Liturgy as a Lens on Public Theology: Day of Common Learning 2019
At the campuswide Day of Common Learning this fall, the SPU campus explored the connections between heart and service, liturgy and life. Can worship re-center us in the biblical story and re-shape our public witness? Can “habits of the heart” orient us closer to God’s desire for a flourishing creation?
The annual, all-day event on Oct. 16, featured an opening keynote from James K.A. Smith, professor of philosophy at Calvin College in Michigan and editor-in-chief of Image journal which is housed on the SPU campus. Smith is an award-winning author and speaker, a prolific writer and thinker known for building bridges between the worlds of university, society, and church. The title of his talk: “Practicing the Prophetic: Liturgy as a Lens on Public Theology.”
“Our social and political imagination, what we hope for in public, is at risk of being misshaped by cultural liturgies that are at odds with the gospel and the biblical vision of shalom.”
“Our social and political imagination, what we hope for in public, is at risk of being misshaped by cultural liturgies that are at odds with the gospel and the biblical vision of shalom,” Smith warned. Building on the Hebrew word for peace or wholeness, he hopes the day deepened SPU’s intentionality with its “rhythms, rituals, and practices.”
Following Smith’s talk, breakout sessions led by the SPU community (including faculty and staff) explored the unique perspectives on the concept of shalom as it relates to public theology and liturgy.