M.A., M.A., Ph.D., University of Edinburgh; Study: University of Cambridge
Professor Dr. Anthony Gittins has taught Theology and Cultural Anthropology at the Catholic Theological Union in Chicago since 1984. He has held the Bishop Ford Chair of Mission Theology, and is currently Professor of Theology and Culture.
Born in Manchester (England) and a member of the Congregation of the Holy Spirit (Spiritans) he was ordained a Roman Catholic priest in 1967. He subsequently earned M.A.s in both Linguistics and Social Anthropology, and later a Ph.D. in Social Anthropology from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. In the 1988 and 1991 he was a Visiting Research Scholar at the University of Cambridge and then the University of Oxford, England.
In his teaching, Gittins touches the interface between the social sciences and theological disciplines. He has taught, lectured, offered workshops or given retreats in more than thirty countries from Africa to the Pacific. He has extensive experience as a hospital chaplain in Albany, NY, where he worked during Summers between 1969 and 2000. For the past twenty-five years he has with and among homeless women on the streets of Chicago and in a shelter. For seven of those years he was part of Genesis House – a community where women struggle to escape from prostitution.
Before coming to Chicago in 1984, Gittins worked for almost a decade among the Mende people of Sierra Leone, West Africa, as a missionary pastor, linguist and ethnographer. Since then he has done missionary anthropological work in a number of countries beyond Africa, including Pakistan, the Trobriand Islands and the Republic of Kiribati in the Central Pacific.
He has an adopted, multi-ethnic family: a daughter and four grandchildren.
He is the author of fifteen books on theological and anthropological topics, and on mission and spirituality. Most recently, Ministry At The Margins: Strategy and Spirituality for Mission (Orbis, 2002); A Presence That Disturbs: A Call to Radical Discipleship (Liguori, 2002); Come, Follow Me: The Commandments of Jesus (Liguori, 2004); Where There’s Hope, There’s Life. Women’s Stories and Practical Theology (Liguori, 2006); and Called to be Sent: Co-Missioned as Disciples Today (Liguori, 2008).