Anthony J. Gittins, CSSP

Professor Emeritus of Theology and Culture



MA, University of Edinburgh
PhD, University of Edinburgh


From 1980 to 1984, Professor Dr. Anthony J. Gittins, CSSp, taught Theology and Anthropology at The Missionary Institute, London, UK.  Subsequently, from 1984 to 2011 he was, first, Associate Professor of Mission Studies, then (1990) Professor of Theological Anthropology at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago.  He held the Bishop Ford Chair of Mission Theology between 1999 and 2008, and is now Emeritus Professor of Theology and Culture.


A native of England and  a religious Spiritan (Congregation of the Holy Spirit), he was ordained in 1967, after which he earned M.A.s (Summa cum Laude) in Theoretical Linguistics and in Social Anthropology, and later a Ph.D. in Social Anthropology from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland.  After ministry in Africa, he pursued post-doctoral research at the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge, England.


As an anthropologist, Gittins was always concerned to explore the theological sciences from that perspective.  Apart from teaching courses on Mission theology and spirituality, pastoral approaches to African witchcraft, and African Traditional Religion, he team-taught courses with Professors of Bible, Liturgy and Pastoral Care.  He continues to do Consultancy work and offer workshops, seminars, short courses and retreats, within the United States and further afield, from Australia to Africa.


In terms of pastoral ministry, he worked for thirty years with and among homeless women on the streets of Chicago and then in a soup kitchen run by the Jesus People.  For seven of those years he was part of Genesis House – a community where women struggle to escape from prostitution.


For almost a decade (1972-1980) he lived among the Mende people of Sierra Leone, West Africa, as a missionary pastor, linguist and ethnographer.  From 1980 to 1984 he was Formation Director in London, and lectured at the Missionary Institute there.  Since then he has done missionary anthropological work in a number of countries beyond Africa, including Pakistan, Kiribati, and the/Trobriand Islands.

Since 2011:



Living Mission Interculturally: Faith, Culture, and the Renewal of Praxis (Liturgical Press, 2015);


The Way of Discipleship: Women. Men, and the Call to Mission (Liturgical Press, 2016),


Courage and Conviction: Unpretentious Christianity (Liturgical Press, 2018).

LA Religious Education Congress:

2011 “Would Jesus Recognize the Church?”

2012  “The Urgency of Discipleship and Evangelization Today

2012  “Are There any Christian Disciples Today?”

2015  Missionary Discipleship

2015  Discipleship and Women

2017  Missionary Discipleship as Authentic Christianity

2017  The Future of the Global Church: Building Intercultural Communities.”


Religious Formation Conference:

2013  “From International to Intercultural Communities.”  (9 CDs)


Now You Know Media

Discipleship  (4DVDs)

Seek First The Kingdom (5 DVDs).