History of Christianity in East Asia

Date(s) - 10/21/2017
9:00 am - 1:45 pm

Northway Christian Church


History of Christianity in East Asia
Eleventh W.A. Welsh Seminar
Saturday, October 21, 9:00 a.m. to 1:45 p.m.
Northway Christian Church, Dallas
Timothy Lee, Associate Professor of the History of Christianity and Director of Asian (Korean) Church Studies, Brite Divinity School, Fort Worth, TX

From the arrival of Nestorian missionaries in China in 635, to the systematic persecution of Japanese Christians in the seventeenth century, to the emergence of a 700,000-member, the-world’s-largest, congregation in South Korea in the late twentieth century, Christianity has a long—at times conflicted, and always fascinating—history in East Asia. Focusing on China, Korea, and Japan, the course explores how the faith was disseminated in the continent; interacted with socio-political forces, including colonialism and nationalism; conflicted with or accommodated native religions, such as Buddhism, Confucianism, and Shamanism; and became indigenized. Along the way, the course discusses missionaries such as Matteo Ricci, Horace Underwood, and Minnie Vautrin; East Asian Christians such as Watchman Nee, Uchimura Kanzo, and Columba Kang; and topics such as the Hidden Christians of Japan, coalescence of nationalism and Evangelicalism in Korea, and tension between the Chinese Communist Party and Christians.

Tim Lee is Associate Professor of the History of Christianity at Brite Divinity School and Director of Brite’s Asian (Korean) Church Studies. He earned his PhD in the History of Christianity at the University of Chicago Divinity School. He teaches introductory courses in Christian History and more specialized ones on Christian missions and Christian history in Asia and Asian America. His current research focuses on the history of Christianity in Korea, about which he has published a number of works, including a book, Born Again: Evangelicalism in Korea (2010) and a coedited volume, Christianity in Korea (2006); he has also contributed a book chapter on East Asia in Introducing World Christianity, ed. Charles E. Farhadian (2012). Before coming to Brite in 2002, he had taught at the University of Chicago and the University of California at Los Angeles.