THE PARISH MINISTERS' COLLOQUY is an effort to provide an

opportunity for parish ministers to engage in serious colloquizing about the world wide renewal of the Church in relation to the life and mission of the local congregation.

A radical corner has been turned in Western Civilization A new world is bursting into being all about us, in the midst of which the Church is agonizing to grasp anew her meaning and

missions. Now is an urgent moment for all awakened Christians and especially for the parish pastor who serves the front line troops of the Church.

MANY PARISH PASTORS TODAY struggle in desperate loneliness to maintain a life of faith and sense of mission, and are consumed with a deep need for community with other concerned pastors, where in ministering to one another they may find the courage to be who they must be and to do what they must do as servants of the Church in our time.

MANY PARISH PASTORS TODAY, knowing that theologizing is a life long enterprise that all must engage in personally, are increasingly frustrated as they experience the impossibility of seriously carrying on such study by one's self amid the busy life and pressures of the local church. They are therefore earnestly reaching out for continuing theological study and conversation with other pastors who have a like sense of urgency.

MANY PARISH PASTORS TODAY are acutely alert to a radically new world in our time with its inescapable demands for new and creatively different understandings of, and approaches to, the life and mission of the local church, yet feel hopelessly inadequate to accomplish this task alone and are seeking a group of similarly aware pastors who can together honestly face the questions and search for insights.

MANY PARISH PASTORS TODAY, clearly sensitive to the !act that for the Church to understand truly her own Gospel message and to perform genuinely her task of ministering unto the world, she must continually be engaged in an authentic dialogue with the culture about her. They are increasingly anxious to discover a situation wherein they may directly, with freedom and honesty, participate in such a mutual discourse between the Church and the world.

MANY PARISH PASTORS TODAY, have been forcefully caught up in the spirit of renewal in the Church throughout the world and are scanning the horizons for a point of interchange where they may involve their own ministry in a give­and­take fashion in the growing edge of the recovery and advancement of the Gospel in our time.

All of this points to the meaning and purpose of the Parish Ministers Colloquy. It is a gathering, for mutual discourse and genuine dialogue among those "many parish pastors today." It is for the sake of the needs they sense and the ends they seek as they serve the Church in this new reformation time.

NOT A FEW MEN TODAY experience their dilemma is that of creatures who were born to be free but are everywhere in chains. Nature for them is a power whose iron laws or chance throws of the dice decide the time and place and race endowment of the child at birth. History, whether interpreted as the realm of determination or of chance, moves on its way like a tide carrying individual drops and waves of water to melt into the sands or to disappear on the horizon. Social forces, economic movements, machines and inventions that neither inventors nor statesmen can control, biological movements multiplying populations despite leagues for planned parenthood, psychological powers mysteriously hidden beyond the reach of consciousness-these and many other lesser forces direct the course of life and determine its destiny. And God is a God who hides himself. They are not unbelievers, these men; but for them the dominions, principalities, powers and rulers of the darkness of this world have a reality that makes the difference between ancient and modern mythologies of little importance. The cry for salvation that such men make is the cry for freedom from bondage, or to use a contemporary phrase, from the 'other­directedness' and heteronomy of existence, from the life of mass­man.

"AS IT BECOMES AWARE of the specific form in which ultimate human problems present themselves in our own time, the ministry, and therewith the schools that prepare men for it, begin to understand more sharply what the pastoral function is, in what language the gospel speaks to this need, and what form the Church must take in serving such men in such a time."

H. Richard Niebuhr, The Purpose of the Church and its Ministry


Program of Studies

February 16­17­18 SESSION ONE Mon. Tues. Wed.

Seminar Subject

THEOLOGY-the meaning of the God­relation in christian faith

MINISTRY-the problems of worship in the local ch'

Guest Lecturer-Dr. Schubert Ogden of Perkins School Theology, Southern Methodist University

"New Methodology in Contemporary Theology"

Art Form-Movie: "Moby Dick" from the novel by Herman Melville

March 16­17­18 SESSION TWO Mon. Tues. Wed.

Seminar Subject

THEOLOGY-the meaning of the revelatory­event in christian faith

MINISTRY-the problem of education in the local ch

Guest Lecturer-Dr. Don Weismann of the Art Department, University of Texas

"The Change in the Weltbilt of Contemporary Art"

Art Form-Movie: "The Shrike" from the play by Joseph Kramm

April 20­21­22 SESSION THREE Mon. Tues.

Seminar Subject

THEOLO(3Y-the meaning of the free life in the christian faith

MINISTRY-the problem of fellowship in the local church

Guest Lecturer-Dr. John Silber of the Philosophy Department, University of Texas

"The Present Situation in Contemporary Philosophy"

Art Form-Movie: "Heart of the Matter" from the novel by Graham Greene

May 18­19­20 SESSION FOUR Mon. Tues. Wed.

Seminar Subject

THEOLOGY-the meaning of disrelation in the christian faith

MINISTRY-the problem of mission in the local ch

Guest Lecturer-Dr. William Arrowsmith of the Department of Classical Languages, University of Texas

"Modern Anxiety in Contemporary Literature"

Art Form-Movie: "An Inspector Calls" from the novel of J. B. Priestley

THE COLLOQUY will involve two study courses: one on the­ theologizing of the Church in the present time in which the meaning of the Church's message will be examined in the light of the human situation where' over against the final reality, man stands before himself and his neighbor, the other, on the ministry of the local church in the present time in which we will attempt to understand the fundamental activities in the life and mission of the local congregation and ways and means for their renewal.

THE COURSES WILL INCLUDE both lectures and seminar sessions but the emphasis in time and intention will be upon the latter, gearing the whole program toward mutual discourse which is the meaning of colloquy. Serious study will be required of all participating. This will include both general background reading and more specific preparation in relation to the articles to be discussed in the seminars. It is expected that the basic study will be done before the meeting, though some time has been set aside in the Colloquy for private reflection. ~

THE WHOLE COLLOQUY is a practical experiment in the direction of a new approach to group ministry. It is an effort to discover how, though separated by geography and specific tasks we may support each other in the wrestlings of spirit thought and strategy. The hope is that, by our common living and thinking and sharing we may arrive at new and very concrete possibilities for the life and mission in the local church and the ministry of the pastor to it, and thereby creatively contribute to the response that the whole Church of Jesus Christ is making to the mighty acts of God in our time.


The colloquy will be held at the Christian Faith­and-Life Community's Laos House at 700 West 19th Street which is the Old Wooten Mansion. The nicely appointed rooms and carefully prepared meals along with the atmosphere of the old house provide a pleasant setting for the discussions. Groups as small as 10 or as large as 40 can be comfortably accommodated.


The colloquy will be led by an inter­denominational group ministry composed of clergymen from several denominations: Joseph W. Mathews (Methodist), Joseph A. Slicker (Presbyterian, U.S.), and John Lee Smith (Southern Baptist). In addition, guest lecturers will be involved in each session, including Dr. John Silber of the University of Texas, Dr. Schubert Ogden of Perkins School of Theology, S.M.U., Dr. Don Weismann of the University of Texas, and Dr. William Arrowsmith of the University of Texas.

cost and time

The colloquy will meet once a month, four times: February through May. Each session will last two full days beginning at noon on Monday and closing after lunch on Wednesday, which will involve accommodations for two nights and seven meals. Tuition for all four sessions is sixteen dollars. The cost for room and meals is the nominal sum of nine dollars per session.