Peter Phan on migration, mission and spirituality at 2021 World Mission Institute

February 8, 2021

The World Mission Institute’s 2021 Conference focuses on migration, mission, and spirituality, and the strong connection among all three. Peter C. Phan delivers the keynote address, “Is the Christian God a Migrant?” Thursday, March 11, 7 p.m. Central time via Zoom. The event will also be livestreamed on the McCormick Theological Seminary Facebook page. Register for the Zoom link at http://bit.ly/worldmissioninstitute.

The World Mission Institute is sponsored by the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago (LSTC), Catholic Theological Union, McCormick Theological Seminary and A Center of Christian-Muslim Engagement for Peace and Justice at LSTC. 

About the keynote

The great tragedy of today’s migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers must be at the center of the mission of the church and engaging in such a mission requires a deep spirituality of mercy, tenderness, compassion, hospitality, and prophetic courage.

Phan’s keynote address grounds such a spirituality in the very being and mission of God. To be God, he suggests, is to be a migrant, to be on a journey in search of and in solidarity with all of humanity and the entire created world. To be committed to mission is to be in solidarity with this migrant God, to be signs of God’s healing presence, to be witnesses to God’s suffering in the world, to be challenges to the powers who force migration, who reject migrants, who abuse their humanity. Mission and spirituality come together as Christians recognize the presence of God in the poorest of the poor today.

About the speaker

Peter C. Phan is the Ignacia Ellacuria, S.J., Chair of Catholic Social Thought, Georgetown University, Washington, D.C. He is a native of Vietnam who emigrated as a refugee to the U.S. in 1975. He has earned the doctor of sacred theology from the Universitas Pontificia Salesiana, Rome, and the doctor of philosophy and the doctor of divinity from the University of London. His wide-ranging scholarship includes the history of mission in Asia; liberation, inculturation and interreligious dialogue, eschatology, and the theology of icon in Orthodox theology.


Peter Vethanayagamony

Professor Modern Church History


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