Climate Change and the Religious Response
All faith traditions share a common concern to care for the most vulnerable in our communities and our world, and a calling to care for creation. Climate change and its impacts disproportionately affect those who contribute the least to the problem, including our children and future generations. The Rev. Susan Guy, executive director of Iowa Interfaith Power & Light and an ordained Disciples of Christ clergy, will share information about climate change and its impacts, and lead participants in an exploration of how clergy can be more prophetic on the topic of climate change and its social justice consequences.
Justification and Justice
The law/gospel distinction is an essential element in Lutheran preaching. Luther’s treatise on Christian freedom can keep the distinction clear and keep our proclamation from descending into just another to-do list for better Christian living. Ken Jones, Professor and Chair of Theology and Philosophy at Grand View University, will help participants understand the relationship between faith and good works, how they appear in the scriptures, how they inform our lives, and how these categories make for vibrant preaching.
Dog Eating Chicken: Speaking the gospel with youth
What’s that? A dog eating chicken? Or did you mean a dog-eating chicken? It’s funny how even when we speak the same language, we have to learn to communicate in a way that makes sense to the people we are talking to. Anne Williams, Minister for Youth & Families at Holy Trinity Lutheran in Ankeny, and the Practice Discipleship Coach for the Southeastern Iowa Synod, will explore what it means to share a Gospel message that makes sense to youth. Participants will explore ways they might take an old language of faith and translate it into a youth-friendly way of sharing the story. Participants will also spend some time learning how to teach youth to share their own stories of faith in a way that speaks to their peers.
Created and Creating
Many Christians understand creationism, but what about the possibility that evolution is an expression of God’s creativity? Evolutionary theory may be exactly the scientific evocation Christians need to understand the complex nature of divine creativity, the wonder of human evolution, and the beauty of animal kinship. Nancy R. Howell, Professor of Theology and Philosophy of Religion at Saint Paul School of Theology in Kansas City, will facilitate reflection on the value of science-religion dialogue for the church and community, as well as the power of primate studies as a goad for deeper theological reflection. The forum will meet at the Iowa Primate Learning Sanctuary as a way of embodying the quest for theological creativity.