Dec. 17, 2017
LA MIRADA, CALIF. — Leading voices in Christian thought and culture will explore how to transform conflict into conversation at the second annual Table Conference, “#DISAGREE,” hosted by Biola University’s Center for Christian Thought (CCT).
The purpose of the Table Conference is to provide dialogues that influence participants to navigate ideological differences, form better listening and speaking habits, understand and humanize people who think differently, embody truth and love amidst heated disagreements, and chart a course towards better public discourse.
Director for CCT, Gregg TenElshof, believes disagreement can be used for deepening and growing relationships, but it has the tendency to bring disunity.
"Disagreement is an inescapable fact of life. We can’t outrun, outsmart, or out-love it. It’s here to stay. And, if we learn how to interact with it well, it can be a powerful resource for learning, for love, and even for growth into deep and abiding unity. But usually it’s not. Usually it divides us, angers us, and brings to the surface our deepest fears and insecurities,” said TenElshof.
In the midst of the anger, fear, and insecurity that disagreement often brings, the conference speakers will focus on how to transform disagreement into dialogues that will ultimately bring good.
“The speakers at #disagree have insight that can help us to pry disagreement away from the vices which so often accompany it and to harness its power for good. This insight is badly needed in a world that seems increasingly incapable of fruitful engagement in the context of disagreement. If we can’t have gone with disagreement, we do well to learn how to flourish in its midst,” sad TenElshof.
The conference will feature 17-minute talks and 45-minute small group discussion seminars featuring civil rights activist John M. Perkins, theologian and philosopher Richard Mouw, social psychologist, author, and professor Christena Cleveland, Pastor at EVFree Fullerton Mike Erre, senior columnist for Religion News Service Jonathan Merritt, author and professor Alissa Wilkinson, professor of communication and author Tim Muehlhoff, and, professor of theology and author Laura Smit.
The conference will be held on Biola’s campus and will take place on Friday, March 20 from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. and on Saturday, March 21 from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Register for the conference and purchase tickets on the conference website.
For more information, contact Jenna Loumagne, Media Relations Specialist, at (562) 777-4061 or firstname.lastname@example.org
media [dot] relations [at] biola [dot] edu