Join us next November for

Global Arts and Witness in Multifaith Contexts

November 7–9, 2018

in Pasadena, California

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A Word from the Conference Organizers:

In search of holistic Christian witness, missionaries have increasingly sought to take into account all the dimensions of people’s cultural and religious lives, including their songs, their dances, their dramatic performances, their proverbs, their epic narratives (storytelling), and their visual arts. This conference, through lectures, demonstrations, and live performances, will explore the role of the arts as a central aspect for helping peoples from many different cultures and faiths get caught up in the gospel story.

We will reflect on the role of the arts in mission history. While early missionaries often closely studied the arts of the people, Protestant missionaries later came to place greater emphasis on the rational dimensions of faith, and as a result, 19th century missions mostly ignored the aesthetic and affective dimensions of people’s lives. In the 20th century, renewal movements, the rise of Pentecostalism, and a fresh focus on worship recovered a sense of the centrality of artistic practice for Christian faith and witness.

In the 21st century, the inescapable encounter between religious traditions has dramatically changed the context of mission, offering Christian leaders and missionaries new opportunities to engage with the living aesthetic traditions of world faiths. The School of Intercultural Studies’ 2018 Missiology Lectures will seek to assess the significance of this new situation and contribute to developing an evangelical missiology and spiritual theology of the arts that will serve and empower the mission of the church in multifaith contexts.

We will be honored to feature live performances by the University of California at Santa Barbara Middle Eastern Music ensemble throughout the conference.

Conference Organizers

Roberta King

Roberta R. King
Associate Professor of Communication and Ethnomusicology

William Dyrness

William A. Dyrness
Senior Professor of Theology and Culture and Dean Emeritus

Amos Yong

Amos Yong
Professor of Theology and Mission and Director of the Center for Missiological Research


Michelle Voss Roberts

Michelle Voss Roberts

Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Associate Professor of Theology
Wake Forest University

Demi McCoy

Demi “Day” McCoy

Project Coordinator, Anna Julia Cooper Center
Program Coordinator, School of Divinity Office of Admissions
Wake Forest University

Megan Meyers

Megan Meyers

Adjunct Professor of Global Arts and World Religions, Fuller Seminary
Lecturer of Worship Arts, Communication and Contextualization, Bible Institute of Sofala and Baptist Bible Institute, Beira, Mozambique

Ruth Stone

Ruth Marie Stone

Professor Emerita of Ethnomusicology and African Studies
Director, Ethnomusicology Institute
Indiana University

Jean Kidula

Jean Ngoya Kidula

Professor of Music (Ethnomusicology) and Chair of Ethnomusicology
Hugh Hodgson School of Music, University of Georgia

Sooi Ling Tan

Sooi Ling Tan

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Fuller Seminary
Adjunct Lecturer, Malaysia Baptist Theological Seminary

Joyce Lee

Joyce Lee

Adjunct Professor, Fashion Institute of Technology
Adjunct Faculty, New Jersey City University

Ruth Illman

Ruth Illman

Director, Donner Institute for Research in Religious and Cultural History
Associate Professor of Comparative Religion
Åbo Akademi University

James Krabill

James Krabill

Senior Mission Advocate
Mennonite Mission Network