REGISTRATION IS OPEN!

2022 THEOLOGY & PEACE GATHERING

AT THE FRONTIERS OF MIMESIS & SPIRIT

NOVEMBER 14-17, SCARRITT BENNETT CENTER, NASHVILLE

Sessions and topics include:

  • REUNION DINNER, Monday night at Scarritt Bennett.
  • CINEMA DIVINA: RED JOAN (2018).
  • A discussion of JULIA ROBINSON MOORE’s “The Frontier of Race in Mimetic Theory: American Lynchings and Racial Violence.
  • A discussion of ANTHONY BARTLETT’S, Signs of Change: The Bible’s Evolution of Divine Nonviolence (2022).
  • REBECCA ADAMS’ reflection on RAYMUND SCHWAGER.
  • VISIT to THISTLE FARMS.
  • A FIELD TRIP to one of the historic sites in DOWNTOWN NASHVILLE.
  • An evening out at the HONKY TONKS on Broadway!
  • A session for sharing our individual and collective endeavors during the pandemic years.
  • WORSHIP SERVICE commemorating what we have lost and all we have yet to hope for.
  • A VISION SESSION: How do we, THEOLOGY & PEACE, being informed by RENÉ GIRARD‘s MIMETIC THEORY and inspired by the HOLY SPIRIT, envision our role amidst the crises of contagion gripping our planet?
  • MIND & BODY EXERCISE for relaxation and restoration.
  • DAILY CENTERING PRAYER.
  • ALL MEALS, Monday dinner through Thursday morning breakfast (except for dinner Wednesday night during our Honky Tonk excursion).

ALL SESSIONS & MEALS at SCARRITT BENNETT (online or in person): FREE! Made possible by a generous grant from RAVEN FOUNDATION.

OVERNIGHT LODGING at SCARRITT BENNET: $255 PAYABLE TO THEOLOGY & PEACE. Includes three nights in a private room that shares a bathroom with one adjoining room. (SEE PAYPAL BUTTON BELOW)

Those who would like to request a discount for lodging, please indicate this when you register below. Discounts will be awarded from the portion of the RAVEN grant that remains unused (only if a surplus remains).

The THEOLOGY & PEACE GATHERING starts with dinner Monday evening and concludes Thursday at noon.

REGISTER HERE!

OVERNIGHT LODGING

$255.00

QUESTIONS? Email Sue Wright at swright14620@yahoo.com

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Registration Opens September 10th!

IT’S TIME TO GATHER AGAIN! We’re calling all our friends, old and new, to join us for the THEOLOGY & PEACE SUMMIT, NOVEMBER 14-17 in NASHVILLE at the Scarritt Bennett Center–to meet face to face, to share our joys and our concerns, and, in the context of the current world crises, to renew our hopes and ours dreams for the future.

Over the last fifteen years, articulating a theology grounded in René Girard‘s Mimetic Theory, we’ve held conferences in multiple cities and contexts across the United States. In Chicago, we addressed the systemic nature of mass incarceration and the contagion of gun violence involving people and police. In Raleigh, we looked at the history of lynching, and prayed with the organizers of the first Moral Monday occurring on the steps of North Carolina’s capital. In Baltimore we made lasting friendships with Newborn Community, who, inspired by the teachings of René Girard and Gordon Cosby, built multiple ministries in the midst of a neighborhood ravaged by discrimination, poverty, and drugs. In Nashville, we spent two years at American Baptist College, a historically black college, where focused on systemic racism, sex-trafficking, and the life-sentencing of minors, we witnessed first hand what it means to practice solidarity with the victim.

Staying true to our original mission, we have stored up pearls of theological wisdom, we have plumbed the depths of our collective good, and grappled with the reality of our social evils. Understanding that all of us, regardless of our differences, are inherently connected, we attempt to live lives of Ubuntu and Beloved Community. With so many challenges confronting the world and future generations, this work has never been more important. JOIN US as we continue to tap the wellspring of inspiration rising out of René Girard’s understanding of what it means to be human beings constructed by our shared desires. Who knows where the Spirit will lead us next

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2022 THEOLOGY & PEACE SUMMIT!

