April 17th–18th “Neo-Calvinism and World Christianity”
A Symposium

It is widely acknowledged that the world in which the Christian Church now finds itself is greatly changed from that from the late 19th century when Abraham Kuyper sought to renew the Calvinist understanding of Christian faith. The Europe to which he belonged is now, to a great extent post-Christian. Mainstream churches are declining in the America that heard his famous Stone Lectures. Christianity’s pulse is beating most strongly in Asia and Africa which, for Kuyper and his times, were geographically and politically peripheral. Does the Neo-Calvinist vision that Kuyper so powerfully articulated still have a vital message of the new world of Christianity, and if so, what is it? This purpose of this symposium is to address this question critically in the company of speakers with a wide knowledge of both the prospects and problems of Christian mission in the modern world.

Wednesday April 17

2:00–4:30pm Cooper Conference Room, Erdman Hall
2-3pm Mark Gornik (Director, City Seminary New York) 35-40 minute talk with 20-25 minutes discussion

3-3:30pm Coffee break

3:30-4:30pm Stefaan Paas, (J.H. Bavinck Professor for Church Planting and Church Renewal, VU Amsterdam), 35-40 minute talk with 20-25 minutes discussion

Dinner     Mackay Campus Center 5:30-6:30pm

7:00pm Gambrell Room, Scheide Hall
Martin Tel, (Director of Music, Princeton Theological Seminary)
'Sing a New Song: Renewing the Psalter for worship'
An interactive introduction to Psalms for All Seasons: a complete psalter for worship(2012)

Thursday April 18

9am-12 noon Cooper Conference Room, Erdman Hall
9:00-9:45am Daniel Bourdanné (General Secretary, International Fellowship of Evangelical Students) 35-40 minute talk with 5-10 minutes for questions
9:45-10:30am Darrell Guder, (Henry Winters Luce Professor of Missional and Ecumenical Theology, PTS), 35-40 minute talk with 5-10 minutes for questions

10:30-11:00am Coffee break

11am-12 noon Panel discussion opening with a 10-minute conversations starter by Al Barth (Redeemer Church NYC) and Fr. Jamal Daibes (Mackay Professor of World Christianity, PTS)

General discussion with Drs Gornik, Paas, Bourdanne, and Guder

Close and lunch

No registration required: Everyone welcome


Daniel Bourdanné is General Secretary of International Fellowship of Evangelical Students. He was born in Chad, and studied in Chad, Cameroon, Togo, Côte d’Ivoire and France. He has a PhD from the University of Abidjan in animal ecology. From 1990 until his appointment as General Secretary in 2007, he served IFES in Francophone Africa, a region encompassing 20 French-speaking countries, and he has served on the boards of a number of Christian organizations in Africa, and led a number of significant training initiatives. These include the ‘Forum de Théologie pour l’Eglise’ designed to bring theological academics and local churches together, the ‘Centre Africain du Christianisme Contemporain’ – an IFES Leadership Training Centre for Francophone Africa, and the ‘Tyranus’ biblical preaching initiative.

Mark Gornik is Director of City Seminary of New York. He has spent the last 25 years of his life as a pastor, community developer and researcher in African churches in New York City and beyond. He is the author of To Live in Peace: Biblical Faith and the Changing Inner City, based on his experience in Sandtown, Baltimore.

Stefan Paas completed a PhD in Old Testament Studies in 1998, and thereafter became became a consultant for evangelism in the Christian Reformed Churches in the Netherlands. He became a lecturer in missiology for the Theological University of the Free Reformed Churches in the Netherlands in 2009. In 2010 he took the J.H. Bavinck Chair for Church Planting and Church Renewal at the VU University Amsterdam. Currently he divides his time between these two jobs. He is also involved in the City to City Europe network of Redeemer Presbyterian Church (NYC).

Darrell Guder is Henry Winters Luce Professor of Missional and Ecumenical Theology at Princeton Theological Seminary. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Hamburg, and served as a student outreach pastor and as a faculty member of the Karlshohe College in the German Lutheran Church. He has served as secretary-treasurer of the American Society of Missiology (ASM) and was president of the ASM from 2007–2008. His publications include The Continuing Conversion of the Church: Evangelization as the Heart of Ministry (2000) Missional Church: A Vision for the Sending of the Church in North America, editor. (1998)