From January 15 through February 1, 2011, Michael Dowd moderated six 90-minute discussions among 4-5 Evolutionary Christianity thought leaders.

“Intimacy with the Divine”

Saturday, January 15
  • Mary Southard is a member of the Sisters of St. Joseph, a Roman Catholic order of women focusing on world hunger and ecological issues. She holds a BA in Art from Dominican University and an MA from Notre Dame. She is best known for her popular yearly Earth Calendars, first published in 1980.
  • Matthew Fox holds a doctorate in the History and Theology of Spirituality from the Institut Catholique de Paris and was a member of the Dominican Order for 34 years. He was expelled from the Order in 1993 by then Cardinal Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict XVI) for being an exponent of Creation Spirituality. Fox founded the University of Creation Spirituality and has authored 28 books including Original Blessing, The Coming of the Cosmic Christ, and A New Reformation.
  • Gail Worcelo is a Catholic nun and co-founder (with the late Thomas Berry) of Green Mountain Monastery, a new monastic community dedicated to the healing and protection of Earth and its life systems.  She holds degrees in Clinical Psychology and Christian Spirituality and is working on a new book, Moments of Grace, which explores the current evolutionary breakthrough in the long lineage of Catholic women’s religious communities.
  • Ursula King is Professor Emerita of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of Bristol and a vice president of the World Congress of Faiths. Her books include, Spirit of Fire: The Life and Vision of Teilhard de Chardin, Religion and Gender, and her most recent, The Search for Spirituality.
  • Paul Smith is co-pastor of Broadway Church in Kansas City, Missouri, where he has served for 47 years. Author of Integral Christianity: The Spirit’s Call to Evolve, and Is It Okay to Call God Mother? Considering the Feminine Face of God, he and his congregation were kicked out of the Southern Baptist Convention in 2003 for blessing gay and lesbian unions.

“The Evolution of Faith and Reason”

Tuesday, January 18
  • Karl Giberson is vice-president of the BioLogos Foundation, a new initiative founded by Francis Collins, aimed at helping Christians integrate their faith with contemporary science. He is also the director of the Forum on Faith and Science at Gordon College and on the faculty of Eastern Nazarene College, where he teaches the history of science. He is the author of Saving Darwin and several other books.
  • Ilia Delio is a senior fellow at Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University and author of ten books including, Christ in Evolution and Care for Creation, which won two Catholic Press Book Awards. She holds a doctorate in Pharmacology from the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at New Jersey Medical School and a doctorate in historical theology from Forham University. Her new book, The Emergent Christ: Exploring the Meaning of Catholic in an Evolutionary Universe, will be published in Spring 2011.
  • John Haught is a senior fellow of Science and Religion for Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University. He is the author of many books, including Making Sense of Evolution, God and the New Atheism, and Christianity and Science. He testified for the plaintiffs in the Dover ‘intelligent design’ trial.
  • Joan Roughgarden is an evolutionary biologist and founder of the Earth Systems Program at Stanford University. She holds a Ph.D. in biology from Harvard University and has authored more than 160 papers and eight books, including, The Genial Gene, Evolution’s Rainbow, and Evolution and Christian Faith.

“Deep-Time Eyes & Global Heart”

Saturday, January 22
  • John Cobb is a United Methodist theologian instrumental in the development of process theology. Author of 30 books, Cobb is a founder of The Center for Process Studies and has served as a visiting professor at Vanderbilt University, Harvard University, and the University of Chicago Divinity School.
  • Ross Hostetter is an attorney and former General Counsel of the Integral Institute. An advocate of Integral Christianity, he is co-founder and director of the Boulder Integral Center, in Boulder, Colorado.
  • Tom Thresher is the pastor of an evolutionary Christian congregation in western Washington and the author of Reverent Irreverence: Integral Church for the 21st Century, From Cradle to Christ-Consciousness. He holds a Masters in Economics and a Doctorate in Education from Stanford University and teaches at Bainbridge Graduate Institute, an MBA program in sustainable business.

