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What Matters Most
Miroslav Volf suggests: "The most important political question of our time is the one we tend not to think is political at all. Who are we—you, I, and the nations to which we belong? What kind of human beings and what kind of nation should we aspire to become?"
What does it mean to be a Christian in a world where so many of our systems are dehumanizing? What duties are incumbent upon us as Christians, as humans? How can we learn and share a global flourishing that respects and honors all?
As Christians around the world heard these words spoken on Ash Wednesday this past week, as an ashen oil was smudged to their brows, the world watched on in horror and grief over the brutality and aggression against Ukraine. In a swift movement of solidarity, we're all still are left with difficult and enduring questions. Why this war? What is at stake? How did we get here and what can we do? How can we stop this in a way that might hang on to a hope for peace?
But as finite, limited beings brought forth from dust, we quickly run to the end of our ability to explain. And like so many problems in our world, we're just left with further questions: What does it mean to be a Christian in a world where so many of our systems are dehumanizing? What duties are incumbent upon us as Christians, as humans? How can we learn and share a global flourishing that respects and honors all?
In this week's episode, Matt Croasmun interviews Fernando Segovia, the Oberlin Graduate Professor of New Testament and Early Christianity at Vanderbilt Divinity School. He is the author of Decolonizing Biblical Studies: A View from the Margins. And as a Cuban American theologian and biblical scholar, he is devoted in elevating voices outside of the dominant Western culture, and advocating for a a truly global Christianity one that is relevant to lived realities across the world. In this conversation, he reflects on the importance of learning about Christianity as a set of global and multidimensional traditions. He discusses the duties of Christians to critique human culture and society, including their own; he suggests that utopian visions can and do inform the moral and spiritual imagination in our imperfect world, but must avoid naïveté and invite constant critique and correction.
About Fernando Segovia
Fernando F. Segovia is Oberlin Graduate Professor of New Testament and Early Christianity. His teaching and research encompass Early Christian Origins, Theological Studies, and Cultural Studies. He is author of Decolonizing Biblical Studies: A View from the Margins. As a biblical critic, his interests include: Johannine Studies; method and theory; ideological criticism; the history of the discipline and its construction of early Christian antiquity. As a theologian, his interests include: non-Western Christian theologies, especially from Latin American and the Caribbean; and minority Christian theologies in the West, especially from U.S. Hispanic Americans. As a cultural critic, his interests include: postcolonial studies; minority studies; Diaspora studies. Professor Segovia has served on the editorial boards of a variety of academic journals, has worked as consultant for foundations and publishing houses, and has lectured widely both nationally and internationally. He is also a past president of the Academy of Catholic Hispanic Theologians in the United States.
- This podcast featured biblical scholars Fernando Segovia and Matthew Croasmun
- Edited and Produced by Evan Rosa
- Hosted by Evan Rosa
- Production Assistance by Martin Chan
- A Production of the Yale Center for Faith & Culture at Yale Divinity School https://faith.yale.edu/about
- Support For the Life of the World podcast by giving to the Yale Center for Faith & Culture: https://faith.yale.edu/give