Tag Archives: liberation spirituality

News about the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana – Jesuit University in Bogotá, Colombia

The International Relations Committee (IRC) of the Society for the Study of Christian Spirituality wants to promote the work of the Society by facilitating interaction between people and institutions across the world that are involved in the study of Spirituality. Diana Villegas, who lives in Colombia and recently joined the IRC, hereby offers a first report on her recent experience on work that is being done on Spirituality in Colombia. Readers who live and work in South America and who want to learn more about the Society or who want to share their interests and research are invited to contact Diana (dianavilsa@gmail.com).
Pieter G.R. de Villiers
President, SSCS

News about the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana – Jesuit University in Bogotá, Colombia
~Diana Villegas

The Theology Faculty of the Javeriana University has a solid commitment to research in spirituality, though currently professors of spirituality and research groups in spirituality are under systematics, one of three specialties in the theology department. (The others are Biblical studies and theology of action, most equivalent to practical theology.) Several professors focus on spirituality. Edith Gonzalez is interested in mysticism and did doctoral work on the Beguines. Rosana Navarro did her doctoral work on the spirituality of Etty Hillesum and continues to research her work. Hermann Rodriguez works on individual and community discernment in the tradition of Ignatius of Loyola. Orlando Solano has worked on the theology and spirituality of Gregory of Nyssa and Jorge Zurek specializes in Carmelite spirituality.

Professors Navarro, Rodriguez, Solano and Zurek together with a group of graduate students are engaged in an innovative group research project to analyze Latin American publications on liberation spirituality and examine development in teaching on this topic. The investigation is divided into four periods coinciding with the dates of the Latin American Bishops Conferences beginning with the Medellin conference which was strongly influenced by the emerging Liberation Theology. Two articles have been published in a peer reviewed journal corresponding to two periods, 1968 to 1979 (from the Medellin to the Puebla Conference) and 1979 – 1992 (Puebla to the Santo Domingo Conference). Two more articles are planned, one covering the period between 1992 (Puebla) and 2007 (the conference in Aparecida, Brazil); and a final article covering 2007 until the present.

The two published articles are:

Estupiñán, Miguel Ángel; Hoyos-Camacho, Adriana Alejandra; Navarro-Sanchez, Rosana Elena; Rodríguez-Osorio, Hermann; Solano-Pinzón, Orlando; Zurek-Lequerica, Jorge Antonio. “El despertar de la espiritualidad de la liberación: Evolución de sus expresiones desde Medellín hasta Puebla.” Cuestiones teológicas 40, no. 94 (2013): 405-31. http://www.scielo.org.co/pdf/cteo/v40n94/v40n94a06.pdf

Gómez-Díaz, Jairo; Hoyos-Camacho, Adriana Alejandra; Navarro-Sanchez, Rosana Elena; Rodríguez-Osorio, Hermann; Solano-Pinzón, Orlando; Zurek-Lequerica, Jorge Antonio. “El sentido teológico de una espiritualidad en camino: La espiritualidad de la liberación entre Puebla y Santo Domingo.” Cuestiones teológicas 43, no. 99 (2016): 149-74. https://revistas.upb.edu.co/index.php/cuestiones/article/view/6872/6283


Article: Authentic Subjectivity and Social Transformation, by Michael O’Sullivan

In his article appearing in the open access journal HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies, vol. 72, no. 4 (2016), Michael O’Sullivan stresses the significance of the Second Vatican Council in establishing a deep connection between Christian spirituality and engagement in social justice. The article’s abstract follows:

Holiness in the Christian tradition has often been understood in a way that devalues embodiment and practical engagement with the world of one’s time. The latter understanding, for example, led to Marx’s critique and repudiation of Christianity. Both interpretations of holiness can be understood as mistaken efforts to express the dynamism for authenticity in contextualised human subjectivity. Vatican 2 opposed both views by addressing itself to all people of good will, declaring that everyone was called to holiness, and that authentic Christian identity involved solidarity with the world of one’s time, especially those who are poor. Vatican 2, therefore, provided an authoritative faith foundation for holiness expressed through social commitment and for viewing social commitment on the part of people of good will in whatever state of life as a form of holiness. This vision was also the conviction of leading spirituality writers of the period, like Thomas Merton, and inspired liberation theologians and the Latin American Catholic bishops at their conference in Medellín a few years after the Council. The argument of this article is that the emergence and development of a non-dualist Christian spirituality is grounded methodologically in the correct appropriation of the common innate dynamism for authenticity in concrete human persons and lived spiritual experiences consistent with and capable of enhancing this dynamism.

The full article is available here.