St. Stephen’s is known for the quality, breadth and depth of speakers who visit the parish, including renowned theologians, writers, poets, and monks. Our speakers series has become a resource not only for this parish but for the larger church and the community.
Past speakers have included Barbara Brown Taylor, John Philip Newell, Harvey Cox, Anne Lamott, Mary Oliver, Jane Hirshfield, Jon Meacham, Becca Stevens, Martin Laird, Lauren Winner, Martin Smith, the brothers of the Society of St. John the Evangelist, and many others.
All events are open to the general public. You do NOT have to be a member of St. Stephen's to attend. Many, though not all, of these events have a suggested donation, but please do not allow this to be a barrier--see the information at the bottom of this page about suggested donations.
St. Stephen's also offers a variety of retreats and workshops, a poetry series, and the Sunday Forum meets at 10:10 a.m. in the Large Fellowship Hall between our 9 and 11:15 a.m. services. The Forum often welcomes guest speakers; more details about the Forum schedule for 2017-18 will be available here later this summer.
Books by our speakers are available in the Bookshop @ St. Stephen's.
A word about suggested donations
We suggest a donation of $25 to attend most events (unless noted otherwise); this usually covers the expenses of our bringing these outstanding writers, teachers and thought leaders to you. We want our speakers to be accessible to all, and we know that some people will be able to donate more than $25, and others less. If you plan to pay the suggested donation, you may reserve your place online. If you prefer to pay a different amount, please stop by the parish office to register, or call 804.288.2867.
John Philip Newell // The Celtic Vision of John Muir // Thursday, October 19, 7 p.m.
John Philip Newell is one of the foremost teachers and writers about Celtic spirituality in the world today, and it has been our honor to welcome him to St. Stephen's on several occasions. Demand for his teaching and preaching continue to grow, and though he has had to limit the number of appearances he makes in the United States, we are grateful that he will return to St. Stephen's this fall to speak about John Muir.
The patron saint of American environmentalism, Muir was born in Scotland in 1838 and moved to the United States as a child. He has been described as the archetype of humanity's oneness with the earth and was the most articulate and passionate advocate for what would become our system of national parks. John Philip will explore the Celtic vision at the heart of Muir's spirituality and invite us to be part of the relationship between loving the earth and protecting it.
John Philip's visit follows presentations by Fred Bahnson (Soil and Sacrament) Heber Brown (Black Church Food Security Network) on "Food and the Beloved Community" (September 16). You can hear them here. And you can listen to Fred Bahnson's Sunday Forum talk (September 17) here.
Also coming this year
Father Martin Laird: Advent retreat, Saturday, December 2, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Registration coming soon
Eben Alexander, Author of Proof of Heaven: lecture, Friday, January 19, and workshop, Saturday, January 20, 2018; co-sponsored with Chrysalis Institute and the Institute on Noetic Sciences REGISTER THROUGH CHRYSALIS
Natasha Trethewey, former U.S. Poet Laureate: poetry reading, talk, book signing, Thursday, January 25, 7 p.m. Tickets are required; they are free, but donations are welcome.
Br. Luke Ditewig, SSJE: Lenten retreat, Friday, February 16 and Saturday, February 17; additional information and registration available soon
The Rev. Becca Stevens, Magdalen and Thistle Farms: workshop, Saturday, March 17; additional information and registration available soon
Please call the parish office at 804.288.2867 if you have questions.