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Faith, Conversion and Religious Freedom in China

Room S-1.04 (First Basement) Strand Building
16/03/2016 (16:00-18:00)


The overarching question being posed in this seminar relates to the existential search for faith and belonging. The Reverend Doctor, Father Stephen Wang will give a three stranded talk covering (i) his family story as a context and opening up; (ii) the story of Christianity and Catholicism in China and (iii) the experience of the Chinese in the west in terms of faith journeys. Father Wang’s family story covers the mixture of Chinese and British in his heritage, the story of his Chinese family’s conversion to Christianity by protestant missionaries in China in the early 1900s and their inculturation in the UK, moving from China to the UK as a Chinese Christian family. The story of Father Wang’s own conversion will cover his time here in England as a mixed race Christian. He will share with us his experiences of connecting with Chinese Catholic history in Hong Kong and in Beijing, especially the story of Matteo Ricci, and the growth and tensions within the Catholic church in China today. The focus will then shift onto Father Wang’s sense of the Chinese in London as a university chaplain, what they are searching for in terms of faith, and the whole spectrum from unquestioning atheism through to committed Christianity. Connected to this will be the history of the Chinese Christian missions in London. Weaved through this seminar will be some philosophical reflections on existential choices in general and faith commitments in particular, and how these are both personal and cultural.

About the Speaker

Reverend Dr Stephen Wang is a priest and the Senior University Chaplain in the Diocese of Westminster. He is also a lecturer in Theology and Systematic Theology at Heythrop College, University of London. His work in the community involves chaplaincy ministry at Newman House Catholic Centre, and coordinating the student outreach for the Diocese. He is the author of Aquinas and Sartre, A Way of Life for Young Catholics, How to Discover Your Vocation, and The New Evangelisation. He has recently published The Christian Faith: A Mini-Catechism for Adults. Moreover, he is published in numerous academic journals and periodicals. 

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