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Inculturation Conference on 29th November

Wednesday 3rd December 2014

On Saturday, Nov 29th, the Las Casas Institute hosted a conference - The strategies of inculturation – at Blackfriars Hall. The event was chaired by Dr Michael Oborne, Fellow of Blackfriars Hall.  

The conference began with a presentation about the first Englishman to evangelise India, Thomas Stephens SJ.  Stephens wrote an 11,000-verse Marathi epic poem, The Kristapurana, and this which was used to explain Christianity through Hindu literary forms. 

Fr Nelson Falcao SDB presented his translation of The Kristapurana, and underscored many of the strategies used by Stephens in approaching Hindu culture of the time. 

A panel of three presenters followed: 

  • Fr Michael Barnes SJ of Heythrop College, London, presented background material on Stephens, and his preparation as a student in Winchester and Rome which enabled him to view Hindu culture from a new perspective; 
  • Fr Martin Ganeri OP, Vice-Regent of Blackfriars Hall, commented on the theological and philosophical backgrounds to the western encounter with Hinduism; 
  • Fr Gerald Arbuckle SM, as a social anthropologist, presented remarks on the inculturation and inter-culturation in the context of modern cultures, particularly in the south Pacific. 

The Las Casas Institute seeks to explore the worlds of cultural and religious encounters as a means of promoting mutual recognition of the human person and the dignity of each tradition. 

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