December 4 and 5, 2017, on the occasion of the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation (1517-2017), the Evangelical Church of Vietnam (North) held a roundtable Protestant Faith in the World and Vietnam at Hanoi Bible College.
The goal of this Roundtable was to create a forum for academic discussion between professors and scholars from government organizations and the pastors, professors, and scholars from evangelical institutions inside and outside Vietnam to increase awareness about the history and development of the Evangelical faith in the world and Vietnam. In addition, the roundtable also considered objective data about the relationship between the evangelical faith and economics, politics, culture, society, and freedom, in order to find some positive directions for evangelicals to continue to develop into the future.
In attendance at the Roundtable were pastors, professors, and representatives of the Evangelical Church of Vietnam (North), researchers from government offices and institutes of religious research, including the Government Committee for Religious Affairs, the Insitute for Religious Studies, the National Academy for Politics, the Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences, the University of Social Sciences and Humanities and scholars from Europe, North America, Southeast Asia, several delegates from embassies in Hanoi, along with many Christians from evangelical churches from inside and outside of Vietnam.
The Roundtable incuded 17 presentations in four panels: Protestant Reformation & Establishment Process, Protestant presence in the world today- at 500-year milestone: a comparative study, History of Protestant faith in Vietnam, and Protestant faith and contribution to the Vietnamese Society. Hanoi Bible College professors spent significant time researching in order to make a positive contribution to this academic exchange. In particular, Daniel Owens, Nguyen Thanh An, and Jon Hoglund each presented papers, and Nguyen Kim Son served as the master of ceremonies for the duration of the roundtable.
Through this roundtable, evangelical scholars from outside and inside Vietnam were able to understand more clearly about the perspective, direction, and policies of the Party and the Vietnamese government in relationship to evangelicals globally and in Vietnam. Professors and scholars of religion and belief from government intitutions also had the opportunity to understand more clearly about the evangelical faith and the contributions of evangelicals to economics, politics, culture, and society around the world and in Vietnam.
The Roundtable opened a new direction in relationships between scholars from government insitutions in Vietnam and evangelical institutions from within and without Vietnam. It is expected that this roundtable is the first step for the evangelical community in Vietnam to be more widely understood in Vietnamese society in particular and in the international community in general.
Below are some photographs from the academic program.