The First
The Monthly Newsletter of Catholic Theological Ethics in the World Church
January 2021
Featured Forum Articles
African Forum: "COVID-19: Reflecting on the Ethical Ramifications of Flattening the Curve" - Teresia Hinga

European Forum: "Corona and the Arrogance of the West"
- Gregor Buss

North American Forum: "#2021: Vaccines in a Year of Favor"
- Mary M. Doyle Roche
Asian and Oceanic Forum: "Persistence and Hope in a Chilly and Harsh Winter"
- Mary Mee-Yin Yuen

Latin American and Caribbean Forum: "La política democrática en Fratelli Tutti"
- Aníbal Torres

Junior Scholars Forum: "Sierra Leonean Government Must Stop Killing Defenseless Prisoners" - Henry Omeike
Virtual Tables Report
African Virtual Table

Toussaint Kafarhire, the Chair of the African Region of CTEWC, has been hosting the African VT since May 20th.  From the outset they decided to work on a book together, as Toussaint writes, “to bring our moral voice to the conversation on Africa and the COVID-19 global health crisis. Actually, it’s a leadership crisis, as we have a sense of a broken trust between political authorities, decision makers, and the communities.” Each time they met, they discussed two to three papers.

The book will be called, Leadership in Africa: Beyond the COVID-19 Health Crisis and will be edited by Toussaint and Odomaro Mubangizi. Besides the editors, other contributors include: Bridgita Mwawasi, Elisabeth Nduku, Emmanuel Bueya, Evelyn Mayanja, John Bosco Kamoga, Jude Likori, Kiragu Wachera, Laurenti Magesa, Simon Mary Aihiokai, Sr. Anthonia B. Ojo, Sr. Anne Celestine Achieng, Sr. Bridgita Mwawasi, Stan Chu Ilo, Sr. Veronica Rop, Sr. Wilhelmina Tunu. Essays are due to the editors on January 20th.
Now that they are on the final drafting, they decided to host on December 10 Stan Chu Ilo so that he could present his newly published book,Someone Beautiful to God: Finding the Light of Faith in a Wounded World, from Paulist Press.
In Memoriam
Eberhard Schockenhoff

One of Germany's most important moral theologians, Eberhard Schockenhoff, died on Saturday, July 18, 2020, at the age of 67, due to an accident in his own apartment.

Since 1990 Schockenhoff was professor for moral theology, the first four years in Regensburg and since 1994 in Freiburg.
He has researched questions of fundamental moral theology as well as various areas of applied ethics. His numerous publications have always attracted a great deal of attention, and many have been translated into different languages.
His positions, in particular on questions of medical ethics and Catholic sexual morality, testified to his keen understanding and analytical skills. His theological research was shaped by a visionary force.

In addition to his university activities, he was active in various ethics committees. His long participation in the German Ethics Council is worth mentioning. Eberhard Schockenhoff's premature and sudden death deprives moral theology of a prominent and promising voice. R.I.P.
Johannes Reiter

The German moral theologian Johannes Reiter (born 1944) died on December 28, 2020. From 1984 to 2009 he was professor of moral theology at the University of Mainz. He was a member of the International Theological Commission and the Pontifical Academy for Life. His competence extended from the history of moral theology to the relationship between Christology and moral theology in the question of bioethics, an area in which he has shaped the discussion in church and society very strongly over the past decades. R.I.P.

- Submitted by Antonio Autiero
Asian Regional Report
New Documentary

A new film series presents the work and contribution of Chinese Catholic religious sisters in mainland China. It covers a wide range of topics vital to the life of the Chinese Catholic Church. The most recent installment, translated by CTEWC member Simeiqi He, features Sr. Rong Lina and her religious community, the Missionary Sisters of Our Lady of Hope, a diocesan religious order under the Roman Catholic Diocese of Xianxian in Hebei, China. Sr. Rong is the director of the Women’s Theological Association in China. She is the first Chinese Catholic in mainland China with a doctorate in biblical studies (Old Testament). She obtained her doctoral degree at the Catholic University of America.
European Regional Report

Jaime Tatay-Nieto, "Sustainability, the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, and the Catholic Church’s Ecological Turn." Religions (Open Access), 25 September 2020.

„Liebe und tu, was du willst? Die „Pillenenzyklika“ Humanae vitae von 1968 und ihre Folgen (Veröffentlichungen der Kommission für Zeitgeschichte, Reihe C: Themen der Kirchlichen Zeitgeschichte 3) edited by Birgit Aschmann and Wilhelm Damberg.

The book offers a series of analyses on the far-reaching consequences and implications of Humanae vitae: How did the momentous decision of Paul VI come about? How did the Catholics react? And to what extent does this event represent a turning point in the history of Catholic Church? Intensive research in long-closed archives is only now allowing a fuller picture of this period to emerge.

"Yearbook for Christian Social Sciences." Heimbach-Steins, Marianne (Hg.), Jahrbuch für Christliche Sozialwissenschaften, Bd. 61 (2020): Postkoloniale Theorien und Sozialethik. Available for the first time Open Access.

For vacancies at KU Leuven and the University of Bonn, see below.
Latin American-Caribbean Regional Report

ZACHARIAS, Ronaldo. Sem elas, eles não vivem mais: sacerdócio, vida consagrada e dependência sexual on-line. In: Revista Eclesiástica Brasileira 80/317 (2020): 519-545.

TRASFERETTI, José Antonio; MILLEN, Maria Inês de Castro; ZACHARIAS, Ronaldo (Orgs.). Formação: desafios morais 2. São Paulo: Paulus, 2020.

