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Practical Theology

“You are the Body of Christ”: Ecclesiology for Troubled Times

When: June 9, 2022, 3:30 pm - Thursday

Where: Swang 100

Session 5

Session Abstract

A recent Gallup publication announced, “U.S. Church Membership Falls Below Majority for First Time,” and reported that membership in houses of worship had fallen below 50% for the first time in the polling organization’s history. Although the causes of this trend are complex, at the very least it underscores our need to develop and articulate a robust ecclesiology. This panel brings together three diverse presenters who explore visions of the church in these troubled times.

 

Paper Abstracts

Richard Norton, Order of Julian of Norwich, “Julian of Norwich, The Church and Covid19: Towards a Scholarly and Pastoral Approach to the Present Crisis”

Here I examine some parts of the “Showings of Divine Love” and consider how Julian of Norwich might inspire us in creating a stigma-free, systematic, and sensitive pastoral approach to those diagnosed with Covid19 “Corona Virus” and especially those we are given to love and care for both personally and in the ministry of the Church.

 

Lana Lockhart, Spelman College, “Her Own Anointing: Gender Equality and African American Churches of Christ”

Though some Churches of Christ have recently taken a more egalitarian approach to women’s exercise of their spiritual gifts, these changes are virtually non-existent in predominantly African American Churches of Christ. Rather, these women are told that God wants their silence, not their sermons. This paper explores the implications that a lack of spiritual equality has within the African American Churches of Christ as they seek to fulfill God’s calling in the world.

 

Gary S. Selby, Emmanuel Christian Seminary at Milligan, “Looking Back Together: The Church as Community of Memory”

This paper explores the church’s vital role as the bearer of sacred memory, building on Miroslav Volf’s contention that it is within the community of faith that we find the possibility for integrating personal pain and loss into the larger salvation story. Drawing on biblical, theological, and literary resources, I explore the church’s communal memory as a source of healing and hope for grievance, personal and national sin, and losses attendant to aging and death.

Speakers

Gary S. Selby, Emmanuel Christian Seminary at Milligan University, Convener

  • Richard Norton, Order of Julian of Norwich, “Julian of Norwich, The Church and Covid19: Towards a Scholarly and Pastoral Approach to the Present Crisis”
  • Lana Lockhart, Spelman College, “Her Own Anointing: Gender Equality and African American Churches of Christ”
  • Gary S. Selby, Emmanuel Christian Seminary at Milligan University, “Looking Back Together: The Church as Community of Memory”
  • Miriam Y. Perkins, Emmanuel Christian Seminary at Milligan University, Respondent

Registration Open Now

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James Cone with conferee at the CSC in 2017

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Pulitzer Prize winner Marilynne Robinson delivering the CSC plenary address

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Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), delivering the CSC plenary address.

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US Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith delivering the CSC plenary address

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David Brooks engaging conferees during breakfast at the CSC

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