Skip to main content

Responding Faithfully

 Storytelling for Social Action Banner

Register here:  http://  

Ours is a nation divided. In many parts of the country, entire communities and families have been divided over issues of injustice and inequity. As activists and allies in different contexts call for and make change, one area that provides unique opportunities–and tensions–to engage in justice work are communities of faith. 

In light of the most recent presidential election, faith communities have struggled to find the tools to amplify their voices about the most pressing issues facing our nation. Over the first 100 days of the new Presidential administration, Faith Matters Network, in partnership with the S carritt Bennett Center and Vanderbilt Divinity School, will be hosting a series of critical public theology retreats geared toward empowering clergy and laypeople to speak out about three of the most contentious political issues in our public life: racial justice, immigration, and environmental justice. 

Using storytelling and art, dream-mapping, and strategic planning, this series hopes to add depth and hold creative space for people of faith to engage in justice issues and organizing from their faith contexts.

These weekend-long events attempt to address the following questions:
• What is the connection between faith and political organizing?
• How can storytelling be a powerful tool for mobilizing your faith community to engage potentially polarizing political issues?
• What are the unique struggles and points of tension related to speaking out about challenging justice issues as people of faith, especially if you hold a position of leadership in your house of worship?
• Where are there opportunities for creative engagement, and what are the possibilities for next steps in your context?

This might be for you if...
• You identify as a person of faith 
• Are passionate about justice and making a difference
• Are thoughtful and open to learning
• Feel moved to speak out about one of the retreat topics, but aren’t sure how
• Are willing to take the risk to be vulnerable by sharing your story with others

**This workshop is 2 of 3 available workshops in this series. Learn more here:  http://

Commuter: Early bird rate - $100 ($150 after Feb. 17th), includes: Registration fee, tuition + taxes, meals/snacks

Residential: Early bird rate - $200 ($250 after Feb. 17th), includes: Registration fee, 2 nights lodging, tuition + taxes, meals/snacks

Deadline to Register is Friday, Feb. 24th, 2017. A limited number of full and partial scholarships are available! If you are interested in receiving a financial scholarship, please contact Erin Guzmán at


DIRECTIONS:  http://

WHEELCHAIR ACCESS: The Reading Room is on the 2nd floor of the Divinity School. Wheelchair accessibility come be found entering the building from the Ground Floor on the side of the building facing 21st Ave. and taking the elevator at the end of the hall. 

PARKING: Please park in Lot A or Lot B, off of 18th Avenue. See the map above for details. 

BUS: This location is reachable from the Hillsboro #7 bus. 

GENDER NEUTRAL RESTROOMS: Gender neutral restrooms are available in the building on the ground floor.

LANGUAGE: No Spanish or ASL translation provided. All handouts will be posted in the event page.

SCENT: We cannot guarantee the space will be scent-free; please do not wear perfumes, colognes or essential oils so that chemically injured community members can attend.

FLASH: Please do not take flash photography so that folks with epilepsy and other conditions are safe and empowered.

FEE: Commuter: Early bird - $100, $150 after Feb. 17th (Includes: Registration, tuition + taxes, meals/snacks); Residential: Early bird - $200, $250 after Feb. 17th (Includes: Registration, 2 nights lodging at the Scarritt Bennett Center, tuition + taxes, meals/snacks). Deadline to Register is Friday, Feb. 24th, 2017.

CHILDCARE: There is no childcare provided for this event.