CALL FOR PAPERS
CORNERSTONE UNIVERSITY SOCIETY FOR PHILOSOPHY
April 20-21, 2012
The Cornerstone University Society for Philosophy is pleased to announce that the theme for its inaugural Spring Conference for 2012 will be “Thinking Christianity in the Present-Tense: The Politics of Discipleship.”
In his introduction to Graham Ward’s The Politics of Discipleship, James K.A. Smith succinctly articulates what he suggests should be a fundamental conviction of the Church. Namely, that the ever present task of faithful Christian discipleship might be summed up in the Church’s willingness to ask the following two questions: (1) What time is it? and; (2) What do we do now?
In recent history, no one has done more to encourage the importance and immediacy of asking these two questions than 20th century pastor and theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Addressing a conference of young Christians in 1932, Bonhoeffer spoke these words: “The word of the church to the world must [therefore] encounter the world in all its present reality from the deepest knowledge of the world, if it is to be authoritative. The church must be able to say the Word of God, the word of authority, here and now, in the most concrete way possible, from knowledge of the situation. The church may not therefore preach timeless principles however true, but only commandments which are true today. God is ‘always’ God to us ‘today.’”
Once we have answered our first question (What time is it?) we can then attempt to answer the second question (What do we do now?). It is our contention that this can only be done by a Church willing to embody itself as a unique political community able to say the Word of God, here and now. Such a people becomes possible through both cultural exegesis and the intentional cultivation of disciples.
With these themes in mind we welcome and invite our sisters and brothers to co-labor with us in exploring what it might mean to be a faithful Church in our own time. In order to further our inquiry we hope to attract voices from the vast tradition of Christian expression.
The following is a cursory, but not exhaustive, list of possible topics that we feel might aid in this discussion:
• God, Governance, and Foreign Policy
• Augustine and the City of God
• Christianity as Civil Religion
• The Presidents and American Exceptionalism
• September 11th and the War on Terror
• The Religious Right as a Response to Secularizing Trends
• The Christian and Secular Roots of America
• Bonhoeffer and the De-Christianization of Europe
• Martin Luther King Jr. and the “Beloved Community”
• Disciple Making After Metanarratives
• The Family as Space for Alternative Practice
• Biblical Studies and the Work of the Church
• The Natural Sciences and Ecological Concerns
• Ecumenism and Interdisciplinary Studies
• Evangelicals and American Politics
• Liberation Theology and Embodied Church Politics
• Liturgy and Practice as Character Formation
• New Monasticism and Intentional Communities
• Interacting with Enlightenment Philosophy After Modernity
• Demythologizing the Founding Fathers
• Discipleship and Economic Practice
• “Spiritual Formation” vs. “Student Development” in the University Setting
Papers and paper proposals will be accepted until March 20, 2012*. Please send all inquiries or submissions to CUSocietyforPhilosophy@gmail.com.
*ATTENTION: The Deadline for the Call for Papers has been extended until April 2, 2012.