April 19 – 22, 2018
4200 54th Ave S
Saint Petersburg, FL 33711
Conference Fee: $265
For more information, click here.
Art has long been a medium for the exploration of faith, a place where mystery can unfold without boundary or bottom. In the moments of dogmatic slumber or idolatrous devotion, the arts come as a waking savior, reminding us that God is boundless and ever-moving.
Stories—whether written, sung, performed, or painted—have continually served faith communities as a force to keep spiritual imagination alive and well. In the telling of stories, both those of Scripture and otherwise, we act as both inheritor and transgressor, acknowledging the paths laid before us and discovering ever new ones. At once familiar and strange, the stories we tell keep us engaged and questioning. Our identities, individual and corporate, are formed in the telling of stories.
Yet, stories are not only formational but prophetic. They provide a voice for the silenced, and paint a picture of realities that are often hidden and distorted. In confronting us with these realities, we are called not simply to respond in resistance, but to dream and enact new possibilities. In this way injustice is given voice and justice form.
With the theme of “Telling Stories” as guide, this conference will employ discussions, poetry readings, presentations, visual arts, and theater to examine art’s power to confront current narratives, allow people to tell their own stories, and explore new ways of talking about God, faith, and social responsibility. While the planning team is Christian, the conference will be an interfaith event open to people of all faith traditions and backgrounds, including those who don’t identify as religious.
The poet Henri Michaux once said, “Poetry, whether it is transport, invention, or music is always an imponderable which can be found in no matter what genre—a sudden enlargement of the world.” Through gathering in community and conversation we hope you’ll join us in this creative act of expansion.
Draft Schedule for the Conference