ZACHARIAS, Ronaldo. Fragilidade vocacional e institucional. Da crise de credibilidade à fidelidade na fragilidade. In: TRASFERETTI, José Antonio; MILLEN, Maria Inês de Castro; ZACHARIAS, Ronaldo (Orgs.). Formação: desafios morais 2. São Paulo: Paulus, 2020, p. 73-102.

Aníbal Torres publicó el artículo "Juan Carlos Scannone, maestro del discernimiento de lo realmente posible en política", en revista Medellín, Vol. XLVI, N.° 178 Número Extraordinario (2020) Bogotá - Colombia ISSN: 0121-4977. Págs. 501-532.

El 15 de diciembre fue la presentación del libro Bioética. Una perspectiva desde América Latina, editado por Edwin Vásquez Ghersi, SJ y Miguel Polo Santillán y publicado por la Universidad Antonio Ruiz de Montoya de Lima, El libro cuenta con 14 colaboradores de varios países de América Latina y 16 capítulos, y aborda los principales temas de la bioética como eutanasia, estatuto del embrión humano, comités de ética asistencial, justicia en salud, entre otros.


Desde Argentina, Emilce Cuda nos relata una breve reseña de las actividades realizadas en 2020. Con éxito se cumplió la Etapa I del proyecto CLACSO "El futuro del trabajo y cuidado de la casa común", con un equipo interdisciplinario e interreligioso de 150 investigadores de distintos países de América Latina y el Caribe, que reunió académicos, líderes sociales y agentes de gobierno para pensar la transición justa y ecológica de acuerdo a Laudato Si. Esto constituye un aporte a la CTEWC ya que muchos de los eticistas de la red -aquellos vinculados a la ética teológica social-, forman parte del mismo. El tema del seminario final, como resultado de varios encuentros, fue: "La propiedad absoluta en cuestión: la apropiación, la toma y el saqueo". Los videos de todas las actividades pueden verse en el canal youtube del Grupo de Trabajo. Se han publicado dos boletines CLACSO con aportes de los integrantes: Boletin N1, Boletin N2. También nos cuenta que como eticista social es parte del equipo internacional del Programa The Future of Work., Labor after Laudato Si, de la ICMC (Vaticano-OIT), y ha participado en la confección del informe sobre el estado de la cuestión y ha presentado la situación económica y social de los trabajadores en América Latina y el Caribe.
North American Regional Report

This book argues for a historically and politically mediated Catholic social ethics to replace a natural law ethics. The theoretical reflections of the book are carried out by the practical social-ethical studies: the politicization of individual human rights is examined in the contexts of migration, religious freedom, and criminal justice. The book concludes with a discussion of the relationship of political theology and political ethics and its social-ethical implications for the further development of a Critical Political Ethics.

Todd Salzman and Michael Lawler, Introduction to Catholic Theological Ethics: Foundations and Applications, Orbis Books, 2019.

In this book, the authors build upon their own synthesis of virtue and theological ethics to provide a foundational text for undergraduate courses in theological ethics. Drawing from sources including Catholic social teaching and the insights of past and present Catholic theologians, they introduce and then apply their ethical method to such topics as ecology, economics, hookup culture, and liberation theology.

Todd Salzman and Michael Lawler, Pope Francis and the Transformation of Healthcare Ethics, Georgetown University Press, forthcoming 2021.

This extended critical commentary on the USCCB's 2018 Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services finds the ERD insufficient in reflecting the ecclesial and methodological transformations of the Catholic Church in recent decades. Drawing on the papacy of Pope Francis, Salzman and Lawler propose new ways forward for US Catholic health care ethics, promoting human dignity as the guiding principle and emphasizing the virtues of mercy and care to guide patients and health care professionals in their discerned conscientious health care decisions.

For job vacancies in the United States, see below.
Job Postings
KU Leuven

The Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies at the Catholic University Leuven has opened a full-time vacancy for a junior or senior academic staff member in the following field: Theological Ethics with a specialization in Sexual & Family Ethics and/or Environmental Ethics (and expertise in fundamental moral theology).

For general information, see the job notice. For any further information, contact

University of Bonn

The Faculty of Catholic Theology of the University of BONN is looking to fill a W1 Assistant Professorship (tenure track to W2) for Christian Social Ethics with focus on sustainable development. For information about this position, please see this attachment.

Jesuit School of Theology, Santa Clara University

The Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University invites applications for an assistant-rank position in Theological Ethics to begin Fall 2021. Areas of sub-specialization are open, but should complement existing faculty strengths and may include: political/geopolitical theologies; liberation theologies; race/racial justice; postcolonial studies; ecological ethics; ethics of migration; economic or business ethics; war and peace; human rights; or gender/sexual justice. For a job description, please see this attachment. For further information or questions, please contact Lisa Fullam at, or Teresa Bowes, Senior Administrative Assistant to the Dean,, (510) 549-5013.

University of Dayton

The Department of Religious Studies at the University of Dayton seeks applications for the applications for the Mary Ann Spearin Endowed Chair in Catholic Theology. This position provides expertise in the area of US Catholicism, with a particular grasp of how the unique American experience shapes Catholicism in the US and to demonstrate through scholarship the intellectual focus of the department’s doctoral program. More information about this position is available here.

Xavier University, Cincinnati

The Department of Theology at Xavier University invites applications for a non-tenure-track, yearly-renewable Teaching Professor of Christian Theology, starting in Fall 2021. They seek specializations in one or more of the following areas: Mujerista Theology, Womanist Theology, Christian Spiritualities. Information about this position and application are available here.