Table of contents
Why the theme of Crisis?
This project and this theme have its root in the exchange of ideas and themes that took place various years ago in the Board of Editors. Felix Wilfred raised the question of the ‘church in crisis’ in the search for new issues to be addressed by Concilium and obtained many reactions in this regard. Following this conversation among both the BoD and the BoE, and given the urgency of some of the issues we face in today’s church, it was decided that the first edition of Concilium Online should be on the crisis in the Church. The importance of this kind of discussion, and the need for a theological dialogue and engagement with themes around this topic, has become more urgent with the uncertainties and complexities we have witnessed since 2020.
We have seen clearly some of the signs of the crisis in our Church from different parts of the world. We will like to point out to you some of the new questions arising from some of the signs of this crisis. These questions are not exhaustive. However, we hope they might offer you some few prompts for a deeper theological analysis and concrete pastoral intervention and greater social engagement in shaping the focus of your article for Concilium Online:
What we are looking for from Contributors
The content and style of the essays will be the same as the print edition. However, we are looking for essays that are not simply theoretical, but essays that are rich in stories, and that draw from the real-life experiences and examples of the life or social realities of people from all around the world.
What this means is that your essay should not simply tell (generalized reflection), but rather should show (grounded concrete engagement with a social fact or an event, news story that can draw people into the story in an intuitive manner).
We also hope that essayists will take into consideration the need to hold two things in constant dialogue in this online edition: First, the crisis in the Church: How does the story, event, or issue which you address show that there is a crisis in the Church. Second, Transformation of the Church beyond the analysis of the crisis or critical comments, what intervention measures are you proposing? In other words, ‘what next’ are you bringing to the table that will contribute in the transformation of the Church.
Your essay should be written in two ways: first, you could write it as a purely academic essay with references (you don’t need to include a bibliography). Second, you may write as a reflective theological essay as an opinion on a topic while maintaining theological and scientific rigor, without populated it with references. In either case, however, please note that the goal of the online edition is to open Concilium to a newer and wider readership of both academic and non-academic readers, and to use the online edition as a forum for ongoing conversation between our readers and our writers on current issues of pertinence to faith and witness. We hope that the online edition will stimulate some interesting and helpful conversations as we move forward. We intend to publish the essays as they arrive unlike the print edition, so we will be publishing essays in blocks of 4-5.
We hope to group the essays that will be submitted around these three broad areas and will like you to indicate in the Key Words for your essay the categories below to which your essay belongs:
a) the crisis of the church in a general sense: universal church-local church relationship, authority in the church, election of ecclesial guides/leaders, ministries/ministeria, women and church, violence and power, sacraments today, etc.
b) the churches in their context, social engagement, church and politics, religion and violence, church and racism: the various local and global manifestations of the crisis we are going through in the World Church.
c) particular, though absolutely necessary, issues: abuse, financial scandals, reform of the Roman curia, religious life, priestly life, celibacy, Catholic education, spirituality, liturgy and sacramentality, etc.