Earl Lectures 2010 - Speakers & Panelists

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Speakers | Panelists


Matthew FoxMatthew Fox
From Religion to Spirituality - and Back Again?
Speaker, Plenary Session I: January 26, 10am

Matthew Fox has worked to reawaken the West to its own mystical tradition, from medieval Christian mystics to contemporary scientists who are also mystics.  He is founder and president emeritus of Wisdom University (formerly University of Creation Spirituality) in Oakland, CA.  He has led a renewal of liturgical forms with “The Cosmic Mass” that mixes dance, techno and live music, dj, vj, rap and contemporary art forms with the western liturgical tradition.  Fox received his doctorate (summa cum laude) in the History and Theology of Spirituality from the Institut Catholique de Paris, was a member of the Dominican Order for 34 years, and is an ordained Episcopal priest.  He is author of many books, including Creativity: Where the Divine and the Human Meet (2002) and Original Blessing (1983).  Read more about Matthew Fox. Hear audio of plenary session.

Melissa Wilcox

Melissa Wilcox
“A Spiritual Being Having a Human Experience”: Gender, Sexuality, and Religious Individualism
Speaker, Plenary Session III: January 27,9:45 am

Melissa Wilcox is Associate Professor of Religion and Gender Studies at Whitman University in Walla Walla, WA and director of the gender studies program there. A sociologist of religion and gender/queer studies, she is interested in cultural power of religious and quasi-religious narrative, especially as it affects internalized oppression and empowers resistance.  Her books include Coming Out in Christianity, Sexuality and the World’s Religions, and her most recent, Queer Women and Religious Individualism. Read more about Melissa WilcoxHear audio of plenary session.

Scotty McLennan

Scotty McLennan
Growing Up Spiritual or Religious?: A Developmental View
Speaker, Plenary Session V: January 28, 9 am

Scotty McLennan is an ordained minister, a lawyer, and an author.  Since 2001 he has held the post of Dean for Religious Life at Stanford University. His primary research interests are in the interface of religion, ethics, and the professions. The author of Jesus Was a Liberal: Reclaiming Christianity for All and Finding Your Religion: When the Faith You Grew Up With Has Lost Its Meaning, he teaches and oversees religious affairs on campus and is the minister of Stanford Memorial Church. Read more about Scotty McLennanHear audio of plenary session.

Donna AllenDonna E. Allen
A Womanist Query: Spirituality as Access Scripture: Matthew 9:20-22
Preaching, Closing Worship, January 28, 10:30 am

Donna Allen is founder and pastor of New Revelation Community Church in Oakland. She has taught courses on sexuality and gender at Pacific School of Religion, and has also taught preaching and worship at the American Baptist Seminary of the West, Saint Paul School of Theology in Missouri, and Lancaster Theological Seminary in Pennsylvania. Hear audio of closing worship.

Greg Murai
And Your Soul Will Dance
Musician, Closing Worship, January 28, 10:30 am

Throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, Greg has served various communities as a composer, arranger, performer and educator. As a composer, he is deeply involved in developing an authentic and inclusive musical language to meet the diverse needs of today's spiritual community. He is currently the composer in residence at Lafayette-Orinda-Presbyterian Church in the San Francisco Bay Area. As an educator, he conducts classes and lectures at San Francisco State University, Contra Costa College, Jazz Camp West and the Jazzschool. He received a BA in Music Composition from the San Jose State University School of Music. Hear audio of closing worship.

Dorsey Blake
Invocation and Reflection, January 26, 9:30am

Dorsey Blake is Presiding Minister of The Church for The Fellowship of All Peoples. He is Dean of Faculty and Visiting Professor of Spirituality and Prophetic Justice at Starr King School for the Ministry. Dr. Blake received an M.A. and M.Div. from Pacific School of Religion, and D.Min. from United Theological Seminary. He has conducted seminars and workshops locally and nationally. Rev. Blake has extensive field ministry experience with interfaith groups addressing justice and peace issues. Hear audio of invocation.

Horace GriffinHorace Griffin
CLGS luncheon speaker, January 27

Horace Griffin is Associate Professor of Field Education and Leadership Development at the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, California.  An ordained priest in the Episcopal Church USA, he served on faculty at the General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church in New York City and associate priest at All Saints Episcopal Church in Glen Rock, New Jersey. His first book, Their Own Receive Them Not: African American Lesbians and Gays in Black Churches received the 2006 Lambda Literary Award in LGBT Studies.  This groundbreaking work also received a Stonewall Award nomination.

Jay JohnsonJay Emerson Johnson
Invocation and Reflection, January 27

Jay Johnson is a theologian and Episcopal priest.  He is Senior Director, Academic Research and Resources, at the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies in Ministry, and also teaches courses at Pacific School of Religion and the Church Divinity School of the Pacific.  Jay has published articles on theology and sexuality and his first book, Dancing with God: Anglican Christianity and the Practice of Hope, was published in 2005. Jay is a popular retreat leader and facilitator of adult education programs, both in the San Francisco Bay Area and around the country. 

