The 2014 Craigville Theological Colloquy
Monday July 14th through Friday July 18th
“Creation as Theology & Ecology”
- Precis: In confronting the challenge climate change poses to all life, people of faith can and must bring both unique and essential responses. If life as we have known it for at least 100,000 years is to have continuity going forward, humanity needs to muster a massive reorientation of our moral compass. In the past, less demanding moral reorientation has only been possible when religious leaders have both articulated a vision and illuminated a path. We must draw upon the Noahic covenant to expand the Golden Rule to include all things alive today AND in the future. We must offer an understanding of and experience of spiritual progress that is sufficiently satisfying that people in first world can abandon material gain as the sole measure of progress. This challenge is calling upon our generation to re-purpose the church – or to put it another way, that the church needs a new vocation if we are to faithfully accomplish these and other essential ends. With a new vocation, certain behaviors and commitments would become normative expressions of Christian discipleship. Civil disobedience, divestment from fossil fuel companies and a commitment to a simple lifestyle are three such exemplary behaviors. With a new vocation, Christians would respond to the inconsolable grief of the world with generative hope – as exemplified by the prophet Jeremiah (Chapter 32).
- Keynoter: The Rev. Dr. Jim Antal, Executive Minister & President, Massachusetts Conference, United Church of Christ
- Bible Reflection: Ms. Jane Ellingwood, PhD Candidate, Theology and Religion, University of Exeter (England) and Hartford Seminary
WHAT IS COLLOQUY?
For 30 years, the Colloquy has offered a unique opportunity for pastors, teachers, seminarians and laity to gather for a week in theological conversation and Bible reflection while engaging a subject of importance. Open to members of any denomination, the Colloquy is an experience that feeds the mind and heart: keynote presentations, workshops, small-group conversation and daily Bible reflection help the community explore the subject in depth. In addition, two ecumenical celebrations of Holy Communion, daily Morning Prayer in a meditative style, Taizé Vespers and the use of sacred music inspire with praise and song. Colloquy is also an opportunity to relax with friends and family: afternoons are free time to explore the Cape, take walks through the woods, or while away the hours on Craigville Beach.
The Colloquy, in keeping with its long tradition, provides the opportunity for serious theological reflection along with practical application. There are up to 3 CE units available.
“Clergy and laity from across the Northeast and Midwest come back again and again to Craigville because it’s an experience that combines intellectual inquiry with rest for the body, mind and soul,” says the Rev. Claudia Demick, planning committee chair. “It combines the elements of a theological conference, a spiritual retreat, and a summer vacation. In a church that’s increasingly hungry for intellectual and spiritual nourishment, the Colloquy has a lot to offer.”
The colloquy has been held every summer since 1984 at the Craigville Retreat Center – a ministry of the Massachusetts Conference, United Church of Christ. The quiet village includes Victorian cottages, a village green, and the historic Tabernacle, a simple 19th-century meeting house where Colloquy participants will gather for worship, presentations and workshops. Check out the Colloquy setting at Craigville Retreats: craigvilleretreats.org.