News

Stanley Hauerwas to Deliver 2017 CAPPS Lecture and Seminar Discussion

2017 CAPPS Lecture, Christianity is Madness, Stanley Hauerwas2017 CAPPS Lecture

On Thursday, October 12, Stanley Hauerwas will deliver the 2017 CAPPS Lecture in Christian Theology, entitled “Christianity is Madness: Kierkegaard and the Academy.” Beginning at 6:00 pm in 101 Nau Hall, the event is free and open to the public, with seating available on a first come, first served basis. For those unable to attend, the event will be livestreamed on Theological Horizons’s Facebook page here.

This annual series brings eminent Christian thinkers to the heart of the University of Virginia with public lectures that explore the relationship between faith and responsibility. These events are hosted by Theological Horizons and co-sponsored by the Project on Lived Theology. For more information, visit the Theological Horizons website here. Browse and listen to previous CAPPS Lectures in our resource collection here.

Bonhoeffer and Niebuhr event, Stanley Hauerwas, Eugene McCarraherSeminar Discussion with Eugene McCarraher

On Wednesday, October 11, Stanley Hauerwas and Eugene McCarraher will lead a seminar discussion on Bonhoeffer and Niebuhr, affirming their witness for today’s world. The free event will begin at 3:30 pm in 142 Gibson Hall, and the public is invited to attend.

Stanley Hauerwas is a longtime professor at Duke University, serving as the Gilbert T. Rowe Professor of Theological Ethics at Duke Divinity School with a joint appointment at the Duke University School of Law. Involved in the areas of systematic theology, philosophical theology and ethics, political theory, as well as the philosophy of social science and medical ethics, his work and research interests intersect across many disciplinary lines. His recent publications include The Work of Theology (Eerdmans, 2015) and Hannah’s Child: A Theological Memoir, 2nd Ed. (Eerdmans, 2012).

Eugene McCarraher is an associate professor of humanities and history and the associate director of the honors program at Villanova University. A former Charles Ryskamp Fellow of the American Council of Learned Societies (2005-2006), he has written for Books and CultureCommonweal, Dissent, In These TimesThe Nation, the Chicago TribuneThe Hedgehog Review and Raritan.

For more event details and up-to-date event listings please click here to visit the PLT Events page. We also post updates online using #PLTevents. To get these and other news updates, please like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @LivedTheology. To sign up for the Lived Theology monthly newsletter, click here.

On the Lived Theology Reading List: Bonhoeffer’s Reception of Luther

Bonhoeffer's Reception of LutherOn Bonhoeffer’s Two-Kingdoms Thinking

In Bonhoeffer’s Reception of Luther, author Michael P. DeJonge presents Bonhoeffer’s Lutheran theology of justification focused on the interpersonal presence of Christ in word, sacrament, and church.  DeJonge argues that the widespread failure to connect Bonhoeffer with the Lutheran two-kingdoms tradition has presented a serious obstacle in interpretation, and shows how this tradition informs Bonhoeffer’s reflections on war and peace, as well as his understanding of resistance to political authority. In all of this, DeJonge also argues that an appreciation of Luther’s ubiquity in Bonhoeffer’s corpus sheds light on his thinking, lends it coherence, and makes sense of otherwise difficult interpretive problems.

Reviews and endorsements of the publication include:

Bonhoeffer’s Reception of Luther is an excellent work, worthy of close reading and engagement. It promises to open up new vistas for better and more responsible understandings of Bonhoeffer s life, work, and ongoing significance. DeJonge shows convincingly how deeply Bonhoeffer was steeped in and in critical dialogue with Luther s thought and legacy, and likewise how recognition of this reality presents great opportunity for improved engagement with Bonhoeffer himself.”—Reading Religion

“This work will be essential for anyone interested in the development of Bonhoeffer’s theology. Michael DeJonge writes with remarkable clarity about some of the more complex and contested aspects of Bonhoeffer’s thought, offering provocative new insights into Bonhoeffer’s approach to the two kingdoms, Christian pacifism, and the challenges of resistance. Without ignoring the other theological influences on Bonhoeffer’s thought, this book makes a convincing case that to understand Bonhoeffer we must examine his reading and interpretation of Luther.”—Victoria J. Barnett, General Editor, Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works English Edition

“In this new work, rising star Michael DeJonge executes a lucid, patient and in the end devastating critique of North American readings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s theological legacy. That alone is worth the price of admission. Even better is the extraordinary retrieval he makes of Bonhoeffer’s core Lutheranism. DeJonge understands Luther better than many a Lutheran and Bonhoeffer better than any other North American interpreter. Tolle lege.”—Paul R. Hinlicky, Tise Professor of Lutheran Studies, Univerzita Komenskeho, Slovakia

For more information on the publication, click here.

