Valarie Kaur, Founder of The Revolutionary Love Project, Civil Rights Activist, and Documentary Filmmaker
Valarie Kaur is a renowned activist, award-winning filmmaker, civil rights lawyer, faith leader, and founder of the Revolutionary Love Project. After Sept. 11, 2001, she began to document hate crimes against Sikh and Muslim Americans, which resulted in the award-winning film Divided We Fall. Since then, she has made films and led story-based campaigns on hate crimes, racial profiling, immigration detention, solitary confinement, marriage equality, and Internet freedom. Today she leads the Revolutionary Love Project to champion love as a force for justice and wellspring for social action. In addition, Valarie is the founder of Groundswell Movement, considered “America’s largest multi-faith online organizing network,” the Yale Visual Law Project, where she trained law students how to make films for social change, and co-founder of Faithful Internet to build the movement for net neutrality. Recognized as a leading Sikh American voice, she has been a senior fellow at Auburn Theological Seminary since 2013. Valarie earned undergraduate degrees in religious studies and international relations at Stanford University, a master’s in theological studies at Harvard Divinity School, where she was a Harvard University presidential scholar, and a J.D. at Yale Law School, where she was a Knight law and media scholar. She is a member of the California Bar.
Parker J. Palmer, Author, Teacher, and Founder and Senior Partner Emeritus of The Center for Courage and Renewal
Parker J. Palmer is a world-renowned writer, speaker, and activist who focuses on issues in education, community, leadership, spirituality, and social change. He has reached millions worldwide through his nine books, including Let Your Life Speak, The Courage to Teach, A Hidden Wholeness, and Healing the Heart of Democracy. He has worked with Newcomer on The Growing Edge, and collaborated with her on three songs that are included in his latest book, On the Brink of Everything: Grace, Gravity, and Getting Old. Parker has also presented before with Valarie on a previous occasion. Palmer has received numerous accolades for his work including the William Rainey Harper Award and being named an Utne Reader Visionary, one of “25 people who are changing your world” in 2011. Parker holds a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of California at Berkeley, as well as 11 honorary doctorates, two Distinguished Achievement Awards from the National Educational Press Association, and an Award of Excellence from the Associated Church Press.A member of the Religious Society of Friends (Quaker), Dr. Palmer and his wife, Sharon Palmer, live in Madison, Wisconsin.
Carrie Newcomer, Award winning Songwriter, Performer, Recording Artist, and Educator
Carrie Newcomer is a performer, recording artist, and educator, described as a “prairie mystic” by the Boston Globe and one who “asks all the right questions” by Rolling Stone. Carrie is the 2019 recipient of the Shalem Institute Contemplative Voices Award and has appeared on PBS’s Religion and Ethics and Krista Tippett’s On Being. In the fall of 2009 and 2011, Newcomer was a cultural ambassador to India resulting in her interfaith collaborative benefit album Everything is Everywhere. In 2012 and 2013 Carrie traveled to Kenya and the Middle East performing in schools, spiritual communities, and AIDS hospitals. Carrie has 17 nationally released albums on Available Light and Rounder Records, two books of poetry and essays, and a theatrical production, Betty’s Diner: The Musical. Goshen College awarded her an honorary degree in Music for Social Change in 2016. She regularly works with Parker J. Palmer in live programs and on The Growing Edge, a website, podcast, and retreat. Spirituality and Health Magazine named The Growing Edge collaboration as one of the top ten spiritual leaders and programs for the next 20 years. Carrie lives in the woods of southern Indiana with her husband and two shaggy dogs.
Richard J. Mouw, Philosopher, Scholar, and Author
Richard J. Mouw returned to teaching in the position of professor of faith and public life after 20 years as president of Fuller Theological Seminary (1993–2013). A philosopher, scholar, and author, prior to his two decades as president, he served as provost and senior vice president for four years, and as professor of Christian philosophy and ethics beginning in 1985. Before coming to Fuller he served for 17 years as professor of philosophy at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He has also served as a visiting professor at the Free University in Amsterdam. Mouw has a broad record of publication, including seventeen books, has been an editor of the Reformed Journal and serves on the editorial board of Books and Culture.