Munir Jiwa
Bade Museum Lecturer, January 25 at 5:30pm

Munir Jiwa is the founding director of the Center for Islamic Studies and Assistant Professor of Islamic Studies at the Graduate Theological Union. He holds a Ph.D. and M.Phil. in Anthropology from Columbia University and an M.T.S. in World Religions from Harvard Divinity School.  He is currently revising a manuscript for publication tentatively entitled: Exhibiting Islam: Aesthetics, Politics and Religion.  His Bade Museum Lecture title is: "E Pluribus Umma: Secular Fundamentalism and the Aesthetics of Islamic Norms."



Women's Spirituality Panel
Plenary Session II, Tuesday, January 2, 3:00pm
Hear audio of panel session.

Deena AranoffDeena Aranoff is Assistant Professor of Medieval Jewish Studies at the Graduate Theological Union.  She teaches courses on Jewish society and culture in the medieval and early-modern European context. Her interests include rabbinic literature, medieval patterns of Jewish thought and the broader question of continuity and change in Jewish history. She received a Ph.D. in history from Columbia University.

Fania DavisFania Davis is a civil rights trial lawyer in Oakland, California. She specializes in employment discrimination litigation and teaches indigenous justice and restorative justice. Her writings include her dissertation on the indigenous paradigm, a United Nations International Labor Organization publication on Affirmative Action in the U.S., and a journal article on the Black Family. She received her law degree from the University of California, Berkeley, and her Ph.D. from the California Institute of Integral Studies.

Sr. Marianne FarinaSr. Marianne Farina is Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Theology at the Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology in Berkeley. She received a Master of Arts in Pastoral Theology from Santa Clara University and a Ph.D. in Theological Ethics from Boston College. With more than 25 years of experience in education and pastoral ministry, Sister Marianne has worked around the globe in education and social development projects that promote social justice and interfaith dialogue.

Uzma HusainiUzma Husaini teaches at Las Positas College in Livermore, and is a doctoral student in Islamic Studies at the Graduate Theological Union. She has been involved in interfaith work through the Islamic Networks Group since 1994, appearing on Bill Moyers’ Journal in a segment, “Perspectives from Muslim Women.”  She holds degrees in English from UC Davis and CSU Hayward, and teaching credentials from San Francisco State University.

Arisika RazakArisika Razak is program chair of the Women's Spirituality program at California Institute of Integral Studies. She is an African-American healer, ritualist, spiritual dancer, and educator who practices an eclectic mix of Earth-based spiritual traditions.  She has worked with indigent women as an inner-city nurse-midwife for more than 20 years, focusing on the lives and cultures of women of color, which has led to her research interest in feminist, womanist, mujerista, and postcolonial epistemologies and worldviews, and in women’s health.


Innovative Response Panel: Churches and Partner Faith Communities Respond to Spiritual But Not Religious
Plenary Session IV, Wednesday, January 27, 2:00pm 
Hear audio of plenary session.

The separation of believing from belonging has not gone unnoticed by America's faith communities.  This afternoon's panel draws on sociologists and religious leaders for insight into this new phenomenon and a sampling of ways religious institutions are responding.

Tobin BelzerTobin Belzer is Research Associate at the Center for Religion and Civic Culture at the University of Southern California. She earned her PhD in Sociology from Brandeis University.  Her research focus is young adult Jewish identity, Jewish and Muslim relations, gender, and congregational studies.  Belzer is co-editor of Joining the Sisterhood: Young Jewish Women Write Their Lives.

Rebecca Kim

Rebecca Y. Kim is Associate Professor of Sociology and the Director of the Ethnic Studies program at Pepperdine University. She received her Ph.D. in Sociology at the University of California at Los Angeles. She has published on topics related to immigration, religion, and the second-generation. She is the author of God’s New Whiz Kids? Korean American Evangelicals on Campus. She is currently conducting research on Korean missionaries.

Ian LawtonIan Lawton is co-founder of SBNR.org (Spiritual But Not Religious) and Executive Minister of Christ Community Church in Spring Lake, Michigan.  He is an ordained Anglican priest, a sociologist and author, and has worked extensively with the disenfranchised and those outside of organized religion.  He has worked in his native Australia, and New Zealand, and came to the United States at the invitation of Bishop John Shelby Spong. 

Bill McKinneyBill McKinney (Moderator) began duties as Pacific School of Religion's tenth president in July, 1996. An ordained United Church of Christ minister and sociologist of American religion, Bill's work has focused on helping faith communities play an active role in public life. He is former Research Director for the United Church Board for Homeland Ministries and served for eleven years as Dean and Professor of American Religion at Hartford Seminary in Hartford, Connecticut.

Jim MitulskiJim Mitulski has been a pastor for 27 years, has served churches in New York City, Los Angeles and San Francisco, and currently the pastor of New Spirit Community Church which meets on campus at the PSR chapel, and which is affiliated with the United Church of Christ, the Disciples of Christ and the Metropolitan Community Churches. His education includes a BA from Columbia University, an M.Div. from PSR, an honorary doctorate in sacred theology from Starr King School for the Ministry, and a Merrill Fellow at the Harvard Divinity School.

Mark ShibleyMark Shibley is professor of sociology and environmental studies at Southern Oregon University where he coordinates an interdisciplinary social science and policy program in environmental studies. His most recent work on the spirituality of the “unchurched” was published in Religion and Public Life in the Pacific Northwest: The None Zone and Cascadia: The Elusive Utopia: Exploring the Spirit of the Pacific Northwest.

Contact the Earl Lectures office with questions about presenters and performers.

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