Michael P. DeJonge is an Associate Professor of Religious Studies at the University of South Florida, and teaches in the areas of the history of Christian thought, theories and methods in religious studies, and modern religious thought. His research has focused on the twentieth-century German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and he sits on the board of the International Bonhoeffer Society and is a co-editor of the journal, Dietrich Bonhoeffer Yearbook.

For more of “On the Lived Theology Reading List,” click here. To engage in the conversation on Facebook and Twitter, @LivedTheology, please use #LivedTheologyReads. For more recommended resources from our fellow travelers, click here, #PLTfellowtravelers. To sign up for the Lived Theology monthly newsletter, click here.

Living in Community: Perkins House Established in Charlottesville

UVA Students Bridge the Gap Between Academia and Area Residents

The Perkins House residentsCurrent events in American social spaces, including the recent white supremacy rallies of August 11 and 12, have made loving your neighbor a difficult undertaking. Named in honor of civil rights activist John M. Perkins, The Perkins House has been established in Charlottesville’s 10th and Page neighborhood to commit to this endeavor. Its mission is to give undergraduate students the opportunity to live in a mixed-income, multi-ethnic, and inter-generational neighborhood to prepare them for a lifetime of incarnational ministry and community partnership.

This year’s residents, pictured above, include third-year students Ameenah Elam, Sarah Bland, Sade Akinbayo, Isabella Hall and Dominique DeBose. Throughout the year, they will work to build relationships with their neighbors in big and small ways, whether by opening up their home for dinners or simply helping carry groceries. Some will also partner with different nonprofit organizations working in the community.

The John and Vera Mae Perkins Foundation is supporting the new initiative, which director Garrett Trent said exemplifies the civil rights leader’s Christian faith and commitment to community development, racial reconciliation and nonviolent activism. These ideals are core to The Perkins House and its goal to mobilize the next generation in Christian Community Development practices in alignment with John and Vera Mae Perkins and CCDA.

John M. Perkins racial reconciliation, Discussion on the Lived Theology of John M Perkins, American Evangelicalism and the Practices of Peace, life of john m perkins, Let Justice Roll Down“This house will be a group of young people trying to live out an authentic faith, following the great commandment of loving God and loving each other,” Perkins said. “In this world today, there is so much division and violence, and it has been my life’s effort – and that of my wife and many others – to live a life of love.”

Visit The Perkins House’s website here. To read the feature story in UVA Today, click here.

John M. Perkins is a leader and major figure of the civil rights movement of the 1960s who founded Voice of Calvary Ministries, a Christian community development ministry, with his wife, Vera Mae. In 1983, the Perkinses established the John and Vera Mae Perkins Foundation for Reconciliation, Justice and Christian Community Development.

Fellow travelers are scholars, activists, and practitioners that embody the ideals and commitments of the Project on Lived Theology. We admire their work and are grateful to be walking alongside them in the development and dissemination of Lived Theology.

For more resources from our Fellow Travelers, click here. To engage in the conversation on Facebook and Twitter, @LivedTheology, please use #PLTfellowtravelers. To sign up for the Lived Theology monthly newsletter, click here.

On the Lived Theology Reading List: The Year of Small Things

The Year of Small Things:Radical Faith for the rest of UsRadical Faith for the Rest of Us

In The Year of Small Things, authors Sarah Arthur and Erin Wasinger recount the story of Arthur’s time in a new church located in the suburbs, and the unique challenge they faced: how to translate the practices of “radical” faith into their new context. Together with their friends and fellow church members Erin and Dave Wasinger, the Arthurs embarked on a yearlong experiment to implement twelve small practices of radical faith into their life. The Year of Small Things is told with humor, theological reflection, and practical insight, and explores such practices as simplicity, hospitality, accountability, sustainability, and social justice–but, most of all, discernment.

