COURSES

These courses seek to make academic theology accessible and present a blend of the more traditional 'academic' approach with the fun and wonder of genuine exploration. Get in touch to get a course overview or to register your interest in taking a course.

The Marilynne Robinson Course: Rethinking Theology, Embracing the Ordinary

Reading Marilynne Robinson is life changing and vision altering. In this course Andrew Cunning takes participants through Robinson's work from Housekeeping (1980) to Jack (2020) with a focus on Robinson's remarkable contribution to an ancient and sacred conversation.

We explore the theological significance of the ordinary, debate the ethics of predestination and seek Robinson's wisdom on the intersections between religion and science; politics and literature; race and the Bible. 
 
No previous experience of Robinson is necessary, so long as participants are prepared to read her work as we go. The course is a blend of academic inquiry and childlike exploration of beautiful things, and the only prerequisite is curiosity.

This course is starting on 3rd October on Zoom. Be sure to email soon to book your place. £85 per person. 

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Joining the Conversation: An Introduction to Theological Thinking

Wednesday 13 October ~ Session 1: The Ongoing Conversation
In this session we look at how people talk ‘about’ theology, and how people talk ‘in’ theology, and we examine our own starting points: where are we in the conversation and what we uniquely bring to it.

Wednesday 20 October ~ Session 2: The Sources of Theology
In this session we go back to basics. What are we talking about when we talk about theology? What is someone ‘doing’ when they ‘do theology’? How might we do it too? Through exploring the four sources of theology (Reason, Experience, Scripture and Tradition) and examining their relationship, this session sets us up to ‘do theology’ in our own way.

Wednesday 27 October ~ Session 3: Using Texts
Building on Session Two, this week we turn to how we read, why we need texts and, possibly, why sometimes we don’t. In this session we look closely at how the Bible is positioned within our own theology, with an eye to exploring why the Bible has been dominant in much theology done in NI.

Wednesday 03 November ~ Session 4: Theology and the Senses
In the final session we bring our whole person to the task of theology, heart, soul, mind and strength. We will deliberately and intentionally bring sensory experience to the foreground this week as we explore how our bodies, memories, desires and stories can be invaluable foundations for our theological thinking.

The cost of this course is £40 for the four weeks. (Harbour will be happy to offer a 50% subsidy for low-income or unemployed applicants - just ask when you email)

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Spaces are limited to 12 and the cost is £40. 

Email Andrew to Book! 
acunning01@qub.ac.uk

Faith in Four Forms

Isn't God meant to have gone away? 

Apparently not!

Some of our best theologians in the 21st century are our novelists, poets and artists. In this course we explore Christian theology and Christian ideas through novels, poems and essays written in our time.

 

Over the four weeks we engage with important questions around 'what is theology?' 'what role does story have within Christianity?' 'is theology an art form?'

 

Weekly talks for each text will be provided ahead of the 90 minute discussion session each week. The reading is carefully selected and ordered to avoid too much in one go!

 

Week 1: Life of Pi, Yann Martel 

Week 2: Almost Everything, Anne Lamott

Week 3: Magdalene, Marie Howe

Week 4: Beautiful World, Where Are You? Sally Rooney

This course is officially *Under Construction* and will be open for participants in early 2022. 

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‘What a brilliant way to indulge your love of Marilynne Robinson. The course was wonderfully put together and led by Andrew, a really worthwhile and enjoyable way to spend a few weeks!’

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'The course has given me so much more of an angle on Marilynne Robinson and I'm pleased I have the brilliant videos to go through again as I read more of her work.'

Course Participants