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Conference 2015


CTN Conference Leuven / Mechelen Belgium

February 26 -28 / 2015

Trusting Children and God: Religiosity in Early Childhood

Child Theology Network (CTN)

Since the 1990's the concept of Kindertheologie has influenced the vision on religious education in Europe. Starting with the informal network of Kindertheologie Bewegung in Germany, the interest in Kindertheologie has been growing across different European countries.
The Jahrbuch für Kindertheologie (JaBuKi), published by Calwer Verlag from 2002 onwards, has become a channel for research and practice related to this movement. In 2009 the network arranged its first conference in Loccum, extending the German network to include people from several European countries. The second and third conference (Kampen, the Netherlands (2011) and Trondheim, Norway (2013)) gave the opportunity for other countries to draw the card of theologizing with children and the Child Theology Network (CTN) was born.


The forth conference (2015) in Leuven / Mechelen continues the tradition of an international conference of the CTN every other year.


Locaties Leuven en Mechelen.jpg

Coordinating committee

The preparation for the conference is coordinated by a committee consisting of:

  • Univ.-Prof. (i. R.) Dr. theol. Gerhard Büttner, Emeritus at Technische Universität, Dortmund, Germany.
  • Prof. Dr. Annemie Dillen, Associate Professor in Pastoral and Empirical Theology at Catholic University Leuven, Belgium.
  • Dr. Katharina Kammeyer, Lecturer Religionspädagogik at Technische Universität, Dortmund, Germany.
  • Dr. Joke Maex, Lecturer Religious Education at Thomas More Kempen, Vorselaar, Belgium.

The concepts of theology, philosophy and spirituality connected to children's expressions continue to challenge both the academic disciplines and the education of children. The concepts of the child, of childhood and of learning are changing in public education as well as in church life. This process varies across Europe.


  1. The conference hopes to gather insights in the development of religiosity of young children and good practices of religious education in kindergarten.
  2. The aim of the conference is to bring together researchers from different countries who are interested in a) religiosity in (early) childhood and b) in theologizing and philosophizing with (young) children.
  3. Participants are asked to share empirical studies as well as discussions of specific theological, philosophical or spiritual issues that affect the interplay between (young) children and adults.
  4. There should be an emphasis on the possible significance children's voices could have on theology, as there is an extensive discussion going on concerning child theology as theology of, by, for or with the child.

Conference Programme