Carolyn Chau, Assistant Professor


Philosophy and Religious Studies

What courses do you currently teach?

RS 2132 Contemporary Moral Problems

RS 2207E Catholic Morality

RS 2271F Why the Church?

Areas of Research

Faith and Culture; Fundamental Moral Theology; Ecclesiology; Spirituality; Pastoral Theology; Philosophy of Religion; Philosophical Theology

Are you working on any current research projects?

My dissertation explored the question of how Catholic witness and mission might be lived in an increasingly secular and globalized cultural context.  To that end, I completed research on the work of Canadian philosopher Charles Taylor, especially his work on faith and secularization in the West, and the theological anthropology and ethics of twentieth century Swiss Catholic theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar. 

I am currently working on preparing my thesis for potential publication, and pursuing questions related to global Catholicism, peace-making, and dynamic forms of contemporary Christian witness.

How does your program make a difference?

The Catholic Studies program at King’s supports students in becoming more reflective, critical, and engaged in their understanding of Catholicism.  Understanding the rich theological, biblical, historical, and moral foundations of the Catholic faith is important in an age where religious commitment is increasingly dismissed, as religion remains a source of personal and moral value for many people.  One of the things the program offers students is the opportunity to grow in their awareness of the relationship between religious worldviews and ethical horizons, and their ability to recognize and articulate the spiritual dimensions of personal, political, and social existence.

What do you enjoy about working at King’s?

I enjoy very much the collegial and down-to-earth atmosphere at King’s.  I appreciate the celebration of interdisciplinary work, the emphasis on educating the whole human person, and the availability of various programs that are rare and special in higher education: programs that arise out of awareness of less advantaged, vulnerable persons and the need to address their situations and realities.

What are your interests outside of King’s?

I like to play soccer, paint, cook, attend classical music concerts, and see good movies.  In the past, volunteering and singing have also been significant sources of interest and joy outside of scholarly activity, and I hope to take these up again in the future.

Any other thoughts on your department and what makes it unique at King’s?

The Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies at King’s is one of the few joint departments of philosophy and religious studies in Canada.  This combination allows for a critical and engaged study of religions, as well as an intellectual commitment that supports personal formation and enhances one’s readiness to speak from a thoughtful and committed space in other settings.