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Honor-Shame Conference 2020

Reconciling the Nations

The 2020 Honor-Shame Conference will be held June 8–10, 2020 at Wheaton College. The conference will explore how honor and shame influence the gospel, the church, and various other disciplines, including theology, missiology, pastoral ministry, and counseling. The cost of the conference is currently $359, including food and lodging. Various discounts are available:

  • Student discount: $25;
  • Commuter discount: $75;
  • Group discount—register with 5 persons and the 6th person is free.

More information is available at the conference website.

History of the Conference

The inaugural Honor-Shame Conference was June 19–21, 2017 at Wheaton College. It gathered 285 persons from some 100 organizations—to learn and work together for the sake of the gospel. The conference theme was: Honor, Shame, and the Gospel: Reframing Our Message for 21st-Century Ministry.”

The seed idea for the Honor-Shame Conference was planted at Houston Baptist University in 2014 when a consultation of the International Orality Network (ION) brought 65 leaders together July 7–10. The conference was led by Samuel Chiang (director of ION at the time), and had as its theme,Beyond Literate Western Contexts: Honor and Shame and Assessment of Orality Preference.” Among the gathered were some who had begun writing or blogging about, or studying honor-shame in theology and missions. Some had corresponded by email. Most had never met face to face.

Highlights of the 2017 Honor-Shame Conference

Six plenary sessions were held; the presenters were David A. deSilva, Steven Hawthorne, Jayson Georges, Paul R. Gupta, Brent Sandy, and Jackson Wu. Plus, 28 workshops provided a variety of additional learning opportunities. Christopher Flanders served as moderator.

The 2017 conference succeeded in bringing together ministry practitioners and leaders from different disciplines and nations. Everyone was interested in some aspect of the intersection of honor, shame, and the gospel.” Innumerable connections were made. New initiatives were birthed. Among the most significant initiatives birthed—the Patronage Symposium held October 3–5, 2018 at Arab Baptist Theological Seminary in Beirut, Lebanon; and Crus Honor Restored” evangelistic presentation for their GodTools app.

Expectations for the 2020 conference

This year’s conference will bring together more scholars and practitioners from diverse fields. Most notable among the plenary speakers is John M. G. Barclay, Lightfoot Professor of Divinity at Durham University in Durham, England, and author of the acclaimed Paul and the Gift.

Jackson Wu, Theologian-in-Residence at Mission ONE, writes in a recent blog post: “While I cant be sure, I expect people will be talking about how honor and shame affect:

  • Leadership development in the church
  • Atonement theology
  • Ministry among refugees
  • Grace and patronage (After all, Barclays Paul and the Gift is widely regarded as the most significant book in biblical studies over the past 30 years.)
  • Fear-power cultural perspectives”

In addition to the seven plenary sessions, 40 outstanding workshops will be offered. About two-thirds of the workshop presenters hold PhD degrees. The conference will offer a dynamic learning community and will benefit everyone engaged in Christian ministry in our broken world.

For more information, check out the conference website or the registration page. A two-page promotion sheet is also available here. Or write to Werner Mischke, conference coordinator at

Image credit: Honor-Shame Conference.
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