Tuesday, June 13

Movement One:  the church gathers … in the face of violence

As we gather, we bring the gifts and concerns of the communities from which we have come, and we lift up the needs of all.

10:00am​​ - Morning Prayer and Introduction to the Conference

  • Dorothy Bass, When Dancing Turns to Mourning: Reflections on the Theme
  • Maggi Dawn, The Church Gathers in the Face of violence

12:00 pm - Lunch Break

1:00pm - Plenary: Congregations Tell Their Stories

Three congregations from different settings and traditions report on their ministries in worship and the arts and invite others in attendance to consider their own as well.

Movement Two:  the church sings …  in the face of violence

How has the music of the church resisted violence, voiced lament, and formed worshipers in ways of peace?  How can, and how does, the church today sing with power, beauty, and reverence, even in the face of violence?

3:00pmPlenary: Lifelong Formation through Song            

  • James Abbington, Music of Endurance, Resistance, and Hope
  • Beverly Lapp, Mennonite Singing Practices and Formation in Non-violence
  • Don Saliers, The Church Sings the Psalms

5:30pm - Catered Supper

7:30pm - Hymn Festival: “How Can I Keep from Singing?”
We gather in Marquand Chapel for an evening of hymns and meditations, led by organist, composer, and conductor John Ferguson, together with a choir, other musicians, and the conference faculty. This event is open to the public.

Wednesday, June 14

Movement Three: the church intercedes … in the face of violence

Violence erupts, violence persists; and the church turns again and again to God in prayer.  Prayer comes in many forms, including lament and sighs too deep for words.  What language shall we borrow?  What silence?  What song?

9:00am - Morning Prayer

9:30am - Plenary:  Singing Our Prayer—Lament, Entreaty, Doubt, Rage

  • Tony Alonso

10:45am - Break

11:00am - Plenary: Does the Bible Justify Violence?

  • John J. Collins, Holmes Professor of Old Testament Criticism and Interpretation, Yale University

12:30pm - Lunch Break

2:00pm - Afternoon at Grace Farms (Bus transportation provided)
Grace Farms Foundation supports initiatives in the areas of nature, arts, justice, community, and faith at an 80-acre property in New Canaan, CT, whose centerpiece is the “River” building designed by SANAA architects.  It is also the home of Grace Community Church.

3:00pm - Presentation by Grace Farms staff on how their work addresses issues of violence and vulnerable communities

4:00pm - Attend rehearsal of the “Practicing Silence” workshop
Discussion with staff about the artistic process as dialogical space with faith, theology and issues of justice

5:00pm - Conversation in Grace Farms library

5:30pm - Dinner with staff and artists

6:30pm - Conversation with Don Saliers                            

7:45pm - Bus transportation back to New Haven

Thursday, June 15

Movement Four: the church proclaims the gospel … in the face of violence

Every minister encounters moments that demand the proclamation of the gospel after specific incidents of violent death. Moreover, congregations as a whole are called to witness to the gospel, even when violence draws near.  Where might we find the words we need?  How might we discern what actions will witness to God’s presence in such times?   

9:00am - Morning Prayer

9:45am - Workshops:

  • Donyelle McCray, Preaching in and into the Eruption of Violence
  • Cheryl Cornish, Proclaiming the Gospel in the Face of Ongoing Violence
  • Sarah Farmer, Youth Ministry in the Face of Violence

12:00pm - Lunch Break

Movement Five:  the church is sent out … in the face of violence

As we prepare to depart, we harvest the insights and questions we will carry back to our own congregations.

1:00pm - Plenary: For the Journey Home: Reflections, Questions, Insights

  • Martin Jean and Dorothy Bass, conveners
  • Teresa Berger, latchnote reflections

3:00pm - Closing Worship

4:00pm - Adjourn