The Tenth Anniversary of INSeCT
Ten years ago, on 4 August 1996, the International Network of Societies of Catholic Theology was founded at meeting held at Sherbrooke University, Québec, Canada. Peter Hünermann, invited a group of theologians representing Catholic societies of theology from various corners of the world: Mário Fabri dos Anjos (Sociedade de Teologia e Ciências de Religião, Brazil), Paul G. Crowley, SJ (Catholic Theological Society of America), Carlos Maria Galli (Sociedad Argentina de Teologia), Meinrad Hebga (Association Oecumenique des Theologiens Africaines), Christian Johansson (Sociedad Chilena de Teologia), Anne E. Patrick SNJM (Catholic Theological Society of America), Nico Schreurs (Europäische Gesellschaft für katholische Theologie), and Ignacio Mader Vargas, SDS (Associacion de Teologos Koinonia, Columbia).
The collective mandate of INSeCT is to promote the advancement of Catholic theology around the world. Its mission statement stands for a view of Catholic theology that fosters
- The pastoral mission of the Church
- Collaboration among those working in all the theological disciplines
- Interdisciplinary theological inquiry into the natural and human sciences
- Ecumenical and interfaith dialogue
Over the last ten years members of societies of Catholic theology attest to a growing awareness of the world church and the global character of Catholic theology, which reflects the ongoing reception of Vatican Council II. This new awareness can be stated in the following conviction:
The habitus of Catholic theology requires a new receptivity to the contributions of theologians from regions and cultures around the world and, consequently, necessitates the promotion of intercultural communication and collaboration among theologians in order to the disseminate new knowledge about local churches and social situations, and the impact of globalization, for the good of local churches and the universal church.
INSeCT, by means of its website and its assemblies, is committed to three goals:
- Support the development and growth of societies of Catholic theology around the world and facilitate the bilateral and multilateral collaboration of these societies;
- Improve intercultural communication and collaboration with members of societies of Catholic theology as well as with theologians in those regions of the world where there are no societies in existence;
- Make more information available about the state of Catholic theology in the various local, regional, and national contexts around the worldabout specific research projects, theological congresses, and conventions.
In keeping with these goals and to mark the occasion of the tenth anniversary of INSeCT, we are posting essays and collective discernments from a colloquium held in June 2005 devoted to the theme Catholic Theology Worldwide: Regional Challenges and New Developments, which brought together theologians from Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, Latin America, and North America.
Bradford Hinze, President, INSeCT