“Evolving Church”

Tuesday, January 25
  • Gretta Vosper is the founder of the Canadian Centre for Progressive Christianity. She pastors West Hill United Church in Toronto and her bestselling book With or Without God: Why the Way We Live is More Important than What We Believe, made Amazon’s list of top 25 books that “caused a commotion.” She advocates that the Bible is not the authoritative word of God for all time and encourages churchgoers to drop dogmatic beliefs and cultivate a heart for the wellbeing of all life.
  • Brian McLaren was featured by Time magazine as one of America’s 25 most influential evangelicals. He is the board chair for Sojourners‘ Call to Renewal and a founding member of Red Letter Christians. His book A Generous Orthodoxy is widely considered a manifesto of the Emerging Church movement, and A New Kind of Christianity explores the intersection of Christian faith with contemporary culture and global crises.
  • Bruce Sanguin is a minister at Canadian Memorial United Church in Vancouver.  The author of Darwin, Divinity, and the Dance of the Cosmos, his latest book If Darwin Prayed synthesizes science, scripture, and poetry into 21st century prayers for congregational worship and personal devotion.
  • Ian Lawton is minister at C3 Exchange, a church that recently made national headlines for the controversial decision to remove the cross from their church. Ordained as an Anglican Priest, Ian’s work on the inner city streets of Sydney inspired him to take up the mantle of creating a more inclusive and inspirational Christianity.
  • Sally Morgenthaler is a best-selling evangelical author who has taught graduate and undergraduate courses in contemporary worship at Yale University, Asbury Theological Seminary, Bethany Theological Seminary, Fuller Theological Seminary, Baylor University, Oral Roberts University, and Texas Christian University.

“The Heavens and Earth Declare God’s Glory”

Saturday, January 29
  • Charles Townes was awarded the Nobel Prize in physics in 1964 for the invention of the laser. He was also awarded the 2005 Templeton Prize for his contributions to the understanding of religion in his essay, “The Convergence of Science and Religion.”
  • William Phillips was co-recipient of the Nobel Prize in physics in 1997. A professor of physics at the University of Maryland, he received his doctorate from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is a United Methodist layperson and a founding member of the International Society for Science and Religion.
  • Richard Rohr entered the Franciscans in 1961 and was ordained into the priesthood in 1970. He founded the New Jerusalem Community and the Center for Action and Contemplation. He is a contributor to Sojourners and the National Catholic Reporter.
  • Ken Miller is a professor of biology at Brown University and co-author of the most popular high school biology textbook in America. He chairs the education committee for the American Society of Cell Biology and serves as an advisor on life sciences to NewsHour on PBS. His book Finding Darwin’s God: A Scientist’s Search for Common Ground Between God and Evolution, addresses evolutionary theory and its relationship to religious views of nature. He also wrote Only a Theory: Evolution and the Battle for America’s Soul, which chronicled his role as a lead witness in the 2005 Dover ‘intelligent design’ trial.
  • Owen Gingerich is professor emeritus of Astronomy and the History of Science at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. He has served as the vice president of the American Philosophical Society, chairman of the U.S. National Committee of the International Astronomical Union, and a trustee of the John Templeton Foundation. Dr. Gingerich is active in the American Scientific Affiliation, a society of evangelical scientists. He is the author of God’s Universe.

“Science and Religion in Fruitful Partnership”

Tuesday, February 1
  • Linda Gibler is a Dominican Sister of Houston. She is Associate Academic Dean at the Oblate School of Theology in San Antonio, adjunct professor for the Loyola Institute for Ministry, and science editor  for the Collins Foundation Press.
  • Ted Davis is Professor of the History of Science at Messiah College. Past President of the American Scientific Affiliation: a fellowship of men and women of science and related disciplines who share a common fidelity to the Bible and a commitment to integrity in the practice of science.
  • Michael Morwood is a respected voice in Progressive Christianity with 40 years experience in retreat, education, parish and youth ministries. He is the author of Tomorrow’s Catholic; Praying a New Story; and Children Praying a New Story: A Resource for Parents, Grandparents and Teachers.
  • Jim Burklo is Associate Dean of Religious Life at the University of Southern California. Ordained in the United Church of Christ, he is a former pastor and leading voice in Progressive Christianity. Author of Open Christianity: Home by Another Road and Birdlike and Barnless: Meditations, Prayers, Poem, and Songs for Progressive Christians.