Forthcoming events at the Centre

Our next public events

'Can There Be a Unified Theory of Religious Freedom?'

Wednesday 19th August, 5.15 - 6.30pm

Burns 1 Lecture Theatre

Open lecture with Professor Peter Danchin, (Professor of Law and Director of the International and Comparative Law Program at the University of Maryland School of Law). The three key concepts in modern religious freedom discourse are neutrality, universality and legality, each term defined in close relation to the others. What is increasingly recognised, however, is the extent to which these concepts are inextricably entangled, historically and substantively, with theological concepts and categories. In drawing out these connections and assessing their implications for three central questions concerning the subject, object and justification of the right to religious liberty, this lecture asks whether there can be a unified theory of religious freedom and in what sense we can say the right is independent of religious traditions and the contested notions of freedom within them.

More on Professor Peter Danchin:

Peter G. Danchin is Professor of Law and Director of the International and Comparative Law Program at the University of Maryland School of Law. In 2014-15 he was a Senior Research Fellow at the Center of Theological Inquiry, Princeton, when he co-led CTI's Inquiry on Law & Religious Freedom. His scholarship focuses on competing conceptions of the right to religious freedom in international law.

Recent publications include a Special Issue of South Atlantic Quarterly co-edited with Saba Mahmood titled Politics of Religious Freedom: Contested Genealogies (Duke University Press: 2014) and a Special Issue of the Maryland Journal of International Law on Politics of Religious Freedom: Case Studies. From 2011-2014, he was a member of the research project Politics of Religious Freedom: Contested Norms and Local Practices and in 2013-2014 he was an Andrew W. Mellon Visiting Fellow in law and religious studies at the University of Cape Town.

'The Art of Citizenship: The Role of Artists in the Scottish Independance Referendum'

Thursday 20th August, 5.15 - 6.30pm

Burns 1 Lecture Theatre

Open lecture with Professor William Storrar, (Director of the Centre of Theological Inquiry at Princeton and formerly Professor of Christian Ethics and Practical Theology at the University of Edinburgh).

More information to follow soon.

Podcasts now available for the recent events:

'Faith and Reconciliation: Insights from the South African Experience'. Open lecture with Emeritus Professor Piet Meiring, (Theology and Missiology, University of Pretoria, and a former member of the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission chaired by Desmond Tutu). Here

'Child Poverty: Myths, Misconceptions and Misunderstandings'. Open lecture with Professor Jonathan Boston, (Co-chair, Expert Advisory Group on Solutions to Child Poverty).  Here

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News and Events Archive

2015 events

30 July: 'The Laramie Project'. The open lecture with Dr David P. Gushee was followed by the screening of this film. The Laramie Project is an award-winning 2002 film, written and directed by Moisés Kaufman.

30 July: 'Changing Our Mind on the LGBT Issue'. Open lecture with Dr. David P. Gushee, (Distinguished University Professor of Christian Ethics and Director of the Center for Theology and Public Life at Mercer University).

19 July: 'Responding to Winds of Change: A Conversation on the Church in the Public Square'. Speakers included Marian Hobbs, (Facilitator of community engagement on social concerns, former MP and Cabinet Minister), Richard Randerson, (Anglican Bishop, author of Slipping the Moorings), and David Tombs, (Professor of Theology and Public Issues). The discussion was chaired by Rev Michael Wallace (Vicar of All Saints' Church). This event was sponsored by All Saints' Church and the Centre for Theology and Public Issues. Listen to the Radio NZ interview with Richard Randerson on Slipping the Moorings here. Read an article on this panel discussion in the Anglican Taonga here.

8 July: 'The Peaceful Unification of Korea'. Public seminar with Rev Dr Kangsil Lee (Church Minister in South Korea, on a sabbatical visit to Dunedin, sponsored by Knox Church through the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa NZ's Global Mission office).