Reviews and endorsements of the publication include:

“This is the most provocative and profound book I’ve read in a long time. I plan to buy a box and give it to my friends so they can laugh, cry, repent, and soul-search as much as I did. Deeply moving–and necessary–for the faith community.”—Joel Salatin, renegade farmer (featured on Food, Inc.) and author of The Marvelous Pigness of Pigs: Respecting and Caring for All God’s Creation 

The Year of Small Things is the best kind of spiritual formation book: serious and funny, smart and vulnerable—and, most useful of all—practical. If you want to live the way of Jesus and struggle to know how in the midst of family busyness, financial struggle, even depression, Sarah Arthur and Erin Wasinger can be trusted to help you and your community re-imagine and engage practices of spiritual wholeness and social justice. Honestly, this is one of my favorite books this year.”—Jen Pollock Michel, author of Teach Us to Want and Keeping Place (2017)

For more information on the publication, click here.

Fellow travelers are scholars, activists, and practitioners that embody the ideals and commitments of the Project on Lived Theology. We admire their work and are grateful to be walking alongside them in the development and dissemination of Lived Theology.

For more of “On the Lived Theology Reading List,” click here. To engage in the conversation on Facebook and Twitter, @LivedTheology, please use #LivedTheologyReads. For more recommended resources from our fellow travelers, click here, #PLTfellowtravelers. To sign up for the Lived Theology monthly newsletter, click here.

Reports from the Field: Lived Theology Summer Interns to Give Final Presentations

SeedlingsThe 2017 Summer Interns in Lived Theology will give their final presentations on Tuesday, September 26 at the Bonhoeffer House, located at 1841 University Circle in Charlottesville. A reception will begin at 7 p.m., and the presentations will begin by 7:30. The public is invited, and admission is free.

Megan HelblingMegan Helbling

Megan (Col ’18) is majoring in English and religious studies. As a summer intern, Megan worked at The Haven, a multi-service day shelter for people experiencing homelessness in downtown Charlottesville. Megan is interested in studying the practical ethics of interactions with those on the margins of society, a biblical and moral approach to poverty, and the influences and failures of the Christian social gospel in American cities.

Sarah Katherine DoyleSarah Katherine Doyle

Sarah (Col ’18) is majoring in English and religious studies. This summer, SK served women who are survivors of trafficking, addiction, and prostitution at Magdalene, a residential program connected with Thistle Farms Social Enterprises in Nashville, Tennessee.

 

Joseph KreiterJoseph Kreiter

Joseph (Col ’17) was a double major in East Asian studies and English–program in literary prose. For his PLT summer internship, Joe worked with Urban Adamah, a Jewish community farm in downtown Berkeley, California, which seeks to integrate Judaism, organic farming, mindfulness, and social action to foster love, justice, and sustainability. While working toward these goals with Urban Adamah, Joe also explored the relationship between individual spirituality and broader religious tradition.

The Summer Internship in Lived Theology is an immersion program designed to complement the numerous existing urban and rural service immersion programs flourishing nationally and globally by offering a unique opportunity to think and write theologically about service. For more information on this initiative, please click here.

For updates about the PLT Summer Internship, click here. We also post updates online using #PLTinterns. To get these updates please like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter at @LivedTheology. To sign up for the Lived Theology monthly newsletter, click here.

“Walk Together”: Presiding Bishop Michael Curry Addresses Charlottesville

Bishop Michael Curry at St. Paul's Memorial Church, CharlottesvilleEncouraging Believers in the Wake of White Supremacy Rally

On Thursday, September 7, the Most Rev. Michael Curry, the Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church, preached at a special service of Holy Eucharist at St. Paul’s Memorial Church in Charlottesville. The service was held on a day when Bishop Curry made a pastoral visit to Episcopal clergy in the Charlottesville area and met with the governance bodies of the Diocese, representing the prayerful concern of the whole Church in his role as chief priest and pastor following the traumatic weekend of August 11 and 12.

In spite of the suffering past events has brought to our town and nation as a whole, Bishop Curry encouraged believers to remain steadfast and embrace the way of love:

“Imagine if love was the cardinal principle by which we lived and by which our legislatures vote. Imagine Congress. Imagine the White House. Imagine the United Nations. Imagine our churches. Imagine our communities, our homes. This way of Jesus, which is the way of the cross, which is the way of unselfish, sacrificial love is the way that changes lives and can change the world.

Our brother Charles Marsh at the University of Virginia, said this: ‘Jesus had founded the most revolutionary movement in human history, a movement built on the unconditional love of God and for the sake of the world, and a mandate to a community of people who lived that love, and in so doing, it changed the world.’

