Call for Papers


“On Nations and the Churches:
Ecumenical Responses to Nationalisms and Migration.”

Ludwigshafen, 23-28 August 2018

Churches in Europe have a specific history of experiences with regard to relationships to their respective nations. While churches agree that the Christian faith has a transnational character, the question to what extent this character should also be realized in a collective and national sense of interpreting and shaping community life is always present. In 20th century Europe, related theological debates took place against the backdrop of political realities such as colonialism, the world wars, fascist regimes, and Communism. After World War II, the establishment of the WCC demonstrated a growing critical attitude, particularly in Western European churches, towards various forms of nationalism. The transformation movements in Europe after 1989 and the renewed convergence of East and West, however, revived theological discussions on the legitimacy of a strong link between Church and nation. These questions also came to relate directly to experiences of mass migration, the suffering of violence in war, and state oppression, as well as with current uncertainties due to felt threats of the dissolution of supposed cultural homogeneity. Can “nation” be understood, on the background of these different experiences, as part of the theology of creation – as a space of life given and to be shaped in a Christian manner? Is there a way for nationalism and current migration experiences to converge? Do churches have something specific to say on this situation in an ecumenical perspective? These questions are at the heart of our consultation.

We invite you to prepare a paper or poster related to the conference theme or any other ecumenical topic for a presentation of max. 20 minutes. We also welcome proposals for jointly organized sessions (90 minutes) on a particular theme or project. Please send an abstract/proposal of approximately 300 words before 1 April 2018 to You will be notified of acceptance or refusal before 15 April 2018.

As we want to challenge particularly junior scholars to be involved, ReMA/PhD students who present a paper can participate at the consultation at a reduced price.


Click here for a pdf version of the call for papers.