The Ecclesiological Investigations Network’s 2013 International Gathering will meet in Serbia, at a pertinent time when the presumed 1700th anniversary of the Edict of Milan will be marked. This was a historical moment that embraces and epitomizes so many issues, challenges and tensions concerning where the peoples and faiths of the world dwell in common, and what divides them. This will therefore take forward many of the conversations and collaborations begun last year at the Assisi 2012 gathering.

The conference will explore a wide range of issues and historical as well as pertinent questions concerning religion, authority and the state, east-west relations, inter-faith and ecumenical questions. Issues of secularising forces and developments, as well as considerations of post- and neo-secular societies will also feature. Processes and avenues of dialogue will feature prominently throughout.

• We welcome and invite submissions for short paper presentations (20 minutes duration) on the following themes and issues in particular, although the organizing committee are happy to consider other topics as well:

• Faith communities vis-a-vis the wider social, cultural and political contexts in which they live; religious freedom, religion and pluralist societies; church and state; church governance and civil governance; Religion, Authority and the State after 9/11;

• Christianity East and West; Orthodox Ecclesiologies; Political Theology – especially in the 21st Century; Public Theology – especially in the 21st Century; origins and present-day realities of non-conformism; dissent, religious and secular;

• Islamic-State relations; Muslims minority and majority communities; Israel and the Palestine: boundaries of faith and identity; religion and ‘peace'; religion and world affairs; religion, race, ethnicity and the state;

• Feminist and womanist perceptions of religious and secular authority and power; religion and post-colonialism; religion and neo-colonialism and neo-imperialism; fundamentalism in the service of the state; atheistic fundamentalism; religion in the Soviet Union; perceptions of embodiment – personal, corporate, societal, religious;

• Paganization of Christianity; Church teaching Authority – is there an ecumenical future?; Ecumenical Bodies and the Temptations of Empire; Christendom revisited; world-renouncing ecclesiologies throughout history and today'; secularization revisited; State-enforced secularism; pivotal figures in religion-state relations; the cold war and faith communities;

• Church and State in the main ecumenical dialogues; World Council of Churches discourse and documents on religion, authority and the state, on justice and peace, on thematic discussions of faith and order pertinent to the conference theme;

• Catholic Social Thought on Church and State, International Relations, Religious Freedom and Pluralistic Societies; Vatican II’s Declaration on Religious Freedom and pastoral constitution on the Church in the Modern World;

• Tracks of diplomacy; dialogue between faith communities and the wider society; conflict resolution and religion – resources, obstacles, methods and initiatives;

• We invite proposals for short paper sessions. Papers will be 20 minutes in duration. Group and joint proposals, as well as proposals for sessions and themes are welcome (max 3 papers per session). Papers, posters and presentations will be acceptable in English, French, German, Italian and Spanish.

Instructions for submitting your proposal:

• Please submit your proposal via this online form

• Please do not submit proposals by email as they cannot be accepted this way.

• Complete the title of your paper in the space provided online and then paste into the main body of the online form an abstract of no more than 300 words, followed by a short biographical summary of no more than 200 words. Proposals that exceed the word limit will not be accepted or considered.

• Participants will be notified about acceptance of papers within four weeks of submission. Email us if you have not heard by this time.

• Obviously an acceptance of a paper proposal does not guarantee participation which is dependent upon completion of registration and payment being submitted!

The conference venue has a limited number of spaces both in terms of its meeting rooms and accommodation.

For the time being, we will still consider additional paper proposals on a case by case basis provided there remains capacity in the meeting rooms.

Because we need to finalise the program for concurrent paper sessions we urge those interested to submit their proposals as soon as possible and to submit payment for registration within two weeks  of being notified of paper acceptance.

We will need to consider allocating space to other proposals if registration and payment is not submitted promptly.

Please also be aware that participants still submitting proposals may have to find additional accommodation once all hotel rooms are already booked.

For all these important reasons, we encourage you to submit your proposal and registration payment as soon as possible to facilitate the program scheduling. Thank you!