Seton Hall University

A Symposium in Honor of Dr. John C. H. Wu  

Dr. John C. H. Wu

The Department of Catholic Studies won a grant from the Education Division, Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (TECO) in New York City to sponsor: The Asian Experience at Seton Hall University – A Symposium in Honor of Dr. John Ching Hsiung Wu 吴经熊 (1899-1986). The Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in New York is one of twelve offices under the Washington D.C.-based Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office (TECRO), Taiwan's de facto Embassy in the United States. The two-day symposium is organized by the Department of Catholic Studies, the Asian Studies Program, Seton Hall Law School and sponsored by the New Jersey Catholic Historical Commission.

About The Event
The two-day symposium will be held on Thursday, April 21 and Friday, April 22, 2016 on the campus of Seton Hall University in honor of the life and work of scholar Dr. John Ching Hsiung Wu, a prominent Chinese jurist and writer whose specialization was Christian spirituality, literature, and jurisprudence. He is most noted for his examination on the work of Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. and as lead author of Chinese Constitution of 1946. In 1957, Dr. Wu was appointed judge of the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague by the President of the Nationalist Chinese Government, Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek.

Earlier in his career, Dr. Wu had served as an adviser to the Chinese delegation at the United Nations Conference in San Francisco in 1945 and Nationalist Ambassador from China to the Vatican, 1947-49. The Department of Catholic Studies will host two key-note speakers, the son of Dr. Wu, John Wu Jr. and his nephew Gregory Wu, Assistant Principal at Benjamin Franklin Middle School in Ridgewood, New Jersey. Furthermore, national and international scholars coming from various institutions including the University of Notre Dame, Whitworth University, University of San Francisco, and Seton Hall Law School etc. will present their research and findings at the symposium. Exhibits and Archival Material from the University Archives, Walsh Library and Seton Hall Law School will also be part of the symposium.

Moreover, next year also marks the 65-th anniversary of the start of the Far-Eastern Institute at Seton Hall University and the varied connections between the Asian continent and Seton Hall University. The Institute of Far Eastern Studies was founded in the midst of the Korean Was (1950-53), when the United States began to realize the growing need to know more about Asia. On October 29, 1951, Monsignor John L. McNulty, then president of Seton Hall University, hosted a historic luncheon; the guests included prominent representatives of several Asian nations, including the People's Republic of China, Taiwan, Japan, Korea and Vietnam. He took the occasion to announce the University's establishment of an Institute of Far Eastern Studies that would seek to promote better understanding and relationships between people in Asia and America.

Monsignor McNulty initially entrusted the institute to Reverend John J. Cain, a University faculty member, and to the founding advisory board that include Reverend Paul Yu Pin, Archbishop of Nanking, China, and Cardinal and president of the Republic of China's Fu Jen Catholic University; John Chang Myun, prime minister of the Republic of Korea; Kotaro Tanaka, chief justice of Japan, who later became president of Tokyo University; Ngo Dinh Diem, former prime minister of Vietnam and later president of the Republic of Vietnam; and John C.H. Wu, a law professor of Seton Hall University.

About the Department of Catholic Studies
Established in 2012-- the Year of Faith and the 50th anniversary of the opening of Vatican II -- the Department of Catholic Studies at Seton Hall University, America's oldest diocesan university, fosters Seton Hall's Catholic identity and mission by exploring the relationship of Catholicism with all areas of culture and learning. Since its focus is the Church's encounter and dialogue with society or the Church in the world, Vatican II designated a special place for Catholic Studies as a discipline in academic life. As a result, Catholic Studies is a dialogue between Catholicism and culture that occurs in a special way at Catholic universities. While respecting other disciplines, Catholic Studies explores theology and philosophy in relation to culture, humankind and the world. This methodological approach opens up a place for all other disciplines; these enrich Catholic Studies and are enriched in return.

Catholic Studies builds upon and develops the themes and questions addressed in the University Core Curriculum and is complementary to other disciplines. A bachelor's degree in Catholic Studies is an interdisciplinary, liberal arts degree -a major that enhances every other major.

Categories: Faith and Service

For more information, please contact:

  • Gloria Aroneo
  • (973) 275-2808