Christy Vines, President and CEO, Ideos Institute
Christy Vines is a California-based conflict expert and the President and CEO of the Ideos Institute. Her work and expertise lie at the intersection of faith, social/cultural polarization, and conflict transformation. She is also an early contributor to the burgeoning space of empathic intelligence. Vines is a published writer and speaker. She has served as an expert and advisor to faith, corporate and public leaders in and outside of the U.S. She has a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government and a B.A. in Sociology with an emphasis in quantitative analysis.
NOTE: The conference will be offered via Zoom. All times are Eastern U.S. Registration deadline: May 17th
|Mon., May 24, 2021 - Poetics of Community Healing|
|12:30-1:00 p.m.||Opening Worship with Liddy Barlow|
Workshop with Valarie Kaur: “The Labor of Revolutionary Love"
"The future is dark. Is this darkness of the tomb—or the darkness of the womb?" Valarie Kaur reframes the present moment in history as one of transition and calls on us to show up in the labor of birthing a new future. Her message has inspired millions of people around the globe. In this workshop, she will equip us with tools for how to practice Revolutionary Love in our lives and in our movements for social justice. When in your life have you experienced the beloved community, the world as it ought to be? What has it felt like in your body? Come for inspiration, transformation, and solidarity.
|3:00-4:30 p.m.||Session 1 Workshops: “Using The Arts to Do Inner and Outer Work for Community and Healing" (See Workshops tab for more details.)|
|5:00-6:30 p.m.||"Finding Common Ground for the Common Good" presentation with Richard Mouw and Christy Vines|
"See No Stranger: Revolutionary Love as the Call of Our Times"
Henderson Lecture on Church and Ministry with Valarie Kaur
FREE AND OPEN TO PUBLIC with registration.
|Tues., May 25, 2021 - Logics of Community Healing|
|12:30-1:00 p.m.||Opening Worship|
|1:00-2:30 p.m.||Keynote Presentation with Parker J. Palmer "Cultivating the Courage to Stand and Act in the “Tragic Gap”|
|3:00-4:30 p.m.||Workshop Session: “Using History and Skills To Do Inner and Outer Work for Community and Healing” (See Workshop tab for more details.)|
|5:00-6:30 p.m.||Dinner Interest Groups (Optional)|
Shared Keynote Presentation with Carrie Newcomer and Parker J. Palmer "What We Need Is Here: Hope, Hard Times and The Human Possibility"
Join Carrie and Parker in a dynamic interweaving of music, poetry, prose, personal story, and audience participation. This song and spoken word event will address our yearning for a way to understand and respond to the hard times we are living in, moving beyond our sense of powerlessness by activating the powers of the human heart and the human community.
|8:30-8:45p.m||Closing Prayer and Farewells|
Registration and Fees
Deadline: May 20, 2021
The above link is for the Henderson Lecture with Valarie Kaur ONLY. If you wish to attend the full conference, please use the link below. We ask that you consider lecture only option if you cannot attend the entire conference since registration for that event is limited. Thank you!
Registration for the conference is now closed.
We are offering the conference using a grace economics model so that all who wish to participate have a greater opportunity to do so.
$100 This fee will include receipt of Valarie Kaur's book, Revolutionary Love, with an author-signed bookplate.
$50 Use promo code: 50HSLC
$25 Use promo code: 25HSLC
No Cost Use promo code: 0HSLC
The conference will be available to a limited number of registrants, so please enroll soon!
DIRECTIONS / CEUs / QUESTIONS
Details about accessing the conference online platform will be sent to registrants the week of May 17th. A reminder with the Zoom link will be sent on the morning of May 24th and May 25th as well.
CEUs are available for clergy upon request. Conference registration is required. To receive a certificate, E-mail ConEd@pts.edu.
E-mail ConEd@pts.edu or call 412-924-1345.