28 May: 'Non-Toxic Religion: The Churches in the Peace Movement in 1980's New Zealand'. Open lecture with Reverend Dr Peter Matheson, (Presbyterian minister and Honorary Fellow of the Department of Theology and Religion at the University of Otago). Hosted by the Centre for Theology and Public Issues and the National Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies.

22 May: 'Conversation After Pentecost: The Shape of Distinctly Christian Engagements with the Postmodern Other'. Public seminar with Professor Trevor Hart, (Rector of Saint Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Scotland).

14 May: 'Syria Behind the Lines'. The open lecture with Chris Clarke, (World Vision New Zealand), was followed by a screening of the film 'Syria Behind the Lines', which examines the sectarian division in the conflict. The film (60 mins) was followed by a discussion.

14 May: 'Beauty and Brokenness: Reflections on the Syrian Crisis'. Chris Clarke, (Chief Executive, World Vision New Zealand), spoke on the devastating impact this crisis has had on a generation of Syrian children, and asked "Where is God in all of this?". Chris has spent most of his career in the public health sector and is a visiting scholar at Green Templeton College, Oxford University.

30 April: 'Paycheck to Paycheck: The Life and Times of Katrina Gilbert'. The conversation with Mark Powell was followed by a screening of the film 'Paycheck to Paycheck: The Life and Times of Katrina Gilbert'.

30 April: 'Public Conversation with Mark Powell'. Professor Murray Rae (Department of Theology and Religion) was in conversation with Mark Powell (CEO of The Warehouse). Topics for his conversation included: a living wage; Chief Excutive Pay; economic inequality; Christian approaches to business, and more.

16 April: 'In My Country' Film Screening. Based on the acclaimed book Country of My Skull by Antjie Krog, an Afrikaans poet who covered TRC hearings for South African radio.

16 April: 'Faith and Reconciliation: Insights from the South African Experience'. Open lecture by Emeritus Professsor Piet Meiring, (Theology and Missiology, University of Pretoria, and a former member of the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission chaired by Desmond Tutu). View the notes from the lecture here Pre-requisites for Forgiveness, Faith and Reconciliation. View the podcast here.

24 March: 'Romero' Film Screening. The film was preceded by a CTPI panel discussion on Freedom of Speech. This powerful film features Romero's time as Archbishop of San Salvador, when he became known as a 'Voice for the Voiceless' until his murder on 24 March 1980.

24 March: 'Freedom of Speech: Rights and Responsibilities?' panel discussion with Associate Professor Greg Dawes, (Department of Philosophy), Dr Najibullah Lafraie, (Department of Politics), Mr Murray Kirkness, (Editor of Otago Daily Times), Associate Professor Selene Mize, (Faculty of Law), Professor David Tombs, (Centre for Theology and Public Issues) and chaired by Professor Murray Rae, (Department of Theology and Religion).

11 February: Hosted the launch of the Salvation Army's annual state-of-the-nation report, 'A Mountain All Can Climb'.

2014 events

17 October: 2014 Quaker Lecture: Standing in this Place an open lecture with David James, Jillian Wychel, Murray Short and Linda Wilson. Hosted by the Society of Friends, in association with the Centre for Theology and Public Issues. Listen to the audio recording here

11 August: The Marriage Amendment Act One Year On: How are the Churches Responding? An open panel with Rt Rev’d Kelvin Wright, (Anglican Bishop of Dunedin); Rev'd Greg Hughson, (University Chaplain); Rt Rev'd Dr Graham Redding, (Principal of Knox Centre for Ministry and Leadership, and former Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand); Rev'd Mark Chamberlain, (Roman Catholic Priest, Church of the Holy Name); Rev'd Dr Bruce Hamill, (Minister at Coastal Unity Presbyterian Church and Convenor of the Doctrine Core Group, Presbyterian Church of Aotearoa New Zealand); Mr Neill Ballantyne, (Queer Support Officer, OUSA). This event was hosted by the Centre for Theology and Public Issues and Otago University Students’ Association Queer Support.

