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Image of Mona Tokarek LaFosse

Assistant Professor of New Testament and Early Christian Studies

  • PhD University of Toronto, Department for the Study of Religion (2011)
  • MA Wilfrid Laurier University, Religion and Culture (2001)
  • Hons BA University of Waterloo, Anthropology (1998)
  • BRE Columbia Bible College, Biblical Studies (1994)


Tel: 416-585-4545

Teaching & Research Interests

Mona teaches basic-degree and graduate-level courses in the area of New Testament and Early Christianity. She knew she wanted to pursue biblical studies when she learned New Testament Greek. Around that time, she also became interested in cultural anthropology as a window into honouring the diversity of cultural lenses through which people see and experience the world. Her teaching and research reflect these interests as she strives to understand the early Christians within their own cultural and social setting and time but also to consider the lenses modern readers bring to their readings of the text.

Mona taught basic-degree and graduate-level courses previously at Martin Luther University College and Huron University College. She also has experience in undergraduate teaching in the Christian Bible, sacred texts, and religious studies at Luther and Wilfrid Laurier University. Her past courses have included a range of topics, including aging and ethics, apocalypticism, evil, exegesis, Gospel of Mark, Koine Greek, Paul (especially his first letter to the Corinthians), orality, performing gospel stories, storytelling, and zombies.

Her research explores age, aging and age structure in the context of the ancient Mediterranean setting of Christianity in the late first and early second centuries (especially 1 Timothy), including intergenerational relationships and how the life course illuminates social dynamics among women and men in early Christian texts. She also explores the impact of the oral aspects of storytelling within the early Christian texts.

Within the context of theological education, Mona is also interested in embodying the text through performing (and encouraging others to perform) the stories of Jesus and in learning from Indigenous elders, storytellers and teachers about the wisdom of this land as we work toward honouring the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action and healing. 

Selected Publications


In print. Honouring Age: The Social Dynamics of Age Structure in 1 Timothy (revised doctoral dissertation), McGill-Queens University Press, Studies in Judaism and Christianity series, Dr. Richard Ascough, series editor.


Book chapters

  • “Those Who Hear: The Power of Learners in 1 Timothy.” In Religion and Education in Antiquity: Essays in Honour of Michel Desjardins. Edited by Alexander Damm, 147-70. Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2019. doi:10.1163/9789004384613_008. (R)
  • “Women, Children and House Churches” in The Early Christian World, edited by Philip Esler, 385-405. Second Edition. London and New York: Routledge, 2017.
  • “Age Hierarchy and Social Networks among Urban Women in the Roman East.” In Mediterranean Families in Antiquity: Households, Extended Families, and Domestic Space, edited by Sabine R. Huebner and Geoffrey Nathan, 204-20. Chichester, West Sussex: Wiley Blackwell, 2017. (R)


  • 2023 “New Testament Apocrypha: More Noncanonical Scriptures, volume 2: A panel review.” Studies in Religion/Sciences Religieuses 52, no.2. Published online first, April 25, 2023. doi/10.1177/00084298231170010
  • 2023 “Storytelling, orality and embodiment in New Testament Apocrypha: More Noncanonical Scriptures, volume 2.” Studies in Religion/Sciences Religieuses 52, no.2. Published online first, April 25, 2023.
  • 2022 "Inspiring Intergenerational Relationships: Aging and the New Testament from One Historian’s Perspective" Religions 13, no. 7: 628. (Special edition:  “Spirituality and Aging: Finding Meaning in the Context of Personal and Societal Change,” edited by Jane Kuepfer.)
  • 2019 “CSPS/ACÉP: A small but stable society.” With Eric Crégheur, Maria Dasios, Theodore de Bruyn, Miriam De Cock, Robert Kitchen, Timothy Pettipiece and Andrius Valevicius. Studies in Religion. (Aug 31): 1-8.
  • 2013 “Women’s Roles in the Letters to Timothy and Titus.” Women in the Bible issue of Christian Reflection: A Series on Faith and Ethics. Baylor University, 2013.

Book reviews

  • 2020 Book review for L. L. Welborn, The Young Against the Old: Generational Conflict in First Clement. Lanham: Lexington Books/Fortress Academic (2018). Review of Biblical Literature 22: 461-64. (Invited review)
  • 2017 Book review of The Power of Children: The Construction of Christian Families in the Greco-Roman World by Margaret Y. MacDonald (2014). Studies in Religion 46(2): 327-329.
  • 2012 Book review of “No Longer Male or Female”: Interpreting Galatians 3:28 in Early Christianity by Pauline Nigh Hogan (2008). Studies in Religion 41(1):123-25.


Memberships & Affiliations

  • Canadian Society for Patristic Studies/Association Canadienne des Études Patristiques (2001-present)
  • The Canadian Society of Biblical Studies (2000-present)
  • Society of Biblical Literature (Member: 2002, 2006-present)
  • KW Biblical Colloquium (Member: 2007-2018)
  • The Context Group (participant in 2003, 2007, 2013)

Mona has been involved with the executive of the Canadian Society of Biblical Studies (Student Liaison Officer, 2003-2005) and the Canadian Society of Patristic Studies/Association Canadienne des Études Patristiques (Programme Coordinator in 2006, including organizing a lecture by Bart Ehrman, and then in various roles since 2013). She is currently President of the CSPS/ACÉP.


Selected Courses

  • EMP 1621 - Multi-Religious Theological Education and Leadership
  • EMB 1501 – New Testament I
  • EMB 1506 – New Testament II
  • EMB 3654 – Gospel of Mark and Christian Origins
  • EMB3571/EMB6571 – Zombies, the Bible and the End of the World


*Photo courtesy of Martin Luther University College