St. Andrew's Study Trust events in October & November
The Off-label Beliefs of Religion
Tuesday 11 October, 12:15 to 1pm, St Andrew's on The Terrace
The recent work of scientists, anthropologists and sociologists is compiled in this lecture to bring to the fore the exact things that a community needs to be good at in order to do the work of transforming the relationships individuals have with themselves, those around them, the world and the future.
Gretta Vosper has served West Hill United, a congregation of The United Church of Canada located in Scarborough, Ontario, for over nineteen years.
With the leadership of the congregation, she has transitioned West Hill beyond dogma and created a theologically barrier-free community known around the world for its ground-breaking work. West Hill is featured in the documentary Godless and the upcoming film, Losing My Religion, by Zoot Media.
In an act of solidarity with secular Bangladeshi bloggers identified as atheists, arrested and threatened with execution, Gretta identified as an atheist in 2013. Recently, the United Church has initiated a review of Gretta’s effectiveness as a minister based on her atheistic beliefs.
Gretta is the author of the national bestseller, With or Without God: Why the Way We Live is More Important that What We Believe, and Amen: What Prayer Can Mean in a World Beyond Belief, an exploration of prayer stripped of supernatural expectations. Additionally, she has published three collections of poetry and continues to write new lyrics to traditional hymns. She is working on a lectionary based worship resource for clergy seeking post-theistic resources. Non-exclusive inspirational liturgical and music resources prepared for use at West Hill - where those who hold traditional beliefs share the pews with others who don’t - are used internationally.
Gretta founded the Canadian Centre for Progressive Christianity in 2004. She serves on the Board of The Oasis Network, a growing network of secular communities. In the past she has served as a Director and Officer of The Clergy Project, an international network for clergy who no longer believe. Gretta also serves as a Governor of Centennial College.
You can visit her at www.grettavosper.ca
The Song Snatchers: Songs for rallies and marches.
St Andrew’s on the
Tuesday 8 November 2016
12.15pm - 1.15pm
Anyone who’s sung in a choir, at a ceremony or service, or even in an informal group at a party will know there is a power in people singing together, whether for pleasure, performance or some other purpose. Street demonstrations, pickets and marches often use singing - as well as the more pervasive chanting - to convey a message, buoy the demonstrators and build solidarity.
This session is a kind of musical essay, using talk, singing and composition to explore a few well-known songs for marches, but also introducing less-familiar numbers from New Zealand history, and the stories behind them. You will have the option of joining in on some of the songs, and with your help, the Song Snatchers will also create one or two new songs suitable for rallies and marches, on the spot. A guest singer will perform one of his own compositions.
The Song Snatchers are Anne Russell, David Johnstone, Jane Shallcrass, Marie Russell and Robin Brew. This group of old friends has been performing together in different combinations (mostly as ‘The Magpies’) over the past two decades, singing acapella folk songs, madrigals and anything else that took their fancy. More recently we have researched and presented performances of ‘musical essays’, such as “Songs of work and workers”, “Parodies and borrowed tunes” and “Singing from the same song sheet: ‘Music to schools’ broadcasts in New Zealand 1931–1979”.