02. Mission Studies

 One hears today about combat missions, space missions and also "mission statements" for organisations.  However, the sort of mission I am referring to derives from the Latin term for "sending" or "being sent."  Thus one answers a call (vocation) and is sent (on mission) for a purpose - in the case of Christian missionaries, to witness to (God's) love in word and the way we live.

These days Mission Studies or Missiology is also closely linked with Applied Anthropology.  This is an important aspect of the work of Divine Word Missionaries following in the "Anthropos" tradition.

Mission today involves both proclamation and dialogue. A lot of attention these days is on "Prophetic Dialogue" and "Inter-cultural Dialogue". 

Prophetic dialogue is like what one well-known missiologist (Bosch) called "bold humility" - a boldness in proclamation along with a respect for other's opinions and the for what God's Spirit has accomplished long before the missionary's arrival. 

Inter-cultural Dialogue brings out the aspect of mission as an encounter between peoples, whether they be individuals or communities.  Just as the Divine Word came and "pitched tent among us" so we find our home among the people to whom we are sent.

For some of my missiological reflections, see the "Writings" page, for example my paper "Encountering Difference: Interculturality and Contextual Theology, in Verbum SVD 54 (2013) 75-89.  You might also view the film Enga Mass ( and Word Bearing Fruit (http::// (Video link below)