Christian Studies In An Interdisciplinary Context

Christian studies in China are conducted currently in the interdisciplinary environment and context of academia; thus, its contact with and impact on other academic fields should be recognized. In his paper 'Christian Studies and its Significance for Chinese Academia', He Guang Hu shows convincingly that recent Christian studies have enriched Chinese academia in three particular areas: in encouraging critical thinking; in distinguishing the transcendental from the mundane; in providing a holistic and three-dimensional approach as well as a sense of the 'holy' to the study of humanities.26 In a similar article, 'The Significance of Christian Studies for Contemporary Chinese Universities', He Guang Hu suggests that Christianity, being the 'spiritual core' (jin sheng he xin) of western civilization, could have a significant contribution to make to the 'quality education' (su zhijiao yu) of Chinese universities.27 Zhang Qing Xiong of the Christian Study Center of Shanghai's Fudan University regards the cultivation of the student's 'humanist spirit' (ren wen jin sheng) and 'ultimate concern' (zhongji guan huai) as the basic principles of Christian studies in the university.28

Fudan University in Shanghai, which established a Christian Study Center in 1996 in the Philosophy Department, was authorized by the State Administration for Religious Affairs (SARA) of China as early as 1986 to run training courses for its senior officials (party cadres).29 In Beijing, Fudan and a couple of other universities, Christian studies have in fact gone beyond interdisciplinary concerns within the university itself. Since 2001 they have even been providing further education for the 'Three-Self as well as the 'house' and other Chinese churches. While Fudan University is doing this in cooperation with the official church of the Shanghai area, others, like Beijing and Ren Min Universities, are conducting their postgraduate courses for Christian pastors and lay

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