Around Town: Laing Lecturer Malcolm Guite, PT’s growth, MVA Faith Caucus . . .

British poet and academic Malcolm Guite will deliver the Laing Lectures this year.

I imagine it was a bittersweet experience for Malcolm Guite when he was asked to deliver Regent College’s Laing Lecture Series this year.

Here is why, from Regent College:

Last year, Regent College was honoured that Dr. Lamin Sanneh – a Gambian scholar and leading thinker in World Christianity – had agreed to come to Regent as our 2019 Laing Lecturer. Sadly, Dr. Sanneh passed away on January 6, 2019 at the age of 76, survived by his wife, son and daughter.

Christianity Today published a collection of reflections on Sanneh’s remarkable life and career from a number of friends and fellow scholars.

Lamin Sanneh passed away January 6.

As we continue to grieve this loss, we are grateful for Dr. Malcolm Guite, who has agreed to serve as our new 2019 Laing Lecturer. His lecture series will run from April 9 –11. Please note that these are not the same dates that Dr. Sanneh had planned on delivering his lectures.

Dr. Guite has become one of the chief imaginations in today’s church, having published numerous popular works of theology, literary analysis and poetry. He has toured widely in Europe and North America, lecturing everywhere from community churches to St. Paul’s Cathedral in London.

He is renowned for combining great erudition with a trademark zest, humour and knack for storytelling – not to mention a formidable reserve of memorized verse. His most recent major work is Mariner, a spiritual biography of Samuel Taylor Coleridge (February 2017), which the Times Literary Supplement called a “fascinating investigation [that] haunts the mind long after the book is closed.”

Dr. Guite’s lectures will be entitled “Imagining the Kingdom: Parable, Poetry and Gospel.” He describes the series as follows:

From the first moment that he proclaims the kingdom of God, Jesus appeals to our imagination. He makes that appeal through the parables of the kingdom, the paradoxes of the gospel, the enigmatic and beautiful signs he gave in his miracles and in those moments when the heavens open and the ordinary is transfigured.

In the gift of faith, and in Christ himself, we glimpse more than we can yet understand: Our imagination apprehends more than our reason comprehends.

This is not to say that the gospel is in any way “imaginary” in the dismissive sense of “unreal” or “untrue.” On the contrary it is so real and so true that we need every faculty of mind and body, including imagination, to apprehend it.

In an age of linear, one-level readings of the word and the world, we need to recover confidence in the baptised imagination as a truth-bearing faculty.

At the 2019 Laing Lectures, hear Dr. Malcolm Guite make the case for a faith that is imaginatively grasped and imaginatively proclaimed. Consider in turn Christ’s appeal to the poetic, the moral and the prophetic imagination.

‘The best soil’ for Pacific Theatre

‘The Seafarer’ at Pacific Theatre.

I’m sure many of us have wondered how Pacific Theatre has managed to thrive in Vancouver, of all places. Ron Reed just put down some thoughts on his Soul Food Vancouver blog. Here’s his introduction. Do read the illuminating interview with Jason Byassee as well:

A few years back I did an interview with Jason Byassee, who was new in town and interviewing some Vancouver Christians whose work caught his interest. I suppose it was a way to get to know the lay of the land in his new city, and to meet people; Jason is a remarkable “connector.”

In fact, within a couple short years he had built such a remarkable network of relationships here that he ended up on the Pacific Theatre board, as an advocate and “cheer-leader” who is also very smart about leadership and most other things.

I recently heard from a theatre student in Iowa who had read the article and was puzzled about something. Jason summed up some of my meanderings this way:

There are other places where this could have worked, but we’d have been different. I’d have been a different person; I’d have built a different theater. But this place drew me. I’ve often wondered what it would have been like if we’d planted someplace else. But this is the best soil.

What did I mean by my cryptic comment about “the best soil”? So this morning in an email I tried to make sense of that.

Go here for what Ron wrote.
MVA Faith Caucus
The Metro Vancouver Alliance (MVA) has had strong support from a range of faith (mainly Christian) groups over the past few years, but they clearly feel there is room for more growth, so they’re launching the MVA Faith Caucus February 19 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church.
Here is their invitation:

This luncheon will be an opportunity to build relationships with clergy and lay leaders from various faith traditions across Metro Vancouver. Together we will explore the values that motivate us to act together for the common good.

What’s on the menu? We will feed you lots of good stories about the meaningful impact that broad-based faith organizing has had on Canadian society. (There will also be food, of course!) Come with an appetite to relate with one another, and we promise that you will walk away with more than enough material for a great sermon or reflection!

MVA describes itself in this way:

Metro Vancouver Alliance is a broad-based alliance of community groups, labour, faith and educational institutions working together for the common good.

Broad-based community organizations operate on the principle of ‘power before program.’ In other words, they build strong relationships amongst diverse groups in the community. Those groups then come together to listen to their members’ concerns and to agree on issues that can be worked on together. This ensures that the alliances are sustainable over the long term and that members work on those issues that concretely matter most to them. Members develop leadership skills and learn “the art of politics” through active engagement and participation.

