Weaving Theology in Oceania: Culture, Context and Practice
Clear assessment of our needs in a global society, and sound creative solutions from an Oceanic perspective and beyond, form the subject matter of this book. Here, the cries of suffering from women in violent relationships, people yearning for growth and dignity, others with mental and emotional trauma, and mother Earth herself are heard, and enlist support and direction from those whose energy and insight are centred in faith, hope and love and firmly anchored in Christian professional academic endeavour.
The book is patterned after the woven mats, roof and sails of the great ocean-going canoe to image the diversity of content of this extraordinary gathering of hearts, hands and minds. While it reflects the global scholarly Christian concern and outreach indicative of our times, and a theological approach that is interactive and interdependent, it reveals a ‘weaving’ that is unfinished because the voyage must continue onwards, in an attitude of deep listening and open questioning.
As such, the work gathered here represents an energetic contribution towards courageous engagement in the travail that characterises our extraordinary transitional era as we move towards a new consciousness, and the book will be of particular interest to academic theologians, educationalists, Church authorities and pastoral workers from the Oceanic region. However, it will also inspire and inform comparable groups from other parts of the world simply because what is presented here has universal implications.
Beatrice Green is affiliated with the Australian Catholic University, where she has tutored in Theology for 20 years. She is an executive member of the Association of Practical Theology in Oceania, and a former President and Secretary of this association. Her PhD dissertation, “A Christological Interpretation of the Golden String of Bede Griffiths Spiritual Journey”, has generated further writing on interfaith dialogue, practical theology, and spirituality that has been published in academic books and journals.
Keiti Ann Kanongata’a SOLN works in the Diocese of Tonga and Niue, and is the Founder and Director of the Catholic Theological Institute for the Laity. With a strong interest in advancing the role of women in Oceania, she is co-founder of the Association of Pacific Women and Theology and the Association of Tongan Women Doing Theology. She is actively engaged in public policy and has facilitated Situational Analysis of the Tonga National HIV-AIDS programme. She is politically active through submissions to government and through peaceful action, and has published articles in various academic media.
"This collection of exciting new perspectives from Oceania demonstrates the centrality and creativity of practical theology today. It is startlingly fresh, contextual in the very best sense, and relevant to people’s actual lives. Highly recommended."
Professor Wayne Hudson Director, Centre for Public and Contextual Theology, Charles Sturt University, Australia
"This valuable collection of some sixteen essays proves the continuing health and vigour of practical theology in Oceania. The range and depth of the "weaving" involved in the writing and editing of these precious accounts provides not only a rich resource for theology today, but also testifies to the patient and genial editors who have brought all together for our benefit."
Professor Anthony Kelly, CSsR Australian Catholic University
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