We draw our theology from the street - "from the cauldron of everyday life, of hardship and trials" - while being in conversation with theologies of freedom movements rooted in the daring and dangerous love of Jesus, our movement founder. Everyone is welcome to join in any of these community conversations at St Mark's Episcopal Church. For details, click on hyperlinked conversation title.
ON THE LEARNING PROCESS
from the co-founder of "Seminary of the Street"
In these conversations, we are taking heed the invitation of the Rev. Lynice Pinkard (a trauma therapist, a UCC pastor, and my mentor in seminary), one of the visionaries who initially conceptualized Seminary of the Street in Oakland, California. It is an invitation to participate in a transformative learning program for people who want to be part of building the new world we all know is coming. It is a world that is radically welcoming and inclusive, invested in the flourishing of all people and creation. However, there is a risk. Walter Brueggemann reminds us that the life of faith and hope is dangerous and not a convenient one. He writes:
"Hope is inescapably inconvenient and eventually dangerous. Because hope contradicts the present world, it is inconvenient. Thus Abraham had to depart his home country to receive God’s promise. The first disciples of Jesus, “left everything” to follow. The hopers of faith have understood that God’s newness disrupts a comfortable life. That newness summons us out of our comfortable zone to be with folks we might not prefer, doing tasks and taking risks we might not easily choose."
"Soon or late, hope brings us into conflict with the forceful powers that defend the status quo - that will go to great violent ends to protect that status quo. Thus Moses finally had to confront Pharaoh. Esther risked her life to confront the king. Jesus had to face the violent power of Rome. And we know that Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Martin Luther King Jr, Oscar Romero and the missionaries killed in El Salvador, and so many others. Most of us will not go so far as such danger. All of us, however, are invited the inconvenience of God’s newness. And once we go there, who knows what risks may follow."
(from Sojourners: "The Company of the Unafraid"by Walter Brueggemann)
As we embark on our journey as hopers of faith, I invite you to learn St. Mark's Song of the Month "Another World," click on the photo below, or this link.