Don’t be ashamed to treat people with love. And don’t be ashamed to bear witness to the way of love. And don’t be ashamed to share the word of love, in word and deed, because this way of crucified love has changed lives and the world before and it can change it again. So Charlottesville, Virginia, lift up your head, straighten your back, walk together. Walk together, children! Black, white, red, yellow, and brown: walk together, children! Protestant, Catholic, Jew, Muslim, Hindu, Sikh, atheists: walk together, people of good will! Walk together, and work together! And live the way of love until the love of God transforms this world.”

To watch the entire service, click here. Bishop Curry’s biography can be found here.

The Most Reverend Michael Bruce Curry was installed as the 27th Presiding Bishop and Primate of The Episcopal Church on November 1, 2015.  He was elected and confirmed at the 78th General Convention of The Episcopal Church in Salt Lake City, UT, on June 27, 2015. He is the Chief Pastor and serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society and chair of the Executive Council of The Episcopal Church.

Fellow travelers are scholars, activists, and practitioners that embody the ideals and commitments of the Project on Lived Theology. We admire their work and are grateful to be walking alongside them in the development and dissemination of Lived Theology.

For more resources from our Fellow Travelers, click here. To engage in the conversation on Facebook and Twitter, @LivedTheology, please use #PLTfellowtravelers. To sign up for the Lived Theology monthly newsletter, click here.

Next week: Michael P. DeJonge Delivers Guest Lecture at UVA

Bonhoeffer’s Reception of Luther, Michael DeJongeOn Bonhoeffer’s Reception of Luther

On Wednesday, September 20, Michael P. DeJonge will deliver a guest lecture at UVA. With a focus on his recent book, Bonhoeffer’s Reception of Luther, the discussion will show how Bonhoeffer’s positions on a range of ethical-political issues – from race, to war and peace, to resisting state injustice – rest on a complex and balanced account of the relationship between theology and political life inherited through the Lutheran tradition. The talk will begin at 3:30 pm in Gibson Hall 142. Admission is free and the public is invited to attend.

For more background information on the topic, read one of DeJonge’s papers, “Martin Luther, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and Political Theologies,” in the Oxford Research Encyclopedia here.

Michael DeJonge is the Associate Professor of Religious Studies at the University of South Florida. He teaches in the areas of the history of Christian thought, theories and methods in religious studies, and modern religious thought. His research has focused on the twentieth-century, German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer.

For more event details and up-to-date event listings please click here to visit the PLT Events page. We also post updates online using #PLTevents. To get these and other news updates, please like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @LivedTheology. To sign up for the Lived Theology monthly newsletter, click here.

On the Lived Theology Reading List: Growing Pains

Growing Pains: How Racial Struggles Changed a Church and a School, by Christopher H. MeehanHow Racial Struggles Changed a Church and School

In Growing Pains, author Christopher Meehan tells the painful story of integrating Timothy Christian School in suburban Chicago during the turbulent 1960s and the subsequent creation of Chicago West Side Christian School, a “beacon of reconciliation.”

Reviews and endorsements of the publication include:

“If we are to ever build Martin Luther King Jr.’s vision of the ‘beloved community,’ people interested in reconciliation must be willing to truthfully confront past epochs of racial injustice. Growing Pains represents a compelling step in that direction.” —Mark Mulder, author of Shades of White Flight: Evangelical Congregations and Urban Departure

“Chris Meehan has done the dirty work of getting us into the heated church meetings, introducing unsung heroes and she-roes, and beautifully writing the Timothy-Lawndale story with grace and tact. Your crash course on urban race relations in the Christian Reformed Church begins with this book.” —Reggie Smith, director of Christian Reformed Office of Race Relations

“Issues of race always test the church’s commitment to the gospel. Often the result is marred by sin that continues to persist, with progress measured shamefully over far too many years. Meehan tells this story in a forthright, engaging manner, including the faithful efforts of parents of black children and the pastors and teachers who were their prophetic allies. The facts and the drama are real; this painful story is told with clarity, empathy, and truth.” —Wesley Granberg-Michaelson, general secretary emeritus of Reformed Church in America

For more information on the publication, click here.

Fellow travelers are scholars, activists, and practitioners that embody the ideals and commitments of the Project on Lived Theology. We admire their work and are grateful to be walking alongside them in the development and dissemination of Lived Theology.

For more of “On the Lived Theology Reading List,” click here. To engage in the conversation on Facebook and Twitter, @LivedTheology, please use #LivedTheologyReads. For more recommended resources from our fellow travelers, click here, #PLTfellowtravelers. To sign up for the Lived Theology monthly newsletter, click here.

