The Calvin W. Didier Annual Seminar on Religion and Contemporary Thought

*The CALVIN W. DIDIER ANNUAL SEMINAR on Religion and Contemporary Thought is a study opportunity typically comprised of a weekend event  presenting an opportunity for participants to listen to and dialogue with an expert on a topic of current spiritual interest.  

Background:  The Calvin W. Didier Annual Seminar on Religion and Contemporary Thought was endowed in 1993 as a retirement tribute to Reverend Didier in honor of a ministry mindful of the many voices of the spirit and the profound changes we continue to experience in contemporary thought and culture.  This yearly seminar is dedicated to the spiritual growth through the best comprehensive thinking in religion, the arts, letters and science.  We seek to present inspiring and acknowledged leaders in their various fields. 

Didier Seminar 2015

“In every age the Spirit speaks.
To remain vital, it must be interpreted and reinterpreted
in every generation.”

The Didier Seminar for Religion and Contemporary Thought is pleased to announce that the Rev. Dr. Marilyn Salmon, Episcopal Priest, Professor of New Testamant Emerita, and former student of Marcus Borg, will be our 2015 seminar speaker.


Jesus Then and Now

Friday, February 20, 7:30 to 9 p.m.

Memories, Conversions, Convictions:
Reflections on a faith journey based on the book Convictions by Marcus Borg.

Saturday, February 21, 9 a.m. to 12 noon

Bringing the Kingdom of God Near:
Jesus’ Mission and Ours.

Salvation In The Present Tense:
A Biblical Perspective.

Sunday, February 22, 10 a.m. worship

The Rev. Dr. Salmon will preach.
Question and answer session following worship.

Register by February 16: $15 per person.
Space limited. Advance registration recommended.
Register here OR outside the Kirk Parlour on Sundays
OR in the church office, 651-227-6311.
Students $5 at the door with valid I.D.

We are sad to announce the death of Dr. Marcus Borg on January 21, 2015


Marcus Borg’s Book, "Convictions" is in: Buy your copy of his
spiritual autobiography, Convictions, in the
Kirk Parlour hallway on Sunday mornings, or in the
church office: at the discounted price of $20.

 House of Hope members share their
spiritual autobiographies:

o January 28, 7 p.m.: Joey Horstman
o February 4, 7 p.m.: Julia Carlson
o February 11, 7 p.m.: Margie Crone, Stephen Brachlow

Book Discussion Groups:
- Discuss it in one of your groups, for example:
neighborhood dinner group, Bible study group,
parent group, book group or another.
- Gather a group of friends or neighbors to discuss it.
- Join us in Enrichment, Sunday February 15. We’ll
create small circles for you to share your thoughts and questions.


Past Speakers and Topics:

  • 1998 - Rev. Dr. J. Andrew Overman - "Jews and Christians - How Did We Start and Where are We Headed?"
  • 1999 - Rev. Dr. Marcus Borg - “Jesus in Contemporary Scholarship”
  • 2000 - Dr. Richard Horsley -” Jesus Paul and the New World Order”
  • 2001 - Rev. Dr. Calvin Roetzel, Rev. Dr. Marilyn Salmon, Rabbi Barry Cytron- “ Contemporary Biblical Scholarship: What Have We Learned and What Does It Matter?”
  • 2002 - Dr. Elaine Pagels - “ The Challenge of the Gospel of Thomas: Different Views of Jesus and His Message”
  • 2003 - Dr. Gordon Kaufman - “How  Do We Do Theology Today? : Serendipitous Creativity”
  • 2004 - Dr. Dominic Crossan -” The Historical Jesus and the Kingdom of God Then and Now”
  • 2005 - Rev. Dr. ( Sir) John Polkinghorne -”Belief in God in an Age of Science"
  • 2006 - Dr. Don Swearer - “Buddhism”
  • 2007 - Rev. Dr. Martin Marty - “Must Faiths Collide?”
  • 2008 - Dr. Philip Jenkins - “The Next Christendom”
  • 2009 - Dr. Imam Seyyed Hossein Nasr -” The Heart of Islam”
  • 2010 - Rev. Dr. Cynthia Bourgeault - “Meditation and Visionary Seeing in the Christian Tradition”
  • 2011 - Dr. Wilson Yates, Prof. Michael Dennis Browne, and Dr. Stephen Paulus - "Theology, Spirituality, and the Arts." Rev. David Miller and Dr. David Miller - "Light in Deepest Night" (A Lenten Meditation, based on writings of Julian of Norwich)
  • 2012 - John Philip Newell - A New Harmony: The Spirit, The Earth, and the Human Soul"
  • 2013 - Professor Paul Knitter - "Must My God be Bigger than your God?" (Moving Beyond Competition to Cooperation).
  • 2014 - Dr. Amy-Jill Levine - Jesus, Judaism and Christianity.