WordAlone Convention: The WordAlone Network’s Annual Convention will be held April 26-27 at Calvary Lutheran Church in Golden Valley, MN. The theme of the convention is evangelism: The Main Thing: Proclaim Jesus!:
Much of the ELCA's attention is focused on the 2009 churchwide assembly and the potentially momentous decisions of that assembly.Many are asking what people and churches ought to do in light ofthe ELCA's struggles. As important as those questions and the churchwide assembly are, we ought not neglect "the main thing"- being evangelists for Christ Jesus and His Gospel.
The keynote address (How will they hear? Feet first in the mission of God, Romans 10:14-15 will be delivered by Pr. Charles Lindquist, General Director, World Mission Prayer League, Minneapolis, MN.The annual gathering of Lutheran CORE will be April 27 at 3:30PM. See the registration form for details.

Coulda Been a Contender?: On May 1 and 2, Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Ind., will host Contending for the Faith in the Twenty-First Century:
Integral to the task of Christian witness in a secular and pluralistic culture is the ability to articulate and defend the truthfulness of the Gospel. Concordia Theological Seminary is, therefore, pleased to offer “Contending for the Faith in the Twenty-First Century.”
The goal of this conference is simple: to encourage and equip Christians for the task of “always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks for the reason for the hope among us” (1 Peter 3:15). Presentations will be made on a variety of topics from atheism to Islam as well as historical, contemporary, and the practical considerations of Christian witness. Attendees can expect to leave the conference with greater confidence, understanding, and insight into the nature and task of Christian witness in the public sphere.

Among the topics and speakers are:
Dr. Adam S. Francisco, Contending for the Faith Through the Centuries (in an Hour);
Dr. Jeff Mallinson, Cruciform Apologetics;
Dr. Angus Menuge, Exposing the Materialist Delusion: How Human and Divine Agency Survive the Materialist Onslaught;
Sam Shamoun, Answering Muslim Objections to the Christian Faith;
Dr. Steven Mueller, Imaginative Apologetics: C.S. Lewis and the Defense of the Christian Faith
and Craig Parton, A Lawyer Amongst the Artists: Legal and Literary Apologetics.
Registration for the two-day retreat is $50 and includes lunch and refreshments. To register, call the seminary at 260-452-2100 or send an e-mail to retreats@ctsfw.edu.

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Pr. Sophie is all a-Twitter. Again.
Pr. Sophie's Tweets:

    Hot Dish Hotline: "We cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard." What have you seen or heard that other people really need to know about? Use the Hot Dish Hotline to submit your item online.

    Clergy Call 2009: On May 4-5, 2009, the Human Rights Campaign will host Clergy Call 2009 in Washington, DC.
    The two-day event is an opportunity for religious leaders to be agents of change for lesbian, gay, bisexual and, most particularly, transgender people. The first day is devoted to learning about the public policy issues facing the LGBT community and about making houses of worship more welcoming. The second day will be spent on Capitol Hill advocating for justice and equality in law and public policy.
    Registration for the two day event is free.

    Galileo and the Vatican: The Catholic News Agency reports on the publication of Galileo and the Vatican by Mario Artigas, who died in 2006, and Msgr. Melchor Sanchez de Toca(Marcianum Press).
    The 300-page book gathers together the documents of the Commission on Galileo (1981 - 1992) created by Pope John Paul II and, according to Cardinal Paul Poupard who headed up the study group, seeks to debunk the "black legend" that Galileo was burned at the stake and other myths about this case. In fact Galileo was found "vehemently suspect of heresy", (having held the opinions that the Sun lies motionless at the centre of the universe, that the Earth is not at its centre and moves, and that one may hold and defend an opinion as probable after it has been declared contrary to Holy Scripture). He was required to "abjure, curse and detest" those opinions, and he was sentenced to imprisonment (commuted to house arrest).
    Galileo and the Vatican has been published in Spanish and Italian and includes an introduction by Archbishop Gianfranco Ravasi, the current President of the Pontifical Council for Culture.
    Speaking of the judges who condemned Galileo's world view, Msgr. Sanchez de Toca said:
    They thought the Copernicus system defended by Galileo with such vehemence endangered the faith of simple people and that it was their obligation to prevent it from being taught. This was an error and it is necessary that it be acknowledged.
    Now about the effect of condoms on the spread of AIDS.

    Was tun, Herr Calvin?: Discipline was the topic of the first of five Streitgesprächen (loosely, debates) hosted by the German Historical Museum and the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD) in honor of the 500th anniversary of John Calvin's birth. Other topics are money, conflict, democracy, and images.
    The April 15 discussion featured Bishop Margot Käßmann of Hanover and Bernhard Bueb, author of Lob der Disziplin (In Praise of Discipline).
    Reminding the audience that "God's grace is not only for the strong and successful," Bishop Käßmann emphasized the problematic character of the Protestant work ethic:
    In Zeiten des Burn-out-Syndroms müssen wir uns fragen: Was haben wir mit diesem Ethos ausgelöst?
    What either of the speakers said about discipline has not been reported. We presume they did not see eye to eye.

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