NOVEMBER 14-17th at the Scarritt Bennett Center in Nashville, Tennessee.

The 2022 Theology & Peace Summit is sponsored by THE RAVEN FOUNDATION.

This gathering will be a significant event! Given the war in Ukraine, the political polarization in the United States, and the environmental threat to all life on the planet, the work of THEOLOGY & PEACE has never been more important. PLEASE STAY TUNED! We hope to gather as many folks as we can! We wholeheartedly encourage our COV&R friends to participate!

We’ll do serious work during the day, then relax and enjoy each others’ company in the evenings!

PLEASE JOIN US! https://theologyandpeace.com

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JOIN the THEOLOGY & PEACE SOCIAL HOUR FOR “MIMESIS AT THE MOVIES” every other Thursday at 4PM ET on Zoom!

Jenny Brizard in “Sinking Ship”

August 12: SINKING SHIP 2021 short film by Sasha Leigh Henry A couple’s night out turns into a frank conversation about the state of their relationship. It’s clear the ship is sinking and it’s every man for himself. Former T&P board member and conference presenter, Sereta Richardson, who also recommended this film, will join us for this discussion.

“Sinking Ship” is the winner of the 2021 Staff Pick Award at Aspen Shortsfest. Read Vimeo’s Q&A with director Sasha Leigh Henry here: vimeo.com/blog/post/sinking-ship-sasha-leigh-henry-staff-pick-award

View it on Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/535667880?fbclid=IwAR3k59vWPVboWkeP7n2FuhPAzVFy_6209-iqb8phX1gEJ5MEx4xtShwExM0

August 26: “The Perfect Mate,” STAR TREK THE NEXT GENERATION S5 E21 (April 25,1992) Ferengi machinations unleash a diplomatic gift aboard the Enterprise – the rare, empathic perfect mate, ready to bond with any male around her. This episode helped to inspire Rebecca Adams’ model of “loving mimesis.”

For more info: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0708818/ Available on Prime Video.

Join us for a casual online discussion every other Thursday at 4:00 PM ET. For a Zoom link, please RSVP Sue Wright at swright14620@yahoo.com or go to our Facebook Discussion Page.

We welcome suggestions of films or topics for future discussions!

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Revised Schedule for Discussion Series “Mimesis at the Movies”

Every other Thursday at 4:00 EST we will gather for our regular social time. At 4:30 we will discuss one of the films we’ve chosen. We recommend you watch it in advance. Scroll down for revised scheduled.

OUR UPCOMING SCHEDULE:

June 17th: Postcards From Babylon A long-form documentary featuring author and pastor, Brian Zahnd, as he investigates possibly the most important question for the church in North America today: How does the church stay faithful to the way of Jesus while situated in one of the most divisive political climates in our nation’s history? The film argues that Christians seeking proximity to power has led to a hyperpartisan Nationalistic posture that is demonstrably hindering the witness of Christ. For more info: https://www.postcardsdoc.com

July 1st: Ridley Scott’s Bladerunner, which is loosely based on Philip K. Dick‘s 1968 novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? The film is set in a dystopian future Los Angeles of 2019, in which synthetic humans known as replicants are bio-engineered by the powerful Tyrell Corporation to work at space colonies. When a fugitive group of advanced replicants led by Roy Batty (Rutger Hauer) escapes back to Earth, burnt-out cop Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) reluctantly agrees to hunt them down.

July 15th: Two Distinct Strangers A 2020 American short science-fiction drama film written by Travon Free and directed by Free and Martin Desmond Roe. The film examines the deaths of black Americans during encounters with police through the eyes of a character trapped in a time loop that keeps ending in his death. Oscar Winner for Best Live Action Short. For more info: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt13472984/

July 29th: The Present A 2020 short film directed by Farah Nabulsi and co-written by Nabulsi and Hind Shoufani, about a father and daughter in the Palestinian enclaves of the Israeli-occupied West Bank trying to buy a wedding anniversary gift. The cast is led by Palestinian actor Saleh Bakri. It was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film. For more info: https://www.nativeliberty.org/production/the-present

For a Zoom link, please RSVP Sue Wright at swright14620@yahoo.com or go to our Facebook Discussion Page.

