For his work in promoting Franciscan values and the goals of diversity, equity and inclusion, Fr. Linh Hoang, O.F.M, Ph.D., professor of religious studies, has been elected to a two-year term on the board of directors of the Catholic Theological Society of America (CTSA).
His election was confirmed at the CTSA’s annual convention held in Atlanta in June.
“It is an honor to be elected by my peers. It means that they recognize my leadership and theological contributions to the Society and the larger world of Catholic theology,” said Linh, who has been active in the CTSA since 2006, when he was completing his Ph.D. in theology.
“I am humbled to be of service to the Society and the Church.”
With a membership of 1,300, the CTSA is the world’s largest professional association of Roman Catholic theologians who are dedicated to promoting studies and research in theology, relating theological science to contemporary problems, and fostering a more effective theological education by providing a forum for the exchange of views among theologians and scholars in other disciplines.
“It’s about upholding the traditions of the Church and the message of scripture and using them as a lens through which to view current issues and how to address them.”
Chief among those issues, according to Fr. Linh, are acknowledging and upholding the dignity of all creation – especially the poor and marginalized who do not have a voice – and promoting peace and the resolution of conflict. Having a Franciscan presence on the CTSA board will help place these Franciscan values front and center.
“It is important to encounter others where they are in life, and to engage in dialogue with them,” he said. “It is a culture of encounter that inspired Pope Francis, and it’s also the Gospel message that St. Francis of Assisi practiced and embodied.”
Linh’s extensive work in Asian and Asian-American theology – including a focus on race and racism in the Church and against Asian Americans – will be foundational to his service on the CTSA board.
“As a member of the under-represented in the Church and academic theology, I believe it is important that under-represented voices be raised in the Society as well as the universal Church. It is not just within the pews that the under-represented are sustaining the Church, but they are also making an impact on the intellectual level,” explained Fr. Linh.
Fr. Linh has either written, edited, or reviewed nearly three-dozen articles, books, and book chapters, and has presented on subjects such as diversity, slavery, and racism. He is also a co-creator of a certificate pastoral program for ministry to Asian American Catholics, and is a member of the boards of St. Bonaventure University and the Zenas Project.
Fr. Mark G. Reamer, '83 O.F.M., D.Min., guardian of Siena’s Friary and vice president for mission, said it is “a great tribute to Linh and to Siena College” that he has been elected by his peers to serve in a leadership capacity on the CTSA board.
“Fr. Linh will bring his abundant gifts and talents to the board as well as the distinctive Franciscan spirit and intellectual tradition,” he said.
Kiley Pendergast ’21, a religious studies graduate who is now assistant director for experience, and executive assistant in the Office of the President, said Fr. Linh's “devotion to Siena, his faith, and Franciscan education is evident in his classroom as he teaches with passion and patience.”
“In a fast-paced world, he is always happy to share his time and knowledge with both students and colleagues,” she said. “He is very deserving of being named to the CTSA board.”