Christian higher education in a globalizing world: a co-creation story — Dr. Leung Wing Tai

Christian Higher Education in A Globalizing World: 

A Co-Creation Story

Wing Tai LEUNG

Dr. Wing Tai LEUNG (LEUNG) is the Founding President of Lumina College. He was formerly working in Breakthrough youth ministry for 40 years. He served in public and community works, including Central Policy Unit of Hong Kong Government and Council Member of three universities in Hong Kong. LEUNG received his PhD (Communication) from Regent University, Master of Fine Arts (Cinema-Television) from University of Southern California, MA (Radio-TV-Film) from Bowling Green State University, and Master of Theological Studies from Gordon-Conwell Seminary.

In view of the world being in a crisis of fragmentation, LEUNG explored the Christian mind in the development of the emerging world in a global context, bringing also special relevance to the Asian context.  Adopting a co-creation approach, he elaborated how Christian higher education has been adapting herself in response to the emerging world. He believed that Christian higher education could be a harbinger for reunifying the world through collaboration, intercultural communication, and community building. Christian higher education could be a counter culture in the marketplace of ideas, among conflicting worldviews and chaos of values. In it, students are nurtured to embrace diversity of cultures and co-create culture with God to face this internationalizing world.

Having explored the social landscape of machine culture in a globalizing world, LEUNG suggested four models of internationalization as possible responses of Christian higher education reaching out to the global world, namely: "Internal", "External", "Digital Network" and "Co-creation" models. Their relationship to global fragmentation and possible reunification were identified. LEUNG strongly recommended the "Co- creation" model which is biblically based. The co-creation model goes beyond simply setting up partnership with overseas schools, it includes also "cultural dialogue, partnering and indigenous contextualization. Faith and learning integration would be done in multiple perspectives and cultures." 

How can the co-creation model of internationalization work? LEUNG illustrates Lumina College as a case for Christian higher education in Hong Kong, China. Inaugurated in 2015, Lumina College has the vision of approaching Christian higher education in three dimensions: "coherency", "creativity" and "commitment".

  1. The principle of Coherency starts from the belief that the world is God's world, both in creation and redemption. This perspective places emphasis on worldviews and value systems. “God’s world” is the foundation of our Christian worldview and is the starting point for any possible integration of faith and learning.

  2. The principle of Creativity reminds us that we are co-creators with God. We are not only stewards of God to take care of the garden or the earth. We are also called to create culture to plow the land, and to collaborate with God in continuous creation.

  3. The principle of Commitment is relational. It is our commitment to love God and love our neighbors. Hence, education and commitment involve the whole person; we care for and serve others as our Father is a loving father, and love demands the commitment of the whole person. 

The Co-creation model references the notion of Mediator of Christ as Christians to serve as agents of reconciliation. A few pre-requisites are suggested: Intercultural Shaping of Curriculum, Dialogic Communication, Global Perspectives, Hybrid Pedagogy with Human and Mediated Modes, Inquiry Approach to Pedagogy, Culture Making Projects, and Mediatoring as a Way of Life. The impact of Co-creation model has some precedence. LEUNG quoted the most prominent one: Harvard-Yenching Institute to illustrate. Today at most prestigious universities, the chair professors of Chinese studies came from it.  Started as a small Christian college in the East in 1919, Yenching University could make a pivotal change in the Western partnering university and then changed the world. This is what Lumina College is seeking after.

In the concluding remarks, LEUNG reiterated and reaffirmed: “Christian higher education is a battlefield among conflicting worldviews… We need to provide a coherency in understanding God’s created world”; “Culture making is the best expression of the Christian worldview and a praxis of coherency.  To be human is to create culture, to co-create with God and collaborate with others, including those from other cultures”, “Commitment to share our lives, our resources, our talents, and our destinies with others is the ultimate goal of Christian high education. We need to be committed to God and through this commitment love others and God's creation. We are relational beings and through our connections with God, human society, and mother earth we shall find the best fulfillment in life."




有見及世界正處於割裂的危機,梁探究基督徒思維在全球化新興世界的發展趨勢。他採用一個「共同創造」的導向方法,解釋基督教高等教育是如何面對及適應全球化新興世界的處境。 他相信基督教高等教育可以透過合作、文化交流和社群的建立,成為一個建立世界和諧合一的先驅。 他亦認為在現今商業市場文化及價值混亂的新興世界處境中,基督教高等教育可以成為一種抗衡的文化。 在當中,學生將會被培育去擁抱不同文化,及與神一起共同創新文化去面對這個被割裂的世界。

在探究全球性機械文化所塑造的社會山脈的同時,梁指出了基督教高等教育可以採用四個國際化的模式,去面對這個世界,即是:「對內」 、「對外」 、「數碼網絡」和「共同創造」四個模式。 梁建議最佳的一種是「共同創造」模式,因為它是建基於聖經的教導。這種「共同創造」模式是超越了一般性的海外分校的設立,它更包括了『文化對話,夥伴建立和本色化處境的適應,並須在多重視角和文化對話中完成信仰和學術的整合。』

「共同創造」模式是如何運作的? 梁以恩光書院作為個案舉例說明之。 恩光書院開創於2015年,它具有三個基督教高等教育的遠象,包括:「整存性」,「創意性」和「委身」。 (1) 「整全性」的原則是始於相信世界就是神所創造及救贖的。「這個世界就是神的世界」- 這個信念就是基督徒世界觀的基礎和任何可以實現信仰與學習的整合的起點。 (2) 「創意性」的原則是要確認我們是與神共同創造這個世界的。我們不僅是做神的管家、照顧這個世界及神的伊甸園,更是被神呼召去創造文化、耕種田地,與神一起繼續創造這個世界。 (3) 「委身」的原則是帶有關係性的。因著我們對神的愛、我們也須愛及我們的鄰舍。並且,教育和委身也是包括整個人的,正因為我們所相信的神是一位慈愛的父親,我們所付出的愛也必須是屬於整個人委身的愛。

「共同創造」模式是以基督作為中保,基督徒成為和解的代辦人為基礎的。其中成功的先決條件如下:它必須具備「課程的塑造」,「溝通對話」,「全球性視野」, 「混合教學法」,「查問引導教學方法」,「文化製造課業」等。 「共同創造」模式是有先例可循的,梁亦引用哈佛燕京學社舉例說明之。 今日大部分有名氣的大學內研究中國的專家教授們都是從那裏出來的。 燕京大學在中國只是一所十分微少的大學,卻可以為它的西方夥伴哈佛大學帶來軸心的改變,後來更能夠改變整個世界。這就是今日恩光書院所致力追尋的。

在總結裏,梁重申及肯定說:“ 基督教高等教育是眾多衝突世界觀的戰場… 我們需要對神所創造的世界提供一個整全的世界觀”,“ 文化製造就是建立基督徒世界觀一個最有效的表達方式,回歸人性必須是創新文化,並且是與神同工,與其他的人、包括是不同文化的人同工”“ 基督教高等教育的最終目標是要委身於與其他人分享我們的生命、資源、才幹和我們的命運。 我們需要對神委身及透過這個委身愛及其他的人和神的創造。 透過我們和神建立的關係、與人類社會、及所處的大地,讓我們一同找到更豐盛的生命。

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