We welcome suggestions of films or topics for future discussions!

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REGISTER FOR THE COV&R CONFERENCE!

Theology & Peace will not host a conference this year, but we have another opportunity to gather. If you enjoyed last year’s COLLABORATORS’ CONFERENCE, I recommend this year’s COV&R ONLINE CONFERENCE, “Desiring Machines: Robots, Mimesis, and Violence in the Age of AI,” July 7-10, hosted by Purdue University. This is a chance to see your Theology & Peace friends while also participating in an international community dedicated to the application of Mimetic Theory across a wide range of fields and disciplines. I promise, there is something for everyone! REGISTRATION IS OPEN!

Welcome to the 31st annual meeting of the Colloquium on Violence and Religion. Founded in 1990, COV&R is an international association of scholars and practitioners devoted to exploring, critiquing, and developing the mimetic theory of René Girard. Girard’s ideas regarding imitative desire, sacrifice, scapegoating, and violence have been elaborated in literary studies, anthropology, sociology, psychology, philosophy, economics, film studies, political science, religious studies, Biblical studies, and, in general, all fields of the humanities and social sciences. In our conference this year, we would like to expand that body of thinking to examine aspects of the field of artificial intelligence and, in particular, robotics and self-awareness. We invite papers from all fields in which Girard’s insights have proved seminal but especially those that would explore some of the newer challenges posed by recent and ongoing technological innovations.

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Join Theology & Peace Social Hour for “Mimesis at the Movies”

Every other Thursday at 4:00 EST, we will gather for our regular social time. At 4:30 we will discuss one of the films we’ve chosen. We recommend you watch it in advance.

OUR UPCOMING SCHEDULE:

May 20th: Promising Young Woman Traumatized by recent events, including the death of her best friend, Cassie seeks justice. Is this a straight up revenge fantasy? To what extent does she succeed in exposing the mechanisms underpinning systemic misogyny? Written and directed by Emerald Fennell and starring Carrie Mulligan. Oscar winner for best screen play. [Warning: the film contains graphic content.] For more info: https://www.focusfeatures.com/promising-young-woman/

June 3rd: Postcards From Babylon A long-form documentary featuring author and pastor, Brian Zahnd, as he investigates possibly the most important question for the church in North America today: How does the church stay faithful to the way of Jesus while situated in one of the most divisive political climates in our nation’s history? The film argues that Christians seeking proximity to power has led to a hyperpartisan Nationalistic posture that is demonstrably hindering the witness of Christ. For more info: https://www.postcardsdoc.com

June 17th: Two Distinct Strangers A 2020 American short science-fiction drama film written by Travon Free and directed by Free and Martin Desmond Roe. The film examines the deaths of black Americans during encounters with police through the eyes of a character trapped in a time loop that keeps ending in his death. Oscar Winner for Best Live Action Short. For more info: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt13472984/

July 1st: The Present A 2020 short film directed by Farah Nabulsi and co-written by Nabulsi and Hind Shoufani, about a father and daughter in the Palestinian enclaves of the Israeli-occupied West Bank trying to buy a wedding anniversary gift. The cast is led by Palestinian actor Saleh Bakri. It was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film. For more info: https://www.nativeliberty.org/production/the-present

For a Zoom link, please RSVP Sue Wright at swright14620@yahoo.com or go to our Facebook Discussion Page.

We welcome suggestions of films or topics for future discussions!

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Let’s Kick Start a Campaign for Loving Mimesis! #LoveContagion

“Spread Love, Not Germs”

With the election just weeks away, many are worried about the possibility of violence and unrest. During a recent Theology & Peace Social Hour we compiled a list of resources and ways to prepare. Mimetic Theory helps us understand the nature of rivalry and its violent contagion. Let’s put those insights to positive use by preparing in advance various ways we can de-escalate violence. For instance, we encourage you to share examples of loving mimesis you have experienced personally or seen in the media. Feel free to post to the Theology & Peace Facebook page! Use #LoveContagion.

