Pitt Street is an active participant in the Common Dreams Australian/New Zealand network of religious progressives. Common Dreams brings speakers to Australia each year (Common Dreams on the Road) and presents a major conference every three years. The fifth International Common Dreams Conference was held in Sydney (at Pitt Street and at Newington College) in July 2019. For more information see the Common Dreams website.
Common Dreams 2019, a conference for advocates of spirituality and social change, was held in Sydney 11-14 July 2019.
Chief among those advocates was keynote speaker Matthew Fox, exponent of Creation Spirituality, activist and prophetic witness for social, environmental and gender justice.
He was joined by speakers including Joel McKerrow on The Poetics of the Sacred Imagination, Margaret Mayman on Holding Hope and Acting Up, and Rod Bower on Common Home and a Just Society.
Electives ranged from post colonialism and Aboriginal reconciliation to religious naturalism.
Artists included Heather Price, Rachel Collis, Alex Sangster and the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Choir.
Common Dreams on the Road - July 2018
We were delighted to have the Prof Joe Bessler as our Australia/New Zealand Common Dreams on the Road tour from Friday 27 to Sunday 29 July 2018. The Common Dreams programme ran from Friday evening to Saturday afternoon, and Professor Bessler preached at the Pitt Street Sunday gathering at 10 am.
Professor Bessler's is Professor of Theology at Phillips Theological Seminary in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
His theological specialty is religion and culture. He is author of A Scandalous Jesus: How Three Historic Quests Changed Theology for the Better.
Festival event – ‘Theology in the Age of Trump’ - 27-07-2018 - Prof Joe Bessler
'Christian Platonism - The Rise and Fall of the Christian Myth' - 28-07-2018 - Prof Joe Bessler
'Reflections on the Future of Theology' - 28-07-2018 - Prof Joe Bessler
'The virtues of a questionable faith' - 28-07-2018 - Prof Joe Bessler
'Prayer and Practice for contemporary followers of Jesus' - 28-07-2018 - Prof Joe Bessler
'Telling a new creation story: a spirituality for living and loving earth' - 28-07-2018 - Rev Dr Jason John
'The futures - religious and secular: craft a two-minute story of solutions, with help from Donald Trump' - 28-07-2018 - Rev Dr Jason John
Bio information is on the Westar Institute website.
Faith Futures Festival - October 2017
Rev Dr Hal Taussig was the keynote speaker at the Pitt Street Faith Futures Festival.
Hal is a New Testament theologian and a consultant pastor specialising in revitalising ‘mainstream’ congregations. His latest book, A New New Testament, invites readers to seek a fresh approach to the gospel of Jesus Christ through exploration of early Christian texts that were not included in the New Testament.
Lecture: "New Reformation: Recovering lost wisdom, inspiring new paths"
Lecture: " A New New Testament and Futures of Progressive Christianity"
Workshop: "Disrupting Worship: challenges for contemporary gatherings via the imaginative, diverse, passionate and festive gatherings of the early Christ people"
Testing Tradition, Liberating Theology - July 2016
A lecture and conversation by Dr Val Web covering themes from her latest book Testing Tradition, Liberating Theology: finding your own voice.
Val Webb holds a PhD in theology. She was born in Brisbane and lived for thirty years in the USA. She previously held executive positions in the Uniting Church in Australia. She has taught religious studies and world religions at universities in the USA & Australia and is the author of eleven books.
Common Dreams on the Road - May 2016
Rev Dr Robin Meyers was the keynote speaker for "Common Dreams on the Road: Saving Jesus from the Church." He is the senior minister at the Mayflower Congregational (United Church of Christ) in Oklahoma, Professor of Social Justice at Oklahoma City University and a Fellow of the Jesus Seminar.
Saving Jesus from the Church
The Underground Church
God Talk - re-uniting science and religion
John Dominic Crossan - September 2012
Dr John Dominic Crossan presented a series of talks at Pitt Street Uniting Church during his visit to Australia in 2012.
Professor Crossan was hosted by the Eremos Institute, Pitt St Uniting Church and the Progressive Christian Network of Victoria.