Each year, First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) hosts a community workshop/lecture series entitled Voices:  Addressing Issues That Affect the Church and Wider Community.  Our audience is the wider ecumenical faith community (clergy, chaplains, lay leaders) in the Twin Cities, and our goal is to provide tools to our colleagues and wider community to help address these issues, through nationally-recognized speakers & partnerships with local organizations and practitioners. Additionally, the registration fee is extremely affordable through the support of The Wholeness Fund of First Christian Church Minneapolis.  In keeping with our calling as Disciples of Christ to “be a movement for wholeness in a fragmented world”, The Wholeness Fund seeks to support local & global organizations that strive to meet the needs of their community by serving people in their walk through life.

Surly Brewing Company – Scheid Hall
520 Malcolm Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414 (Map and Directions)

Author. Speaker. Antagonist. God Nerd. Jim Wallis of Sojourners calls Piatt “one of the smartest and most provocative young voices we have.”

Christian is the creator and editor of the Banned Questions book series, which include Banned Questions About the BibleBanned Questions About Jesus and Banned Questions About Christians. He co-created and co-edits the WTF: Where’s the Faith? young adult series with Chalice Press, for which he also co-edited the book Split Ticket: Independent Faith in a Time of Partisan Politics, and contributed a chapter to Oh God, Oh God, Oh God!: Young Adults Speak Out About Sexuality and Christianity. His newest book, Surviving the Bible: A Devotional for the New Church Year is designed to help you resuscitate your relationship with the Bible.

He is also the host of the Homebrewed CultureCast podcast series, which discusses pop culture and news through the lens of Christianity.


2:00-3:00 pm: Evolving Justice: From Retribution to Restoration
If we want Biblical justification for seeking revenge, we don’t have to look any further than, “Eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth.” But given that the rule of the land before this was “Avenge sevenfold,” this new model of justice actually was an effort to limit the escalation of violence by retributive means. So when Jesus told people to turn the other cheek, he was perfecting the intent of the old law by taking it a dramatic and important step further. Whereas retributive justice is concerned with what is fair and with getting even, restorative justice is concerned with what is right and with making things whole again. The call of the gospel is to the latter, and Christian walks us through what this looks like in our world today.

3:00 pm: Break

3:15-4:30 pm: New book discussion: Surviving the Bible.
A lot of us have tried to read the Bible. And we’ve failed. Christian Piatt has too. But now, using the annual lectionary as his guide, he has put together a devotional that allows us to read through major parts of the Old and New Testaments and finally understand them in plain English.

Buffet Dinner at Surly

7:00-9:00 pm: Homebrewed Christianity CultureCast Podcast
Our guest for the evening is Dr. Pamela Ayo Yetunde from United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities.  Our discussion topic is around her latest project at the seminary, Theology of Prince, her own exploration of Prince’s theology/spirituality (which she’s done some writing and speaking about), and why this is an important project in our current cultural milieu. You can learn more about her project here.  

Pamela Ayo Yetunde is Assistant Professor of Pastoral and Spiritual Care and Counseling at United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities. She came to United in 2017. She received her Th.D. from Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, GA, where she specialized in pastoral counseling. Her research and scholarship focus on Object Relations Theory and psychotherapy, Buddhist psychology, Womanist Theology, Christian-Buddhist spiritual transitional stages, Black lesbian poet Audre Lorde as a spiritual and psychological resource, and chaplain formation.  Yetunde has published a number of blog and magazine articles and has written journal articles (to be published in 2017).  Yetunde lives in Minnesota with her spouse. She is an interfaith Buddhist practitioner.

Cost: $40, which includes:
2 afternoon presentations * taping of Homebrewed CultureCast in evening * Christian’s latest book * Appetizers through the event

Register For Event 

Sponsored by First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and Crowdscribed, in partnership with United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities 


Past Conferences:
November 2016:  Mental Health and The Faith Community’s Response – Rev. Dr. Sarah Griffith Lund
May 2016:  Moral Injury and Moral Meaning Making – Rev. Dr. Rita Nakashima Brock