17 July: Future Visions: Ecology, Economics at the End of the World. Open lecture with Dr Andrew Shepherd (Adjunct Lecturer in Theology; Dr Andrew Shepherd has worked as a Research Fellow and Teaching Fellow at the Centre for Theology and Public Issues, University of Otago. He is the National Co-Director for A Rocha Aotearoa New Zealand, a Christian conservation movement). This was followed by the launch of his book, The Gift of the Other: Levinas, Derrida, and a Theology of Hospitality (Eugene, OR:. Pickwick Publications, 2014).

7 July: Believers of the World - Unite. Otago Tertiary Chaplaincy and Dunedin Abrahamic Interfaith Group Eleventh Annual Open Peace Lecture with Rev Dr Lord Leslie Griffiths, (Dr Griffiths, the Lord Griffiths of Burry Port, is a Methodist Minister and Superintendent of Wesley’s Chapel, London, and a Labour member of the House of Lords). Introduced by Vice-Chancellor Professor Harlene Hayne.

7 July: How to communicate meaningfully with ordinary people - the challenge to Theology. Seminar with Rev Dr Lord Leslie Griffiths, (Superintendent Minister of Wesley’s Chapel, London, and a member of the House of Lords).

12 June: Child Poverty: Myths, misconceptions and misunderstandings. An open lecture with Professor Jonathan Boston, (Co-chair, Expert Advisory Group on Solutions to Child Poverty). View the powerpoint from the lecture here. View the podcast  here.

12 June: Governing for the Future: Stewardship, sustainability and the tyranny of the present. An open lecture with Professor Jonathan Boston, (Professor of Public Policy, Victoria University School of Government). View the powerpoint from the lecture here

26 March: Religious Leaders Building Peace and the Practice of Interfaith Dialogue: Drawing on the Experiences of Mindanao, Burundi and Nigeria. A public conversation with Professor Ed Garcia (Senior Conflict Advisor at International Alert in London), Dr Najibullah Lafraie (Department of Politics), Dr Sung Yong Lee (Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies) and the Revd Greg Hughson (University Chaplain).

18 March: Third World Development: Opportunities and Challenges. The Centre hosted three National Directors from World Vision's offices around the globe, who each made a short presentation and answered questions on 'Hot Topics in Development' such as: Tackling poverty in conflict situations - Alex Snary, (National Director, World Vision Jerusalem-West Bank-Gaza); When doing good does harm - Gilbert Kamanga, (National Director, World Vision Uganda); When aid and business collide - Chris Herink, (National Director, World Vision Myanmar). Chaired by Chris Clarke, (CEO of World Vision New Zealand).

17 March: Public Conversation with Archbishop John Sentamu. This was another chance to hear the Archbishop John Sentamu, (the Archbishop of York), in conversation with Archbishop Philip Richardson, (Archbishop of the New Zealand Dioceses). The conversation ranged widely over issues concerning the church locally and internationally, and considered particular projects and themes of Archbishop Sentamu's own work in the UK.

17 March: Poverty: Global and Local. A one-day symposium with Archbishop John Sentamu, (the Archbishop of York), and his wife Margaret Sentamu, (Principal Consultant and Head of Diversity at Odgers & Berndtson). Other speakers included the Revd Jono Ryan (New Zealand Co-ordinator of Servants to Asia's Urban Poor), Professor David Fielding (Professor of Economics, Otago Business School) and Gillian Bremner (CEO of Presbyterian Support). The symposium considered the nature, causes and extent of poverty and explored strategies for alleviating poverty that make a difference both locally and globally.

13 February: Hosted the launch of the Salvation Army's annual state-of-the-nation report, 'Striking a Better Balance'.

 

© Centre for Theology and Public Issues
Department of Theology and Religion
University of Otago
PO Box 56
Dunedin 9054
Aotearoa/New Zealand

Tel 643 479 8450
Email ctpinz@otago.ac.nz