Symposium Sneak Peek #4: Will Schumacher

2014 Theological SymposiumThe 2014 Theological Symposium is fast approaching (September 23-24), and we thought we’d give the world a sneak peek into the four plenary presentations that will be given over the two days. They will all, of course, be centered in the theme, “Faithful Witness to God’s Story in the World Around Us: Bringing a Unique Perspective to Common Human Experiences.”

The final plenary will be given by William Schumacher. Here’s the official synopsis:

“Faithful Witness in Work and Rest”

Another common experience we share with all people is the need for both work and rest. As Lutherans we know well how to speak about vocation–embracing life in the world and valuing our instrumental roles in creation. But in our modern fast-paced, rat-race existence, _rest_ is hard to come by. We work to live and live to work. Does our theology give an account of the blessing of leisure and things we do just for pleasure? Can we give faithful witness out of the enjoyment of beauty and artistry? While vocation gives witness as service to the neighbor, the mode of witness that arises from such “rest” is thanks and praise.

And here’s what Professor Schumacher has to say about it:

William Schumacher“There is a unique Christian (and deeply Lutheran) witness to the value of work, the dignity of ordinary human labor and responsibility, expressed in the idea of vocation. A common distortion of this witness is the so-called ‘Protestant work ethic,’ where work is the only valid expression of genuine faith and where God only values our work. And yet, the Reformation movement wasn’t just a bunch of killjoys. It deeply cherishes the value of rest and leisure, not apart from vocation, but as part of it. So I’ll be working within our wonderful vocabulary of vocation, but to see it in ways beyond simply what we do for work. I want to liberate vocation from mere employment and occupation so that we can experience play and rest as gifts from our Creator.”

For more information on the 2014 Theological Symposium, click here.

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