The more than 50 member organizations are divided into four categories: faith groups (26 strong), labour unions and locals, community groups and educational groups. Go here to see the membership list.

Of the three sponsoring organizations, two are denominations – the Anglican Diocese of New Westminster and the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Vancouver. The other sponsor is Vancity.

A November 23, 2018 blog post noted:

Government of British Columbia has kept its promise to MVA leaders to legislate a poverty reduction strategy!

In 2017, John Horgan and Andrew Weaver stood before 800 MVA leaders and committed to legislate a poverty reduction strategy. This week, the legislation passed unanimously!

I had a post about that meeting on Church for Vancouver.

February 6, 2019

Multiply Conference 2019 – February 6, 2019 - February 7, 2019 at All Day

February 7, 2019

A Prayer for Owen Meany – February 7, 2019 - February 9, 2019 at All Day
Pastors' Chapel and Brunch – February 7, 2019 at 9:00 am - 10:30 am

February 8, 2019

City in Focus Breakfast with June Francis: Diversity & Constructed Identities – February 8, 2019 at 7:00 am - 8:30 am
A Musical Evening in Support of Wet'suwet'en – February 8, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 11:30 pm
Screening: Fatal Flaws – February 8, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Earth, Wind, Fire & Life – February 8, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

February 9, 2019

Changing Minds and Saving Lives: Becoming an Effective Pro-life Ambassador – February 9, 2019 at 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Alzheimer Café – February 9, 2019 at 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Roddan Jubilee Lectures: Karen Joseph – February 9, 2019 at 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

February 10, 2019

Jazz Vespers in the Valley: Don Stewart (Black History Month) – February 10, 2019 at 4:00 am - 5:00 am
KAIROS Blanket Exercise – February 10, 2019 at 1:00 pm - 4:30 pm

February 13, 2019

Jazz Evensong: Maria Ho – February 13, 2019 at 8:00 am - 9:30 am
LeaderImpact Metro Vancouver Young Leaders Kickoff – February 13, 2019 at 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm

February 14, 2019

Eve Leader: Through a Glass Darkly – February 14, 2019 - February 15, 2019 at All Day
The Date Night Tour – February 14, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

February 15, 2019

Trio Céleste – February 15, 2019 at 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
Song & Story: A Celebration of the Indigenous Studies Program, featuring Cheryl Bear – February 15, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Y4C Presents '7 Mountains of Influence in Our Culture' – February 15, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 10:30 pm

February 16, 2019

Open Mosque Day – February 16, 2019 at 10:00 am - 3:00 pm
Honduras Fundraiser High Tea – February 16, 2019 at 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Masterpieces: Famous Choruses of Great Composers – February 16, 2019 at 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

February 17, 2019

Taizé Contemplative Service – February 17, 2019 at 4:00 am - 5:00 am

February 19, 2019

MVA Faith Caucus – February 19, 2019 at 11:30 am - 1:30 pm
Inklings Institute of Canada: The Perilous Lot of the Christian Artist – February 19, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Mixing Science & the Mystics (part 1) – February 19, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

February 20, 2019

Children of God – February 20, 2019 - March 10, 2019 at All Day

February 21, 2019

Church Planting in Post-Christian Soil: a call for papers – February 21, 2019 at All Day
Dark Glass Theatre: The Amish Project – February 21, 2019 - February 23, 2019 at 12:00 am
Canada in Crisis: Mobilizing the Church for Action – Pastors Forum – February 21, 2019 at 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Andrea Loewen Book Launch for 'Feeling Better – A Field Guide to Liking Yourself' – February 21, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Shad – February 21, 2019 at 8:00 pm - 11:00 pm

February 22, 2019

Christopher Yuan Conference, with Dr. Leon & Angela Yuan – February 22, 2019 - February 24, 2019 at All Day
Work as Worship Retreat – February 22, 2019 at 7:30 am - 2:30 pm
Christianity at a Crossroads with Clarence Janzen – February 22, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

February 23, 2019

Coldest Night of the Year – February 23, 2019 at All Day
Delta Prayer Breakfast – February 23, 2019 at 8:15 am - 11:00 am
Journey Home Refugee Support: Basic Training – February 23, 2019 at 8:45 am - 3:00 pm
Screen Time (Simulcast): Parenting in a Media Saturated Culture – February 23, 2019 at 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Singable Saturdays: Mozart Edition – February 23, 2019 at 10:00 am - 12:30 pm
Tensions in the Bible: The Development of Catholic-Jewish Relations in the Context of Biblical Interpretation – February 23, 2019 at 11:00 am - 1:00 pm
Christianity at a Crossroads with Clarence Janzen – February 23, 2019 at 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Healing Night with Pastor Anthony Greco – February 23, 2019 at 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Ember – February 23, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Reverb: Songs, Poems, Stories – February 23, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm
What About the Dinosaurs? with Clarence Janzen – February 23, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Young Street Vocal Band – February 23, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Worship Invades Coquitlam – February 23, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 10:00 pm