Each workshop will have its own Zoom link so you can join the one that most interests you on each day. We will e-mail links to all registrants for the workshops as the conference date approaches. Descriptions of each workshop can be found here.
Using The Arts to Do Inner and Outer Work for Community and Healing ~ Monday, May 24, 2021
We Lift Our Voice: Building Communities for Social Change Through Song with Charon Hribar
Start Close In:The Arts and Life In Process with Carrie Newcomer
Prays Well With Others: Confessions of an Interfaith Leader Using Film to Save His Community with Skyler Oberst
Using History and Skills To Do Inner and Outer Work for Community and Healing ~ May 25, 2021
Myths of Polarization: Reframing Difference and Conflict for the Work of the Church with Melissa Florer-Bixler
Bridges Without Compromise: Practical Tools for Bringing Peace to a Polarized World with Justin Lee
Another Way to Lead with Stephen Lewis and Dori Grinenko Baker
Discovering Our “Theologies of Conflict” with Leah D. Schade
Dori Grinenko Baker describes herself as a spy for hope. She is an educator, scholar, and facilitator who focuses on feminist theologies, young adult culture, leadership development, and spiritual practices that sustain activism. She serves as the senior fellow at the Forum for Theological Exploration, is the co-founder of The Listening: Freedom School in Lynchburg, Va., and is an ordained United Methodist elder in the Virginia Annual Conference. Baker’s first career as a journalist led to seminary, ordination, and a Ph.D. in religious studies. Her scholarship centers spiritual formation and emphasizes cultural studies, critical race theory, ethnography, and vocation. Her most recent book (co-authored by Stephen Lewis and Matthew Wesley Williams) is Another Way: Living and Leading Change on Purpose (Chalice Press, 2020). The second edition of her book Doing Girlfriend Theology: God-Talk with Young Women will be released in 2021. See her website for more information.
Melissa Florer-Bixler is the pastor of Raleigh Mennonite Church, and a graduate of Duke University and Princeton Theological Seminary. She spent times studying in Israel/Palestine, Kenya, and England. Much of her formation took place in the L'Arche community of Portland, Ore. Now she prefers the Eno River and her garden in Raleigh, N. Car. She is the chair of L'Arche North Carolina and a steering committee member in broad-based organizing in her county. Melissa's writing has appeared in Christian Century, Sojourners, Geez, Anabaptist Witness, The Bias, Faith & Leadership, and Anabaptist Vision. From time to time she publishes academic writing.
Dr. Charon Hribar is the director of cultural strategies for the Kairos Center and co-director of theomusicology and movement arts for the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival. She holds a master's of divinity from Union Theological Seminary and a Ph.D. in religion and society from Drew University. Over the past 15 years, Hribar has been dedicated to the work of political education, leadership development, and fostering the use of arts and culture for movement building with community and religious leaders across the country. Through her work with the Poor People’s Campaign, Hribar has developed cultural resources to help leaders on the ground integrate arts and culture into their organizing work, including the We Rise Movement Songbook and the Justseeds’ Poor People’s Campaign Art Portfolio.
Justin Lee has been an influential Christian voice for LGBTQ affirmation, best known for working across areas of theological disagreement to promote grace and mutual understanding for the past two decades. He is the founder of the world’s largest LGBTQ Christian advocacy organization, the author of two books, and an internationally known speaker on faith, sexuality, and dialogue. Justin’s first book, Torn: Rescuing the Gospel from the Gays-vs.-Christians Debate, has been widely cited for its role in changing conservative Christians’ attitudes and helping Christian parents accept their LGBTQ kids. His newest book, Talking Across the Divide, offers strategies for having more productive conversations on controversial issues in a polarized society. Justin lives in Orlando, Florida, where he currently serves as the executive director of Nuance Ministries. He makes humorous videos on the Bible and other topics on his YouTube channel and blogs at GeekyJustin.com.
