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Fall Meeting 2013

November 1-2, 2013

Changing Culture and 21st Century Theology

Tucson Room at Church Divinity School of the Pacific (CDSP), Berkeley, California


Friday, Nov 1
1:30-2pm - Arrival and Registration
2-5 pm - Discussion Session
5-7 pm - Business Meeting, Social Time, Dinner
7-8:30 pm - Public Lecture, Philip Clayton
    "Transforming Christian Theology"

Saturday, Nov 2
9–9:30 am - Continental Breakfast
9:30 am-noon - Discussion Session


  • What are theological options for 21st century?
  • What does the church need now in the frontier of society?
  • The discussion  occurs in the context of Philip Clayton's book Transforming Chrisitan Theology, which attendees may wish to purchase:

    Philip Clayton, Transforming Christian Theology: For Church and Society, Fortress Press, 2009 (Amazon Link)

    Discussion Session - Friday, Nov 2, 2-5 pm

    Ted Peters, PLTS, Moderating

    Philip Clayton, Claremont School of Theology
        On his book, Transforming Christian Theology: For Church and Society
    Jack Crossley, USC, Respondent

    Mark Richardson, President and Dean, CDSP
        "Transforming Theology at the GTU in Light of the Church’s Changing Mission”
  • How is the theological agenda changing?
  • How should theology function in the changing church's mission?
  • And, what is happening at the GTU and how does it relate to the first two?

  • Public Lecture - Philip Clayton - Friday, Nov 2, 7-8:30 pm

    The situation of the church must affect the theology of the church. Over the last decades many theologians have looked down disdainfully on the slings and arrows of actual church life: the growing denominational divides, the church growth movement, culturally-sensitive missiology, the revolution in youth ministry, the interfaith movement, the Emergent Church. The style of academic theology that I was trained in and practiced has failed to assist the American church as it has faced the greatest crisis in its history; it has not come to the aid of pastors on the frontlines who are reinventing what it is to be church.

    But it’s not too late to find ways of doing Christian reflection and action that break out of the old mold, ways that are helpful to church and society. Meeting with Emergent groups around the country, I have seen a hunger for discussions that are authentic, open, probing, and honest. In our absence, they are reinventing theology in a new key. In the Friday evening lecture, I move from these concrete examples to a vision for a transforming and transformative Christian theology. Church — Christian community — is happening all around us. Will we be a part of it?

    Philip Clayton is Ingraham Professor at Claremont School of Theology. He received the PhD from Yale University and previously held posts at Williams College and the California State University, as well as guest professorships at the University of Munich, the University of Cambridge, and Harvard University.

    Clayton has been a leading advocate for interreligious dialogue, comparative theologies, and the internationalization of the science-religion dialogue.  As a Christian theologian, Clayton has been deeply involved in the emerging church movement, speaking and writing about the evolving understanding of Christian faith in the 21st century and new ways of being and becoming church. His constructive work grows out of Jesus’ radical way of compassion and a kenotic Christology (Phil. 2).

    Clayton has authored or edited some 22 books. Among his recent works are Religion and Science: The Basics; Transforming Christian Theology: For Church and Society; Adventures in the Spirit: God, World, Divine Action, and The Predicament of Belief: Science, Philosophy, Faith.

    Discussion Session - Saturday, Nov 3, 9:30 am-noon

    Malcolm Young, Christ Episcopal Church in Los Altos, Moderating

    Mark Scandrette, ReIMAGINE!: A Center for Integral Christian Practice
                                (ReIMAGINE facebook page)
        He will draw upon portions of his book, Practicing the Way of Jesus, InterVarsity Press, 2011. (Amazon Link) If you do not have time to read the entire book, please read the introduction and chapters 1-6.

    Rick Fabian, All Saints Company, "Making Baptism Our Sign" (doc, pdf)