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The events of 2016 brought an end to the establishment’s comfortable reign through its control of the two party system. Much that once seemed steady and secure in our common life is now in flux. The result may be disastrous, and we must be prepared to resist some of the changes that now have political power behind them. But the new situation also offers an opening to think more radically and to organize for what is truly needed. The 2017 lecture series of the Agenda for a Prophetic Faith considers what we are called to do now in light of the Jubilee vision. What can we do to renew the conditions for life to flourish in what Pope Francis has called “our common home?”
Looking ahead to 2018
We anticipate engaging the following speakers next year:
•Dr. Melvin L. Oliver: Pitzer College's 6th President
Our 2017 Schedule
Claremont United Methodist Church,
211 W. Foothill Blvd.,
Claremont, CA 91711
John B. Cobb, Jr.
Author, Jesus’ Abba: The God Who Has Not Failed
“Can the Recent Election Become a Positive Factor in World History?”
Obviously, on many issues, those working in the prophetic tradition will find themselves in a defensive position in the coming four years. But there some positive opportunities opened up by trump’s victory and the strong response to it. John B. Cobb, Jr., a long standing leader in the prophetic critique of modern society, will highlight some of the possibilities. The political establishment, consisting of two quite similar parties has been shaken, and fundamental questions about the financial system may surface for reconsideration. The new power of climate change-deniers may lead those who want to save the world from disaster to think more radically about what is required.
Claremont Presbyterian Church, 1111 N. Mountain Ave., Claremont, CA 91711
"The Creation of a Border Security State"
In the heat of the reaction to 911, the Department of Homeland Security has grown by leaps and bounds, and has instituted programs of far-reaching significance to all American citizens. What they have created might be called the Border Security State, and every American citizen ought to be cognizant of what it means for the future of democracy in the United States. What is involved is not just the security of immigrants, legal and illegal, but also the security, and democratic way of life, of all of us in what used to be called the land of the free and home of the brave.
La Verne Church of the Brethren,
2425 E Street
La Verne, CA 91750
“Climate Justice, History and Unconsciousness”
The Hebrew prophets were amazed by a community that could or would not pay attention to the crisis brewing on their borders. For them, the crisis involved the approach of the Babylonian army as it expanded the Babylonian empire at the expense of the independent states of the then known world. For us, the crisis involves the way in which our civilization is impacting the atmosphere in such a way as to stimulate global warming. Why do people resist paying attention to and reponding to the impending crisis? Obviously, there are political and social factors that are involved. But there are also psychological dynamics involved, and the field of psychoanalysis has something to say about why people avoid at- tenting to what they need to pay attention to--and how they might better rise to the occasion before is too late.
Holy Name of Mary Catholic Church,
724 E. Bonita Ave., San Dimas, CA 91773
Sister Simone Campbell, SSS
Director, NETWORK — Lobby for Catholic Social Justice
”Pope Francis and the Way Forward”
Pope Francis has become an important leader on the world scene, not just for Christians but for all people of good will concerned about the future of the world in which we reside.
Looking ahead, what riches of wisdom and practice might be brought to the bear by a faith community with over 2,000 years of caring for the widow, the orphan, the outcast — and for all of creation?
Claremont United Church of Christ (UCC),
233 W. Harrison St.,
Claremont, CA 91711
Rector, All Saints Episcopal Church, Pasadena, CA
"Property, Slavery, and the Gospel of Economic Growth
America was built on property rights. Property rights determined who wrote the Constitution, was a primary concern of the Constitution, and determined who got to vote. Today, property value determines the quality of public education, economic opportunity, health care, food and more. Slavery and the genocide of our natives is a story about how property - and the ability to use it to generate wealth – became more important than people. Today, property and the ability to use it to generate more property and capital is still our nation's central concern. The Gospel of economic growth is not allowed to be challenged ... despite the fact that it is ecologically and morally unsustainable. The valuing of economic growth over all else is literally causing vast disparities in living conditions and life expectancies as well as a global environmental catastrophe. Yet every major political and spiritual voice continues to promote it as the greatest good. Tragically, looking through the lens of uprisings in Ferguson, Baltimore, Cleveland, Milwaukee and elsewhere, it is clear that property still matters more than people. What is our call right now as American Christians to intervene on behalf of people?