I want to talk at Greenbelt….

I have just made the following submission to Greenbelt to speak at the Festival. I am delighted that this year the style will be in the form of 20-min TED talks. If you’ve never seen a TED Conferance talk, then you need to: short (<20 min), scriptless, powerful features which serve to inspire and challenge. I subscribe to the TED blog and get all kinds of technical, philosophical and interdisciplinary talks.

Traditional Evangelism strategies seem to focus solely on the intellectual arguments for God, for the need for Jesus and ignore the real reasons why people seek out the Paradise Promise: an emotional connection with the unseen, the sacred and meaning in their lives. There aren’t enough words to describe this movement of the heart and this is where the Sacrament life of the Church returns to fill the emotional void of mission. Based upon extensive work in alternative worship groups, youth work and real frontline evangelism with young people for whom a formal course would be meaningless, Fr. Simon Rundell, an Anglican Parish Priest in the Diocese of Exeter, seeks to raise our consciousness towards the mysterious, the sacramental and the numinous whilst connecting with those far outside the walls of the Church. The key question this year’s festival might want to ask is “what or whom are we saving paradise for?”, and how the traditions of the Church can shape the cutting edge of Gospel-shaped mission in the 21st Century.

Fr. Simon and the Blesséd Community are well known at Greenbelt for their wildly sacramental offerings in worship. He was written widely on Sacramental Alternative Worship and Sacramental Worship with Children and is currently developing materials for Frontline Evangelism with Young People.

I hope that this is the kind of thing that you and they are looking for. I’m not a real theologian (hey, I had to google apokatastasis yesterday) but I believe that my work, my writing and my mission is steeped in the practice of speaking of God (theologos), dripping with reflective practice; which means that even if it isn’t that academic, it at least is authentic and hopefully useful.