Rev. Dr. John Sianghio



I first heard a clear call to ministry during my deployment to Afghanistan in 2011. I wasn’t a minister or chaplain at the time. My professional background was in political science and human rights. Because I identified  as a Christian, soldiers in my unit would often talk with me about right and wrong, heaven and hell, and whether God could be found in the midst of war. I didn’t have all the answers then, and I don’t have them now, but I felt God pulling on my heartstrings to continue to engage with tough questions, messy situations, and the complicatedly beautiful people who face them. When I returned to the United States, I enrolled in Divinity School to pursue a Masters of Divinity and, later, a PhD in religious ethics. I am particularly passionate about teaching and preaching which I hold to be two sides of the same coin. I pursue this interest both in the context of Cosmopolitan as well as at the University of Chicago where I am faculty in the Divinity School and The College.

My ministry and ethic of pastoral care has been indelibly influenced by the churches in which I’ve worshipped and served: a suburban megachurch where I learned the value of effectively leveraging resources for the common good; a thriving congregation on the West Side of Chicago whose indigenous wisdom, resilience, and joy in the face of adversity, disinvestment, and systemic racism is an exemplar of Christian faithfulness; and an open and affirming United Methodist church on the South Side of Chicago whose commitment to diversity, active anti-racism, and the full inclusion of LGBTQIA+ children of God is an earthly echo of the City of God. Shaped by all of these communities, I strive to serve as a bridge builder between people of diverse backgrounds in our local community, as well as a conduit for peace, justice, and the Love of God to God’s wider world. Jesus loves you!


PhD, Religious Ethics-University of Chicago Divinity School
MDiv, Ministry-University of Chicago Divinity School
MA, Political Science-University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
BA (Distinction), English-University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

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