The Ekklesia Project

   July 2010 Ordinary Time 


EP Gathering 2010

More EP Gathering pics here.
steve  Plenary Presentations Now Available on EP Website

  The first plenary presentation,
And God Said: Creation, Word-Care, and the Care
  of the World, was presented by new EP board chair, Debra Dean Murphy.  The
God has Spoken in the Son: Communication and Communion, was offered
  by D. Stephen Long.  Barry Harvey was our final plenary presenter, sharing a
  presentation titled
Ransomed from Every Language: The Church as a Community
  of Word-Care

Therese Lysaught thanked, Debra Dean Murphy Welcomed

  At the
meeting of the EP Board that immediately preceded the Gathering, Debra Dean Murphy was installed as our new board chair following five years of able and faithful  leadership from Therese Lysaught.  Therese will continue to serve the board as vice-chair. During the Gathering we were given the opportunity to express our heartfelt gratitude to Therese (left) and extend a welcome to Deb
  (seen here with husband Jim and Phil Kenneson), who also
offered our first plenary address. 

Debra has been a member of the EP board for three Debyears.  She currently serves as Assistant Professor of Religion and Christian Education at West Virginia Wesleyan College.  Deb is a prolific blogger, not only on our own bLOGOS, but also on her personal blog
and The
Christian Century's CC blogs.
Giving Thanks for the Life of Art Gish
We give thanks for the life of Art Gish, brother in Christ and Christian peacemaker, who died unexpectedly last week. For decades Art and Peggy Gish have lived Jesus' way of nonviolence, inspiring generations of peace activists with their faithful witness. Art is the father of long-time EP friend Dale Gish. May God's love surround Dale, his wife, Debbie, and their extended family in this time of grieving and remembering.  A short documentary about Art and Peggy titled "Old Radicals" can be viewed here.

70th Birthday Celebration for Stanley Hauerwas

Stanley Hauerwas, teacher and  mentor to many of us and friend to all of us, was honored in sev
Staneral ways on the occasion of his 70th birthday. Thirteen EP endorsers contributed essays to a new Ekklesia Project pamphlet, Wordcare: Hauerwas, Language and the Church, which was distributed to all present (it should soon be available on the EP website).  Stan Wilson and Kyle Childress edited the pamphlet beneath a cloak of great secrecy (they used the internet). 

The publication
of a festschrift in Hauerwas' honor was also announced.  All of unsettlingthe contributors are former students of Stanley's. Finally, Hauerwas was presented with the new issue of The Mennonite Quarterly Review, which pays tribute to him and includes a comprehensive Hauerwas bibliography (doubtless incomplete by now).

At the annual EP pizza party, Stanley was serenaded with a heartfelt, if ragged, rendition of "Happy Birthday" and a cake.  Special moments in life's journey, as Stanley has taught us, should be celebrated in the midst of our friends.
GATHERING 2011 ANYONE? Who Is My Neighbor?
The EP Board has for some time wanted to engage the questions that cluster around
the migration of peoples, the borders of nation states, and the church's practice of love. "Who Is My Neighbor?" is the working title of Gathering 2011.  With Arizona's immigration law cresting the news cycle this week, our topic seems timely. As timely as Genesis 12 and the book of Ruth. The planning team will include Mark Lau Branson, Brian Volck, Nekeisha Alexis-Baker, Barry Harvey, and Brent Laytham. No details yet on date, but we will be targeting early to mid-July again.
Keep Those Cards and Letters Coming!

There seems to be an annual, three-part process to many of my cherished EP friendships:
 1. We share a wonderful Gathering experience and revel in the gift of one another's presence.
 2. We exchange a flurry of notes or phone calls in the weeks after the Gathering.
 3. The demands of everyday life catch up with us, and the flurry turns to a trickle before ceasing.
The mission of this newsletter is to help us maintain our friendships throughout the year by keeping us mindful of one another and of our common identity as disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ.  To that end, I am always grateful to receive news to share with our EP friends.  In particular, it is helpful to hear of projects you are working on, books or articles you are writing, and events you are planning that would be of interest to the EP community.  I am also eager to receive brief reviews of new books whose authors have an EP connection.  Please take time to drop me a note and help us to maintain our friendships through the long interval between Gatherings!
John McFadden