kossie-Chernyshev, Department of History, Texas Southern University, 3100 Cleburne, Houston, TX  77004

Members of the WCC-Pentecostal Joint Consultative Group gathered August 27 - Sept 1 for their second meeting at the Seminario Sudamericano, a seminary of the Church of God (Cleveland, TN), outside Quito, Ecuador. The theme chosen for the week was Perceptions of One Another.  A full report, which will eventually be made available here, outlines the straightforward exchanges.

The International Charismatic Consultation on World Evangelism (ICCOWE) is now online. ICCOWE sponsored Brighton '91 as well as regional conferences in Malaysia and Prague and elsewhere.

To celebrate the centennial of the Pentecostal movement, the Asian Journal of Pentecostal Studies has published rare historical studies of the movement in various Asian countries, including India (2 articles), Nepal, Indonesia, Philippines, Korea, Japan, Thailand, Myanmar, and Vietnam. Some studies are the very first such published works. The full text can be accessed online (vol. 4, nos. 1-2). The subscription rates are modest: $10.00 (Asia) and $15.00 (other areas including Australia and New Zealand) per year with two issues. If interested in receiving a sample copy (although we cannot promise any issue of vol. 4), please contact the editor, Dr. Wonsuk Ma.

Starting in 2003, Paternoster Press will launch the "Studies in Charismatic and Pentecostal Series" with a goal of publishing three volumes a year. There are two levels of writing anticipated. The one will look at doctoral dissertations, masters' theses, research projects as revised to ensure accessibility, relevance, and clarity of expression for the intended readership. The other will intended for leaders, pastors, theological students and educated laypersons. It is projected that for every one publication of the former, two of the latter group will be printed. The editorial board comprises Profs. Max Turner and Andrew Walker and Drs. Keith Warrington, Neil Hudson and Mark Cartledge. Interested contributors are encouraged to contact Dr. Warrington.