Convocation 2021

We Are God's Soil:
Spiritual Leadership in a Climate-Changed World

Thursday, September 30 - Friday, October 1

$50 • Individual registration

$30 • Bangor Theological Seminary alumni discount rate
To encourage collaboration following the event, we are offering a $5 discount to anyone attending as part of a team from a congregation or organization. Also, with hopes of making Convocation accessible to everyone, we are offering an unlimited number of full scholarships. Simply click the $0 payment option and we will be happy to welcome you for free.

Register now to receive the BTS Box

We are excited to offer a BTS Box filled with useful materials and delightful surprises meant to enhance the Convocation experience to the first 150 people who register before Tuesday, September 21.  

We Are God's Soil:
Spiritual Leadership in a Climate-Changed World

“A cloak of loose, soft material, held to the Earth’s hard surface by gravity, is all that lies between life and lifelessness.”

—Wallace H. Fuller, PhD, soil scientist, 1975

Scientists tell us that soil is the top layer of the earth’s surface, consisting of rock and mineral particles, enriched with decayed organic matter, inhabited by living organisms, aerated with gases, having the capacity to retain water.

Soil by itself does not act — rather it forms the fertile container, the nutrient-rich vessel, the arable ground within which other things can grow.
Soil is both teeming with life and essential for the sustaining of life.
And yet, human beings have exploited earth’s resources and destroyed our common home. Rather than embracing God’s directive to steward the earth — to care for it, to preserve and protect it, to prioritize our fundamental interdependence with all living things and with the earth itself — instead, without much thought, we’ve settled into resource-depleting ways of living that keep us caught in a pernicious cycle of domination, extraction, and consumption.
Climate change is no longer the science community’s prediction for the future. We are living in a climate-changed world — a world that raises provocative questions:
    • How might we grieve the losses of the world we once knew and embrace an abused and broken Mother Earth?
    • How might we rearrange our lives, our priorities, our resources, and our relationships in a climate-changed world?
    • How might faith communities adopt supportive, comforting, and prophetic practices in a climate-changed world?
    • How might congregations welcome the stranger, the displaced, and the migrant in a climate-changed world?
    • What do inclusiveness, justice, and equity look like in a climate-changed world?
    • How will we — spiritual leaders in many different contexts — maintain determination, courage, and empathy in this climate-changed world?

Join us for Convocation 2021. Over the course of two days this fall, we’ll gather for online sessions, and we’ll log off for some intentional, self-guided, offline sessions, returning to digital space for continued learning and reflection. Incorporating music, the arts, and contemplative practice, Convocation 2021 will inspire and challenge us to ground our spiritual leadership in the common good and in the sacredness of our planetary home. We look forward to this blend of online and offline experiences, which will weave together to facilitate learning, nurture respite, and deepen community.

Held annually, continuously since 1905, Convocation is a legacy program of Bangor Theological Seminary, predecessor to The BTS Center. We are delighted to carry on this tradition, 116 years in the making, drawing upon the enduring wisdom of the generations of leaders who have come before us.

During this year’s Convocation, we pray that God will till the soil — us —and plant seeds for a future that is not our own.

Special Pre-Convocation Event for Alumni of Bangor Theological Seminary

Wednesday, September 29 • 4:00-5:30pm (Eastern) • via Zoom

Participate in Convocation 2021 for CEUs (continuing education units)!