Lecture: “Disability and Early Christian Ministry”

December 3, 2019 @ 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm America/Los Angeles Timezone
McCune Conference Room
HSSB 6020
Christine M. Thomas

Dominika Kurek-Chomycz, Senior Lecturer, Liverpool Hope University; Outgoing President, European Association of Biblical Studies

“Disability and Early Christian Ministry: ‘For It Is Not a Blemish of the Body That Can Defile Him’”

As in the case of illness and disability more generally, early Christian writings display a variety of approaches to ministry and bodily impairments, with more explicit prescripts coming mainly from later, composite documents. In this lecture I discuss select sources, focusing on how they attest to the variety of criteria and expectations regarding ecclesiastical office holders in the early church, and to how those with bodily impairments in leadership positions would have been perceived. Applying the lens of disability studies to the question of early Christian ministry not only sheds light on our understanding of the developments in early Christianity, but also complicates further the different models used by contemporary disability theorists.

Sponsored by the Virgil Cordano OFM Endowed Chair in Catholic Studies