Plenaries and Special Features

Friday, Nov 2, 1:30 p.m. — 3:00 p.m.

Plenary #1: Greenhouses of Hope: Religious Educators Engaging in Vocational Discernment toward Social Change
Fund for Theological Education & Religious Education in Academic Disciplines and Institutions Forum
Panelists representing a project funded by FTE will present their research and facilitate small group discussions. The topic will be how young religious leaders are engaging in the social justice movements of their day and what is the role of faith communities and religious education in nurturing young leaders who will change the world. (More…)

Dori Baker, Fund for Theological Education, Coordinator

  • Sinai Chung, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
  • Margaret Ann Crain, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
  • Fred Edie, Duke Divinity School
  • Joyce Mercer, Virginia Theological Seminary
  • Jeffery Tribble, Columbia Theological Seminary
  • Katherine Turpin, Iliff School of Theology

Friday, Nov 2, 6:30 p.m. – 7:15 p.m.

Plenary #2: Let Freedom Ring! Religious Education at the Intersection of Social Justice, Liberation, and Civil/Human Rights
Yolanda Y. Smith, REA President-Elect and 2012 Program Chair

Saturday, Nov 3, 9:15 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.

Plenary #3: Concerned Black Clergy of Atlanta
Rev. Frank Brown, Pastor of Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church, Atlanta, President
Youth Hope-Builders Academy
Dr. Anne Wimberly, Interdenominational Theological Center, Executive Director
Black Experience Task Force and Religious Education in Faith Communities Forum

Two Atlanta-based, faith-centered organizations describe their leadership, advocacy, and service to alleviate suffering and enhance the flourishing of their communities.  Several Atlanta youth will also present. (More…)

Saturday, Nov 3, 1:45 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Plenary 4: Tapestry Weaving: Nurturing a New Generation of Religious Education Scholars
Anne Lockhart, Coordinator
A mentoring session and glimpse of the future through dialogue between students and seasoned scholars.

Saturday, Nov 3, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Banquet and Speaker: Rev. Dr. C.T. Vivian
Dr. C. T. Vivian is a battle-scarred American Civil Rights pioneer who has never let his commitment to social justice lapse. He is as fervent today as he was in the 1960s when he marched with Dr. Martin Luther King, rode with other Freedom Riders into Jackson, Mississippi, served time in the Jackson State Penitentiary, and challenged Nashville Mayor Ben West and Selma, AL, Sheriff Jim Clark. His energy and wisdom are now focused to a great extent on education, an essential element of contemporary life and of nonviolent social justice activism. (More…)

Sunday, Nov 4, 10:30 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.

Plenary #5: Welcoming America:  Reflections on Immigration
Rachel Steinhardt, Director of Strategic Partnerships & Communications, Welcoming America
Religious Education in Public Life and Global Community Forum

An introduction to the work of Welcoming America to address the implications of our increasingly diverse communities. The documentary shown Saturday evening, “Welcome to Shelbyville,” features the efforts of Welcoming Tennessee, the model for all subsequent Welcoming America campaigns. The film takes an intimate look at a southern town as its residents – whites and African Americans, Latinos and Somalis – grapple with their religious and cultural beliefs, their histories and their evolving ways of life. (More…)

Other Special Features

Friday, Nov 2, 5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

Gala Jazz Reception
Rev. Dr. Dwight Andrews, Pastor and musician, will be our gracious host for a reception and Plenary #2 at First Congregational Church. The historic church in downtown Atlanta is across the street from the Sheraton, our Conference hotel. Pastor Andrews, a renowned musician, will provide the music portion of the evening, with REA members Dr. Lynne Westfield and Dr. Kathleen Turner completing a celebration of the arts during the reception and prior to Yolanda Smith’s address, also at the church. (More…)

Saturday, Nov 3, 8:00 a.m. – 3:15 p.m.

Engaging Social Justice Through Art: Creating the REA Signature Quilt
Grace Yun, InterRelations Collaborative
Patricia Maunder, Stories Through Art

Dr. Grace Yun of the University of Connecticut, Greater Hartford Campus, directs the InterRelations Collaborative, Inc., a research and education group which builds cross-cultural alliances among rapidly diversifying student populations at schools and universities.  She initiated the 9/11 Peace Story Quilt project with Faith Ringgold, Distinguished Professor of Art at the University of California, San Diego.  During the meeting, Grace and Visual Arts Educator, Patricia Maunder will guide us in creating our own REA signature quilt. (More…)

Saturday, Nov 3, 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.

Poster Presentations
As a graphically based approach to presenting research, a poster has become common format for presentations at academic meetings in the sciences and increasingly in the humanities. Digital media is sometimes combined with graphics and text for projects lending themselves to the mix. Posters will be displayed with the Exhibits and Bookstore. Authors will be present to discuss their research with interested viewers on Saturday, 8:00-9:00 a.m., and posters will remain on display for the rest of the day.

Saturday, Nov 3, 9:00 – 10:15 p.m.

Welcome to Shelbyville
The video Welcome to Shelbyville (screening Saturday, 9:00 p.m.) features the efforts of Welcoming Tennessee, the model for all subsequent Welcoming America campaigns, as its local partners in Shelbyville, TN work to unite a community dealing with rapid demographic change. Set against the backdrop of a shaky economy, Welcome to Shelbyville takes an intimate look at a southern town as its residents – whites and African Americans, Latinos and Somalis – grapple with their beliefs, their histories and their evolving ways of life. The film was viewed by an estimated 1.3 million viewers on May 24, 2011 during the national PBS screening.

Watch an introduction to the film: