Image to Insight: The Power of Film in Faith and Culture

The 101st Earl Lectures and Pastoral Conference
January 29–31, 2002

Pacific School of Religion celebrated its 101st annual Earl Lectures and Pastoral Conference in January with a program on "Image to Insight: The Power of Film in Faith and Culture." Held at First Congregational Church of Berkeley, the three-day event featured lectures, workshops and public conversations with national leaders in film and television, artists who are renewing worship through the use of multi-media, and people of faith in the film industry.

Earl Lecturers included Michael Morris, Professor of Religion and Arts at the Dominican School of Theology and Philosophy in Berkeley; Edward McNulty, a Presbyterian minister and editor of Visual Parables; Michael Rhodes, Emmy-award winning director of the feature films Romero, and Entertaining Angels: The Dorothy Day Story; Oscar winning writer Bruce Joel Rubin; screenwriter Linda Seger; Ron Shelton, director of Bull Durham and several other major films; Terry Sweeney, Senior Vice-President of Paulist Productions; and Judy Fentress Williams, Professor of Hebrew Studies at Hartford Seminary.

Conference preachers were Michael G. Bausch, adjunct faculty member in technology and ministry at Dubuque Theological Seminary; Yvette Flunder, pastor of City of Refuge UCC in San Francisco; and Nancy L. Wilson, Vice Moderator of the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches.

A wide variety of workshops addressed topics such as filmmaking as spiritual transformation; images of God in prime-time television; visual proclamation in worship; ethnicity and faith in Asian American / Pacific Islander films; developing video projects with youth; visual representations of African American history in liturgy, ritual, drama and iconography; looking anew at images in hymns; multi-media resources for worship and spiritual nurture; and images from Christian parables that can transform everyday life. Workshop leaders included PSR faculty and other scholars, filmmakers, artists, pastors, youth workers, and other community leaders.

Enjoy some photos from the conference.

Download the conference program book in PDF format.