Ancient Wisdom—Anglican Futures an emerging conversation at Trinity June 4-6, 2009


This event at Trinity School for Mission, near Pittsburgh, USA, June 4-6th is so good that even if I wasn't being asked to help plan, lead and speak at it, it would be the one event I would choose to go to this year.


1. Topic & Theme: With a focus on these following questions, it's some of the key ones on my radar for our church, and my one reflections and learning

"How do Anglican "insiders" welcome young evangelicals, post-evangelicals, and emergents who are attracted to the "Great Tradition"? How do inquiring "outsiders" perceive or participate in the distinctive anamnesia (memory) of Anglican worship and mission? How can the exchange between insiders and outsiders bear fruit in Anglicanism today? How will this emerging conversation stir the mind and heart of an Anglicanism in renewal?"

2.  Primary Input:  An amazing line up of guest teachers, who are on the front line of responding to these questions

  • Simon Chan, Professor of Systematic Theology at Trinity Theological College, Singapore, is author of Liturgical Theology: The Church as Worshiping Community
  • Tony Clark is Chaplain at Lee Abbey Community (UK) and teaches ethics and philosophy at Friends University.
  • Edith M. Humphrey, is Professor of New Testament at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary.
  • D. Stephen Long, Professor of Systematic Theology, Marquette University, is author of Theology and Culture: A Guide to the Discussion.
  • George Sumner is Principal of Wycliffe College, Toronto and author of The First and Last: The Claim of Jesus Christ and the Claims of Other Religious Traditions.
  • Andrew Walker, Professor of Theology and Education at King's College, London is co-author of Living Orthodoxy in the Modern World.
  • Samuel Wells is the Dean of Duke University Chapel and Research Professor of Christian Ethics at Duke Divinity School
  • Daniel H. Williams teaches patristics and historical theology at Baylor University and is author of Evangelicals and Tradition.

3.  Mode of interaction:  If that all sounds too heady, whilst these folks will be giving input of key material, it's not a series of lectures, but to provide materials for a conversation amongst church leaders, practitioners and academics.  How will that look in practice at the event?

a.  Worship: Using the book of Common Prayer, worship will be a background to the event b. Cohorts: People can group at the event around shared interests and experiences and needs c. Interaction: The headline teachers will provide input, but they will face questions by different church practitioners that we are calling 'missioners', and open questions from the other people attending the event.

My role along with Holly Rankin Zaher will be to provide and initial response to all the presenters, pushing back, and teasing out ideas, trying to join the dots to church practice, then to facilitate the questions from the panel of 'missioners', and lastly to enable a bigger informal conversation amongst all of us in the room, as well as some summation of the discussions.

There is a blog for the event, giving more information and discussion in the lead up to the event.  Would be great if you could spread the word and link to the event.