Myoung-ho Sin Awarded 2020 Townes Fellowship

CTNS is pleased to announce that Myoung-Ho Sin has been selected as the Charles H. Townes Fellow in Theology and Science for 2020. Myoung came to the GTU in 2016 with a background in Economic Engineering, Photonics and Digital Image Processing, a Masters in Divinity and a Masters in Early Reformation Theology from Honam Theological University and Seminary, Seoul, South Korea. He passed his GTU Oral Comps with distinction in 2019, and is currently writing his dissertation.

Myoung’s dissertation begins by rebutting the challenge from Lynn White Jr. that “the anthropocentric view of Christianity has contributed to the ecological crisis” in a profound way. Instead he places the crisis of climate change within the broader context of climate justice in which “the rights of the most vulnerable need to be protected.” Myoung expands this to include both the most vulnerable human communities and those non-human species most vulnerable to climate change. To meet this crisis, he makes a bold proposal: We should not seek to revise the Christian doctrine of creation. Instead we should focus on theological anthropology and expand the traditional meaning of humans created in the image of God to being part of what he terms the “Homo Oikos Sacralis” (the human sacred household). According to Myoung-Ho, this will help us “see our neighbors with different eyes” and “encourage the church to take the environmental concerns seriously.”

He supports this claim by drawing on the writings of the GTU’s Professor Cynthia Moe-Lobeda, as well as the writings of Sallie McFague, Jürgen Moltmann and UC Berkeley’s Richard Norgaard. He then offers a technical scientific model, an “Integrated Assessment Model”, to support his claim that damages due to climate change must be addressed from the point of view environmental economics as well as equity.

Congratulations, Myoung! We look forward with great expectation to the publication of his dissertation and believe it has the potential to have a significant impact on the academic, church and public communities all of which stand in real need of a new vision to spurn our renewed commitment to addressing climate change and climate justice.

The CTNS Graduate Student Fellowship in Theology and Science is named in honor of Nobel Prize Laureate Charles H. Townes (1915-2015), a member of the CTNS Board of Directors for nearly thirty years.