A new list of resources:

Books:

Online Resources:

More ways to get involved:

Questions and concerns that we want to bring to the table:

  • How do compassion and accountability go together?
  • How can we bring up the problem of accusation, without being dismissed as defending the white racist structures?
  • We all need training and spiritual practices similar to the Christian Peacemaker training. 
  • What can we accomplish in time for November 3rd?
  • What creative tactics can help us dismantle the escalation and the media propaganda? Therapy llama ‘Caesar the No Drama Llama’ calms tensions at protests
  • Where do you see loving mimesis happening in these days? 
  • How can we facilitate meetings between police and African American leaders, like the one that recently occurred in in York County, PA?
  • How can we learn to know one another across lines of tension?

Finally, we want to amplify stories of loving mimesis:

  • We ask that everyone share examples of loving mimesis you have experienced personally or have encountered in the media. 
  • Please join in amplifying public awareness of these stories by sharing on your social media accounts.
  • We invite you to post them on the Theology & Peace Facebook page and on Twitter, in both cases using the Hashtag #LoveContagion
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Vern Neufeld Redekop has graciously agreed to share his work with us. It could not be more timely!

Vern Neufeld Redekop, PhD, is Professor Emeritus of Conflict Studies at Saint Paul University, Ottawa, Canada. He is a prior presenter for the Theology & Peace Conference and a long time member of the Colloquium on Violence & Religion. He has written extensively on René Girard and the implications of Mimetic Theory for peace studies, for police reform, for conflict reconciliation and community building. He and his wife, Gloria, have recently published a book, which you may purchase. See the discount code below.

A pdf of Vern’s book From Violence to Blessing: open

  • Chapters 3 and 4 are on Girard.
  • Chapter 8 develops mimetic structures of violence and entrenchment.
  • Chapter 12 includes an account from Rebecca on how she discovers Loving Mimesis and develops mimetic structures of blessing and transcendence.
  • The correct graphic for the chapter on Ethnonationalism.

An occasional paper from 1993, “Scapegoats, the Bible, and Criminal Justice”
Interacting with René Girard” is included. It is there that Vern develops Girard’s concepts of violence of indifferentiation and violence of differentiation and introduce blessing of differentiation and blessing of indifferentiation.

A link to the article on Rebecca Adams by Matthew Taylor in which he challenges Loving Mimesis Girardian scholars to come up with more examples: https://www.academia.edu/38790661/Rebecca_Adams_Model_of_Loving_Mimesis_An_Overview_and_Assessment_Draft_?email_work_card=view-paper

Flyer for Awakening: Exploring Spirituality, Emergent Creativity, and Reconciliation is attached: open 
The book that Gloria and I just submitted for publication is the sequel: Transforming: Applying Spirituality, Emergent Creativity, and Reconciliation.

YouTube Lectures of Vern Neufeld Redekop:

Getting people out of their silos to work creatively on shared peacebuilding goals: https://link.growkudos.com/1s3p25mopa8

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Reserve Your Spot for our Online Summit! Aug 10-14

THEOLOGY & PEACE & RAVEN FOUNDATION host the first annual COLLABORATORS CONFERENCE FOR THE FLOURISHING OF NONVIOLENT CHRISTIANITY!

 This conference is an event fostering LEARNING, EMPOWERMENT, and COMMUNITY…and is now an online summit! Scroll down for details. #ColCon2020

The event is AUGUST 10-14. Mark your calendars and reserve your spots!  TICKETS are available now! 🎟

Spots are limited, so click here to purchase your tickets ASAP.

Highlights include an on-demand screening of the documentary J.E.S.U.S.A. and a concert performance from Raven Award-winner Audrey Assad

Keynote speakers include:

➡️ Award-winning filmmaker, author, and educator, and the director of the documentary J.E.S.U.S.A., Kevin Miller

➡️ Christian author & educator, who teaches at the Tennessee Prison for Women, Charles Bass Correctional Facility, Belmont University, David Dark

➡️ Historian, author, and religious scholar, Julia Robinson Moore

The Conference also includes a series of workshops, Q&As, panels, and supplemental materials to help you take what you discover and learn back to your communities and implement real, lasting change. Your ticket includes lifetime access to the keynote presentations, educational materials, and more!

We look forward to seeing you at the conference! Together we can work toward a nonviolent world. ❤️

Spots are limited, so CLICK HERE to purchase your tickets ASAP.

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