Biography & Schouver Chair
Dr. Uzukwu's research interests are in the areas of liturgy-sacraments, ritual studies, ecclesiology, missiology, and contextual theology, with particular focus on continental Africa and Africa in the diaspora. His research on the viability for Christian theology of the West African insight into God-Christ-Spirit, an interface between African Traditional Religion and various versions of Christianity, was published 2012: God, Spirit, and Human Wholeness: Appropriating Faith and Culture in West African Style.
His most recent research project focuses on ritology: its performative dimensions, its uses and abuses in the wars that plague the African continent - especially ritual technology in the initiation of child soldiers (2008); Re-thinking God from the perspective of African Traditional Religions to eschew violence (2005-2012); Re-thinking with the the Church-Family-of-God rooted in the Trinitarian Family: Church Family of God - Africa's Treasure, Reinventing Christianity and the World (Ongoing)
Dr. Uzukwu is the Editor of the Bulletin of Ecumenical Theology, a journal published by the Ecumenical Association of Nigerian Theologians. The journal that has 24 volumes publishes articles on all aspects of interface between Church and society, Church and world, Church and religions, Church and unity.
Father Uzukwu is the first holder of the Rev. Pierre Schouver C.S.Sp. Endowed Chair in Mission, in Duquesne University. The offer of the Chair is in recognition of his scholarship.
The focus of the Chair is research in Mission, Faith and Cultures, and the interface between Duquesne's Mission and Identity and development in Catholic theology and intellectual tradition. The Inaugural Symposium was held March 14 2012, bringing together 11 experts in missiology across the USA, including Duquesne.
List of Presentations:
1. Mission Today: Where and Why - Presenters A
2. Mission Today: Where and Why - Presenters B
3. Mission Today: Where and Why - Presenters C
4. Mission Today: Where and Why - Presenters D
5. Mission Today: Where and Why - Panel Discussion with Presenters A, B, C, and D
EducationTh.D., Theology, St Michael's College, University Toronto, 1979
M.Th., Theology, St Michael's College, University Toronto, 1976
B.D., Theology, Urban University, Rome, 1972
Courses, Scholarship & Presentations
Father Uzukwu has taught graduate and undergraduate courses at Duquesne and other universities, including seminaries and universities in Nigeria, France, Congo, India, and Ireland.
- Theo 531: Ecclesiology (Spring 2012) - examines the church-assembly as mystery revealed in the mystery of the trinity; tracing its story from New Testament origins through subsequent historical-theological developments; particularly attentive to Vatican II and post-Vatican II perspectives
- IHP-145-02: Classical and Contemporary Theology (Fall 2011 & Spring 2012) that examines sources of theology, key narratives of classical theology including Augustine's Confessions; and samples of contemporary theology as developed in Asia, Africa & the Americas.
- UCOR-143-03: Global and Cultural Perspectives (Fall 2011) that examines the religious insights of peoples and groups in the contemporary world: Native American, Mexican, African religions; Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, Zoroastrianism, Jainism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam - how would living and practicing these religions make humans better people.
God, Spirit and Human Wholeness (2011)
God, Spirit and Human Wholeness,: Appropriating Faith and Culture in West African
Style (Wipf and Stock: 2012).
This book argues that the Holy Spirit provides access to relationship with and reflection on the Triune God; that in West Africa, Christians approach the Triune God in a way that challenges the Jewish-Christian memory.
Liturgy, Truly Christian Truly African (Eldoret: Gaba Publications, 1982);
Worship as Body Language. Introduction to Christian Worship: an African Orientation (Collegeville, Minnesota, Liturgical Press, 1997).
Father Uzukwu details how patterns of African ritual assemblies and sacred narratives
have merged with Jewish, Gospel, and early Church traditions to create living Christian
communities and liturgies. This book throws new light on liturgical action and theology
using a socio-historical method. It suggests the use of more transition rituals, and
it provides samples of emergent African Christian liturgies that emphasize intense
community participation with appropriate gestures.
Father Uzukwu details how patterns of African ritual assemblies and sacred narratives have merged with Jewish, Gospel, and early Church traditions to create living Christian communities and liturgies. This book throws new light on liturgical action and theology using a socio-historical method. It suggests the use of more transition rituals, and it provides samples of emergent African Christian liturgies that emphasize intense community participation with appropriate gestures.
A Listening Church: Autonomy and Communion in African Churches (Maryknoll, New York, Orbis, 1996).
Re-Evaluating God-Talk from an African Perspective, in Thinking the Divine in Interreligious Encounter, Currents of Encounter, vol. 44, Edited by Norbert Hintersteiner. In Collaboration with Francois Bousquet. 2012, 55-71.
Body and Belief: Exploration in African Ritology - the Magic of Body Language, Jaarboek voor liturgie-onderzoek 24 (2008):199-218;
Afrikas Zeichen der Zeit, in Das Zweite Vatikanische Konzil und die Zeichen der Zeit heute (ed. Peter Hunermann; Freiburg / Basel/ Vienna: Herder, 2006), 207-225.
West African Religious Universe Engaging the Jewish Christian Universe: Entertaining Views About God, in Faithful Witnesses - Glimpses of the Kingdom. Essays in Honour of M. Anthony Geoghegan cssp and Vincent MacNamara sps (ed. Joe Egan & Brendan McConvery; Dublin: Department of Mission Theology and Cultures, Milltown Institute of Theology and Philosophy, 2005), 158-171;
La Liturgie et les rites sacramentels dans l'Eglise Africaine, in L'avenir de l'Activite missionnaire 'Ad Gentes' Perspectives pour le XX1eme Siecle. Actes du Congres International de Missiologie Tertio Millennio (Kinshasa : 11-17 juillet 2004), (ed. Mgr Tharcisse T. Tshibangu; Kinshasa : Mediaspaul, 2005),189-196.
Bible and Christian Worship in Africa. African Christianity and the Labour of Contextualization, Chakana 1 (2004): 7-32.
L'inculturation et l'enseignement de la Theologie: un point de vue africain, in La responsabilite des theologiens: Melanges offerts a Joseph Dore (ed. Francois Bousquet et al.; Paris : Desclee, 2002), 265-272.
Food and Drink in Africa and the Christian Eucharist: An Inquiry into the Use of African Symbols in the Eucharistic Celebration, Bulletin of African Theology (BAT) II / 4 (1980):171-187; African Ecclesial Review 22 (1980): 370-385, 398.
Dr Uzukwu is frequently invited to lecture, present papers, give workshops and participate in conferences in Europe, Africa, Asia, and USA.
Uzukwu delivered the only paper that is slated for discussion in the Black Catholic Theology Consultation for the June 2012 Convention of the Catholic Theological Society of America: "The Sacramental Imagination--African Appropriation of Catholicism Before and After Vatican II.""Mystical Experience: Pertinence of the West African Religious World" (Bangalore, India, 2011; soon to be published);
Three-Credit Course on "Grace and Pneumatology" Sanathana Seminary, Kerela India (June 2011);
Moderated the Chapter of Spiritans in Ethiopia (June 2011);
The Leuven Encounter in Systematic Theology conference (October 2011) where he delivered a paper "Traditioning and the Emerging Shape of the Local Church: A Nigerian Example" (publication on course in conference proceedings)
Approaches to Black Theology (University of Notre Dame, Spring 2009; & Institute of Black Catholic Studies, Xavier University New Orleans, Summer 2008)
Christian Mission and Religious Pluralism (Milltown Institute, Dublin, Ireland, 2008)
Christian Liturgy and the Religions (Insitute of Liturgical Studies, Maynooth, Ireland; 2007)