Next week, around 400 clergy will spend two days at Liverpool Hope University for their first residential conference in the Diocese of Leeds.
One of the programme’s highlights is a dialogue between two eminent scientists: Professor Brian Cox (left) and Professor David Wilkinson (right).
Bishop Nick says, “Brian Cox is an atheist who refuses to be put in a New Atheist box; David Wilkinson is both a scientist and theologian. I have invited them to present a paper each on ‘science, the cosmos and human meaning’ before engaging in discussion. This must be one of the most urgent and important discussions for all clergy who live in today’s media-driven world, finding a way through the ideological, philosophical and ethical debates that rage (sometimes everywhere but in the Church). We will all learn not only about the vital theme, but also about how to have such debates intelligently.”
Other speakers include the Dean of Salisbury, the Very Revd June Osborne, and Bible studies will be led by the Bishop of Liverpool, the Rt Revd Paul Bayes, and the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Liverpool, the Most Revd Malcolm McMahon.
Entertainment will be provided by comedian Andy Kind, and the after dinner speaker is Catherine Fox – novelist and lecturer in creative writing at Manchester Metropolitan University.
Bishop Nick adds, “It’s appropriate that we shall be meeting at a university called Hope. Clergy are called to be agents and articulators of hope in a world where despair and fear too often command our attention. I look forward to a wonderful time in Liverpool”.
The conference takes places from 6-8 September. Watch the website for daily updates and links to bloggers.