On Lived Theology: AAR’s Reading Religion Reviews PLT Publication

Lived Theology: New Perspectives on Method, Style, and Pedagogy; Charles Marsh; Sarah Azaransky; Peter SladeNewly Released Book Receives Praise

Lived Theology: New Perspectives on Method, Style, and Pedagogy contains the work of an emerging generation of theologians and scholars who pursue research, teaching, and writing as a form of public responsibility motivated by the conviction that theological ideas aspire in their inner logic toward social expression. Written as a two-year collaboration here at the Project on Lived Theology, this volume offers a series of illustrations and styles that distinguish Lived Theology in the broader conversation with other major approaches to the religious interpretation of embodied life.

Reading Religion, the newly launched book review site of the American Academy of Religion, recently reviewed the book, recognizing the work’s unique and valuable contribution to today’s theological inquiry:

“…this diverse work should prove engaging for any theologian interested in practices. It coheres through shared conviction that the lived realities of faith constitute a rich and primary focal point for theological inquiry. Together, the authors illustrate and explore this conviction well… Their diversity provides a broad and engaging introduction to the work of lived theology while gesturing toward a much larger conversation.”

To read the review in its entirety, click here. Find more details on the Lived Theology publication here.

Publication contributors include Sarah AzaranskyJacqueline Bussie, David DarkSusan GlissonJohn de GruchySusan R. HolmanLori Brandt HaleWillis JenkinsWillie James JenningsJohn KiessJennifer M. McBrideMary McClintock Fulkerson, Charles MarshPeter Slade, and Ted Smith.

For more details about the Spring Institute for Lived Theology 2016/2017: Can I Get A Witness? initiative, click here. We also post updates online using #SILT. To get these and other news updates, please like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @LivedTheology. To sign up for the Lived Theology monthly newsletter, click here.

Lived Theology after Charlottesville

All of us at the Project on Lived Theology extend our gratitude for the many expressions of concern and solidarity received since the white supremacy marches on grounds and in Charlottesville. In the coming months, our work building bridges between scholars and practitioners has assumed a new urgency. We look forward to learning from and sharing resources in the conversations and exchanges emerging at UVa, Charlottesville, and around the nation. This statement drafted by our colleagues in the Department of Religious Studies eloquently conveys our renewed mission and purpose going forward.

August 14, 2017

An Open Letter from the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Virginia in Response to the Events of August 11th and 12th

The Department of Religious Studies denounces the violence and terror perpetrated by the gathering of white supremacists in Charlottesville, VA on August 11th and 12th, 2017. As a faculty, we are particularly horrified that our University Grounds were used to promote this agenda and that students, who were exercising their constitutionally protected right to protest, were physically attacked a short distance from their dormitories.

The Department of Religious Studies rejects the white supremacist ideology of intolerance and its practice of hateful speech, as well as the violence it engenders. We stand in solidarity with the victims of these events and with those who courageously resisted the hate groups and their virulent messages; we stand with the community of Charlottesville and with all those at whom hate continues to be directed. We cherish the diversity of our student body and commit ourselves to supporting students who are targeted by hate groups. We promise to be available to students who seek support from us, even as we actively develop new initiatives to support them.

As a department, we advocate for no single religious faith or political point of view. Our faculty comprises scholars who practice different religions or no religion at all. Our professors, all of whom serve the Commonwealth of Virginia, hold a range of political views. Those who are American citizens vote their consciences individually in elections, for a wide array of political parties. Amid this political and national diversity, we stand united in our unanimous and unequivocal condemnation of those who promote hate, by way of violent speech and action—the white supremacists, the neo-Nazis, the neo-Fascists, the anti-Semites. And we regard this condemnation as the expression of a simple, moral truth rather than a political statement.

We must not hesitate to name and condemn the intimidation, terror, and violence that convulsed and profaned our city and university this weekend. We consider the groups who organized and participated in the “Unite the Right” rally to be hate groups. We do not take their views to represent a legitimate, alternative political perspective: they are dangerous, and they perpetuate what is universally condemned by all the world’s religions and ethical systems. We feel morally compelled to call out those who afflicted our community with their night-time mob on the University’s Grounds and with their violence on our city’s streets the following day. Burning torches, aggressive chanting, and racist, homophobic, and antisemitic slogans echo the symbolism, and messages, of Nazi-era Germany and of the Ku Klux Klan in the United States. This is not a time for equivocation. We stand firmly and explicitly against the views and actions of those espousing hate, terror, and violence in Charlottesville over this past weekend, and any other day.