Stephen Lewis is the president of the Forum for Theological Exploration, which focuses on cultivating a new generation of Christian leaders. He is an organizational change strategist and facilitator and a leadership development specialist focused on helping leaders to discover their purpose, passion, and calling in life. Stephen is also the creator of DO GOOD X, a start-up accelerator for diverse, Christian entrepreneurs launching social good ventures to address our world’s greatest problems. In 2020, he co-authored (with Matthew Wesley Williams and Dori Grinenko Baker) Another Way: Living and Leading Change on Purpose.
Carrie Newcomer is a performer, recording artist, and educator, described as a “prairie mystic” by the Boston Globe and one who “asks all the right questions” by Rolling Stone. Carrie is the 2019 recipient of the Shalem Institute Contemplative Voices Award and has appeared on PBS’s Religion and Ethics and Krista Tippett’s On Being. In the fall of 2009 and 2011, Newcomer was a cultural ambassador to India resulting in her interfaith collaborative benefit album Everything is Everywhere. In 2012 and 2013 Carrie traveled to Kenya and the Middle East performing in schools, spiritual communities, and AIDS hospitals. Carrie has 17 nationally released albums on Available Light and Rounder Records, two books of poetry and essays, and a theatrical production, Betty’s Diner: The Musical. Goshen College awarded her an honorary degree in Music for Social Change in 2016. She regularly works with Parker J. Palmer in live programs and on The Growing Edge, a website, podcast, and retreat. Spirituality and Health Magazine named The Growing Edge collaboration as one of the top ten spiritual leaders and programs for the next 20 years.
Skyler Oberst is a millennial interfaith expert who has been working with civic and community leaders in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States for more than ten years. While at university, Skyler has contributed to the Millennial Values project at the Berkeley Center for Peace, Politics and Religion at Georgetown University, and worked for the Pluralism Project at Harvard University. Focusing on the intersectionality of young people, technology and faith, Skyler was named a Germanacos Fellow for young innovative interfaith leaders through the Interfaith Youth Core, where he sought to build tools for communities to explore their religious landscape and more easily collaborate across faith lines. Skyler’s work in interfaith engagement expanded after he developed his groundbreaking and award-winning video-series Meet the Neighbors which uses a unique mix of interactive social media and community events to foster collaboration and community building. Currently, he is a Voices of Renewal Fellow for the State of Formation, a Leadership Development Program for Emerging Religious and Ethical Leaders sponsored by Hebrew College and Boston University’s School of Theology. He also does interfaith and intercultural dialogue work for organizations like the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change.
The Rev. Dr. Leah D. Schade is the assistant professor of preaching and worship at Lexington Theological Seminary in Lexington, Ky. An ordained minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America for 20 years, Schade earned both her M.Div. and Ph.D. degrees from the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia (now United Lutheran Seminary). She has pastored three Pennsylvania congregations in suburban, urban, and rural contexts. Her book, Preaching in the Purple Zone: Ministry in the Red-Blue Divide (Rowman & Littlefield, 2019), explores how clergy and congregations can address controversial social issues using nonpartisan, biblically-centered approaches and deliberative dialogue. She is also the author of Creation-Crisis Preaching: Ecology, Theology, and the Pulpit (Chalice Press, 2015), co-editor with Margaret Bullitt-Jonas of Rooted and Rising: Voices of Courage in a Time of Climate Crisis (Rowman & Littlefield, 2019), and co-author with Jerry Sumney of Apocalypse When? A Guide to Interpreting and Preaching Apocalyptic Texts. Schade has been a featured speaker for the Festival of Homiletics, leads workshops and retreats, and keynotes events throughout the country. She is the director of a Wabash grant exploring the use of deliberative dialogue in congregations and theological education. Schade received the Kentucky Council of Churches Award in 2019 and is the EcoPreacher blogger for Patheos. Schade is conducting a longitudinal research study about ministry, preaching, and social issues that has surveyed nearly 3,000 clergy and 1,000 laity since 2017. She is also co-founder of the Clergy Emergency League, a network of nearly 2,500 pastors throughout the U.S. who provide support, accountability, resources, and networking for clergy to prophetically minister in their congregations and the public square in this time of political upheaval, social unrest, and partisan division.