CTS not Participating in Congress This Year and List of Accepted Proposals

(list of accepted proposals follows)


To members of the Canadian Theological Society


I hope that you, your families, and friends and colleagues are well, and managing in these uncertain and difficult times.


As you may know, the CFHSS (Canadian Federation of Humanities and Social Sciences), which organizes the annual Congress, recently decided that there will not be an in-person congress in 2020. Instead, the Federation has decided to move the Congress online.


The CTS Executive met on March 23 to discuss CTS participation in this year’s Congress and whether we should hold our annual conference. After much thoughtful discussion, the Executive decided that the CTS would not participate in the Congress, would cancel this year’s annual conference, but will have a short business meeting online later this year.


The Executive decided, moreover, that we will carry this year’s theme forward to next year, and that all the papers accepted for the 2020 Congress are automatically accepted for the 2021 Congress at the University of Alberta. An official list of these papers will be posted on the CTS website in few days with the help of the professionals in web maintenance from bestwebsitehosting.ca. We also decided to award the graduate student essay prize, and will offer our usual travel subsidies for those students who wish to present their papers in 2021.


There were many reasons for the Executive’s decision.


We believe that what makes our annual conference particularly valuable is the face-to-face contact, where we have creative formal and informal interaction, exchange of research, and networking. We believe that the proposed online format will not allow us to have this, and will impose additional burdens on many. And, besides, the need for ‘in person’ meeting is especially important given the conference theme of Bridging Divides: Confronting Colonialism and Anti-Black Racism.


We also recognize that this is a challenging time for many: that many find themselves under stress as they deal with new home and work and study environments; that, for many, their responsibilities have increased significantly; that many of our students are experiencing distress; and that it is not an easy time to read, to write, and to focus.


Further, a number of cognate societies, including several of the CCSR (Canadian Corporation for Studies in Religion), have decided already not to participate in this year’s Congress – and this, too, would certainly detract from the kind of exchange that normally occurs at the Congress.


To conform to requirements of being an incorporated society and to provide financial statements, executive reports, and related matters, to you, our members, we will, however, have an online AGM, with details to be determined in early May. You’ll hear more about this soon thereafter.


We appreciate that the Congress organisers are in a difficult situation, and that they are trying to do the best that they can in the circumstances. Nevertheless, the current and continuing stresses on potential participants, and our view that our annual conference is to be a place for the kind of exchange and discussion that an online medium cannot currently adequately accommodate, lead us to the conclusion we must suspend our conference this year.


On behalf of the CTS Executive, I send our best wishes and prayers to you and those close to you. We will stay in contact with you through the summer and in the coming year as we move through these times, and towards our conference next year in Edmonton.


Will Sweet

President, Canadian Theological Society



Canadian Theological Society

2020 Annual Conference

Bridging Divides



List of Accepted Proposals:


Brian Bajzek, Christ The King Seminary

“A Church Challenged by Christ: Decentering Ecclesial Privilege through the Crux of Horizontal and Vertical Alterity”


Jane Barter, University of Winnipeg

“And Yet Where in Our History Books is the Tale? Thinking Theologically about the National Inquiry’s Report on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls”


David Byrne, University of St. Michael’s College

“An Ointment Poured Over the Wounds or Preventative of a Common Future for All? Assessing the Role of Reparations in dialogue with Ada Maria Isasi-Diaz’s Theory of Justice as Reconciliatory Praxis”


Zane Chu, Regis College

“Decolonizing Christian Love: Thomas Aquinas as Problematic and as Resource”


Elexa Davis, Rachel Lingnau, Megan Palmer, Concordia University (Edmonton)

“Women’s Perspectives on Religiosity and Healing from Historical Trauma: Jewish Canadians and Indigenous Peoples of Canada”


Liam Farrer, Regis College

“A Modest Proposal for the Development of a First Nations, Metis, and Inuit Ordinariate in the Catholic Church in Canada”


Rob Fennell, Atlantic School of Theology

“Problematizing Pilgrimage: Theological Reconsideration of Contemporary Spiritual Tourism”


Jean-Pierre Fortin, University of St. Michael’s College

“Redeeming Memory: Rewriting Canadian History and Theology with Lee Maracle, Terry LeBlanc and Thomas King”


Chris Hrynkow, St. Thomas More College

“Greening Unity in Diversity: Canadian Ecotheological Perspectives and a Vital Ethical Future”


Christine Jamieson, Concordia University (Montreal)

“Indigenous Spirituality: Resiliency and Encounter”


Sarah Johnson, University of Notre Dame

“Bridging the Divides between Religion and Nonreligion in Canada”


Sasha Kovalchuk, McMaster University

“Political Theology of Sanctuary Cities: Preliminary Findings of a Political Science Literature Review”


Fiona Li, Regis College

“Red Dresses: A Feminist Theological Response to the Systemic Oppression of Indigenous Women and Girls in Canada”


Abigail Lofte, University of St. Michael’s College

“Finding Eden in the Urban Jungle: The Greening of City Planning”


Carolyn Mackie, Wycliffe College

“Guilt and Responsibility: The Church as Repentant Sinner(s)”

(Student Essay Contest Winner)


Monica Marcelli-Chu, Regis College

“Learning to Be Challenged by An-Other’s Will: Receptivity in Theological Virtue Ethics”


Stephen Martin, The King’s University

“Theology, Democracy, and the Common Life”


Kate McCray, University of St. Michael’s College

“Imagined Erasure: Fieldnotes on Genocide from the Christian East”


Nestor Medina, Emmanuel College

“Morality, the Church and Ethnoracial Relations in Colonial Latin America”


Eun Suk Oh, Knox College

“Remembering the Future: A Eucharistic Vision of Unity in Bodiliness”


Nick Olkovich, St. Mark’s College

“After Liberalism: Constructing ‘the People’ in Post-Conciliar Catholic Theology”


Hanbyul Park, Emmanuel College

“Who Makes Just Hospitality? Three Types of Moral Agency and Their Contributions to De-Colonizing and Re-Humanizing Christian Hospitality in the Canadian Multicultural Context”


Karola Radler, Stellenbosch University

“The Abstract Contrast: Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Christological Disclosure of the Heretical Foundation of Carl Schmitt’s Theory of State”


Gordon Rixon, Regis College

“Discernment, Preferences and (Mature) Secularized Society”


Chanelle Robinson, Boston College

“Viola Desmond and Womanist Theologies of Resistance”


Don Schweitzer, St. Andrew’s College

“Jesus’ Resurrection Enlarges Our Hearts”


Peter Slater, Trinity College

“The Wisdom Principle in/on Religion”




Michael Stoeber, Regis College

“Nick Black Elk’s Christian-Lakota Liberation Spirituality and Its Implications for Decoloniality Issues”


Steven Studebaker, McMaster Divinity College

“Pentecost and Transcending Tribalism”


Hyung Jin Kim Sun, Emmanuel College

“A Theo-Ethical Praxis of Situating Oneself & Just-Bridging”


Kelly VanBuskirk, University of New Brunswick

“‘Do as we say, and also as we do’: An Anglican opportunity to import Scriptural conflict resolution directives into secular workplaces”


Becca Whitla, St. Andrew’s College

“The Empire Sings: Confronting Coloniality in Hymns”