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Scholarship recipients b

The IWM reflects in its theological research work the missionary dimension of the church in the world today.

In its search for a contemporary understanding of mission, it takes up the impulses of Vatican II and develops them further. Mission is understood as a two-way communication process, shaped by the respective contexts of life and guided by the existential needs of human beings. The research fields of the IWM result from this basic understanding:

In its reflection on mission, IWM integrates church engagement in education, commitment to health and social justice, ecological sustainability and human rights with the question of the life-transforming potential of the gospel. In doing so, it is committed to interreligious dialogue at various levels and learns from the practice of intercultural cooperation with all “people of good will.”
The growing importance of worldwide migration and increasing mobility encourages reflection on the role of the church in the face of global networks and currents. In doing so, it focuses especially on the situation of the economically disadvantaged and socially marginalized. It aims at an intercultural theology that knows itself contextually located and does not lose sight of the vocation of humanity to a family. In the confrontation with an ambivalent mission history, it gains criteria for the discernment of spirits in the encounter of gospel and culture.

Scientists at the IWM Annual Conference 2013

Our publications Z

The IWM regularly publishes monographs and anthologies in its own publication series “Weltkirche und Mission”, which specialises in current mission-theological, global church and intercultural topics. Another focus is the publication of studies in the series “Research Results” of the German Bishops’ Conference Research Group on International Church Affairs.

Political Pentecostalism - Transformation of Global Christianity in the Mirror of Theological Motives and Plural Normativity
This volume focuses on the increasing and newly perceivable worldwide engagement of Pentecostal church actors in politics and the public sphere. It is not only about a religious coloring of political discourses, but also about a lasting change in the self-image and self-understanding of these actors. Against this background, a new tension between religion and politics is emerging that challenges academia, churches, politics, and society as a whole. For the first time, various religious-political scenes of Pentecostalism are examined in an intercontinental comparison. The comparative analysis is complemented by contributions from experts from various disciplines, who shed light on the phenomenon in a comprehensive and perspective-rich manner.

Leandro L. Bedin Fontana, Markus Luber

Responses of the Catholic Church to HIV and AIDS in Africa: Lessons Learned
The study "Lessons from the Catholic Church's Responses to HIV and AIDS in Africa" summarises the results of a broad, international field study conducted by African and German theologians and health experts in Ethiopia, Zambia and Malawi between 2010 and 2013 on behalf of the Commission for the World Church of the German Bishops' Conference. The former IWM research assistant, Dr Gregor Buß, was involved in conducting the study. The aim of the study is to allow those affected and church representatives from the three African countries to have their say in order to draw an authentic picture of the challenges posed by HIV and AIDS....

Klaus Fleischer et al.

The theological reception of spread factors and preventive measures of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Africa
In the Fight against HIV/AIDS in Africa it is necessary to identify the cultural and socio-economic risk-factors that influence the spread of the epidemic. This study examines these factors and their theological and pastoral reception in the Church of Africa.

Markus Patenge


Series „Weltkirche und Mission“ (Global Church and Mission)


The series “Weltkirche und Mission” deals with questions of the Global Church and its tasks with the focus on the missionary responsibility of the Church, among others in the context of questions of the history of mission, contextual theology and the presence of Catholics of a different origin and mother tongue in Germany.

Presently, the publications are available only in German.


You can purchase further publications in the online shop.


Through research, the IWM provides missiological groundwork in an intercultural perspective and reflects on the shape of the wordwide church.


Through teaching at the Sankt Georgen Graduate School of Philosophy and Theology, the IWM addresses questions of the mission of the church in theological discourse.


With annual conferences and study days, the IWM offers a platform for international exchange on current topics in missiology.


The programs of the IWM strengthen the importance of the church as a global learning community and support the work of the dioceses and Catholic aid organisations in Germany.