February 24, 2019

Grand Reopening & Celebration of African Fountain Chapel Vancouver (AME) – February 24, 2019 at 11:00 am - 4:30 pm
Jazz Vespers @ St. Andrew's United Church – February 24, 2019 at 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Jazz Vespers in the Valley: Olaf de Shield (Black History Month) – February 24, 2019 at 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Dedication Service: Central Presbyterian Church – February 24, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

February 25, 2019

Kairos Cantonese Course – February 25, 2019 at All Day
David Clough: On Animals Volume II – the Challenge of Christian Animal Ethics – February 25, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
Stephen Fearing – February 25, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 10:00 pm

February 26, 2019

Tuesday Morning with John Stetch – February 26, 2019 at 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Open House: Mission to Seafarers – February 26, 2019 at 4:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Animals and Ethics in the 21st Century with Dr. David Clough, sponsored by Vancouver Humane Society – February 26, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Mixing Science & the Mystics (part 2) – February 26, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

February 28, 2019

Khari Wendell McClelland: We Now Recognize – February 28, 2019 at All Day
Hans Boersma: Lectio Divina – Renewing Our Practice – February 28, 2019 at 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Bryanna Russell: Making Womb – Opening Reception – February 28, 2019 at 4:30 pm - 7:30 pm

March 1, 2019

Apologetics Canada Conference 2019 – March 1, 2019 - March 2, 2019 at All Day
World Day of Prayer: Ecumenical Worship Service – March 1, 2019 at 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Doing Family Right Conference with Dr. Dave Currie – March 1, 2019 - March 2, 2019 at 6:30 pm - 4:30 pm
Mini Choi: The Twelve Apostels – March 1, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

March 2, 2019

Tactics Evangelism Training – March 2, 2019 at 8:30 am - 2:15 pm
Finding God in the Dark: Lenten Retreat – March 2, 2019 at 9:15 am - 3:30 pm
Pastors Brunch with Bill Wiese – March 2, 2019 at 9:30 am - 11:00 am
Taste of the World – March 2, 2019 at 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Ladysmith Black Mambazo with Habib Koité and Bassekou Kouyate – March 2, 2019 at 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

March 6, 2019

Mary McCampbell: "This is the Way the World Ends": The Acopalypse in Contemporary Film, Fiction & Television – March 6, 2019 at 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Darrel Falk & Todd Wood: Evolutionary Creation and Young Earth Creationism (Separate Talks) – March 6, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

March 7, 2019

Darrel Falk & Todd Wood: The Fool, the Heretic & the God Whose Standard is Love – March 7, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

March 8, 2019

Mirror Dance Production: Before is Now – March 8, 2019 at All Day
MHM Book Launch: Janet Boldt – March 8, 2019 at 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Opening to God in Silence: A Lenten Weekend Retreat – March 8, 2019 - March 10, 2019 at 5:30 pm - 2:00 pm
Spark 2019 Preteen Gathering – March 8, 2019 - March 9, 2019 at 6:00 pm - 4:00 pm
André Valadão: Brazilian Ministry Concert – March 8, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

March 9, 2019

CFaN Impact Breakfast with Peter Vandenberg – March 9, 2019 at 8:30 am - 10:30 am
Declining Churches in Canada: How Can We Respond? – March 9, 2019 at 9:00 am - 4:00 pm
DivorceCare (Saturday mornings) – March 9, 2019 at 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Health Seminar on "CANNABIS" (in Cantonese) – March 9, 2019 at 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm
Chris Tomlin Holy Roar Tour – March 9, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Seven Mile Story – March 9, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

March 10, 2019

Climate Change Presentation, Prayer – March 10, 2019 at 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm
An Evening with John Brierley: The Camino – a Path of Awakening – March 10, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Seven Mile Story – March 10, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

March 12, 2019

Seven Mile Story – March 12, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

March 13, 2019

Film Screening: Between a Shoe and the Roof – March 13, 2019 at 12:00 pm - 1:15 pm
Dennis Danielson: Ethics & the Logic of Naturalism – March 13, 2019 at 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm
Reconciliation and the Indian Act – March 13, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

March 14, 2019

20th Annual Mel Smith Lecture: Preston Manning – March 14, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Young People and the Church? A Conversation – March 14, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

March 15, 2019

G. Peter Kaye Lectures: John Bell of the Iona Community – March 15, 2019 - March 17, 2019 at 12:00 am
CampsBC Celebration Banquet & Fundraiser – March 15, 2019 at 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Seven Mile Story – March 15, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Vancouver Orpheus Choir: Celtic Connections – March 15, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

March 16, 2019

Inspiring Dominican Saints: Pope St. Pius V – March 16, 2019 at 9:15 am - 12:15 pm
Beyond Snakes & Shamrocks: Missional Leadership Lessons from St. Patrick – March 16, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

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