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Registration for 2024 Evangelism Conference now open

Presbyterian Center to host ‘A Lifestyle That Exudes Justice’ Oct. 3-5

by Beth Waltemath | Presbyterian News Service

This year’s Evangelism Conference, planned by Theology, Formation & Evangelism, repents of “expressions of evangelism” that have “hurt people and promoted injustice” and encourages ways of embodying the good news that promote healing and compassion.

Registration for the “A Lifestyle That Exudes Justice” Evangelism Conference, to be held Oct. 3-5 at the Presbyterian Center in Louisville, Kentucky, is now open.

The Rev. Dr. Elaine A. Heath, co-author of “Trauma-Informed Evangelism: Cultivating Communities of Wounded Healers,” will offer plenary sessions on Thursday and Friday.

The Rev. Dr. Elaine A. Heath

“The church that reflects gospel priorities in the future will be the church that pays attention to the issues of social and environmental justice in the name and spirit of Jesus,” Heath writes in an earlier book, “The Mystic Way of Evangelism.” “Christian movements for human rights, civil rights and environmental justice will become stronger and more influential during the next decades of the 21st century,” she predicts.

The Rev. Dr. Debra J. Mumford

The Rev. Dr. Debra J. Mumford, dean of Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, will preach on Thursday and Saturday. Three opportunities for in-person workshops and a panel discussion of the conference leaders will take place in between. Workshop topics will revolve around the themes of teaching, preaching, health, healing and compassion.

“An important part of the conference will be equipping participants to preach and teach justice as a lifestyle,” said the Rev. Carlton Johnson, associate director of Theology, Formation & Evangelism. “Through this lifestyle of hope, we can heal ourselves and heal our land.”

The Rev. Neema Cyrus-Franklin, associate for the Around the Table initiative, will lead a workshop on opportunities from evangelism and social justice to equipping people in the work of faith formation at home. The Rev. Andries Coetzee, originally from South Africa, will lead the preaching workshop, while the Rev. Brooke Scott, a pastor and social worker, will co-lead a workshop on health and healing, exploring how Jesus focused on mental wellness in his ministry. A workshop offered in English and Spanish by the Rev. Elmer Zavala will draw on his experiences with Mid-Kentucky Presbytery’s Preston Highway Hispanic/Latino Presbyterian Ministry and consider how compassion invites people into the good news.

The Vital Congregations Initiative’s manager, the Rev. Veronica Cannon, will dive deeper into the mark of “intentional authentic evangelism” within vital churches and will make connections with how the initiative supports congregations in lives that exude justice.

Recordings of five workshops will be available for in-person and virtual registrants.

Conference events begin Thursday afternoon on Oct. 3. Rates for hotels within walking distance are available through the registration website.

Registration is open through September.

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