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Latest Conference Talks

About the Talks

Annual Conference 2023

The Resurrection Experience

An examination of the circumstances of the Resurrection of Jesus and how it was experienced by the original witnesses, looking at the way in which we encounter the Risen Christ now.

Bishop Peter is seventy-one years old, married to Angie.  They have three sons all married and two grandchildren. He  was ordained deacon in 1975, priest in 1976, He served as curate in Wymondham, Norfolk, then as a Missionary Priest in Papua New Guinea in the early eighties.  Subsequently, +Peter worked as a Parish Priest in Norfolk, Devon and Oxfordshire, as well as General Secretary for the Melanesian Mission.   He and Angie returned to Papua New Guinea when Peter became Bishop of Port Moresby.

On returning from PNG a second time, the Foxes lived and worked in Norwich where +Peter was an Honorary Assistant Bishop and the Vicar of Old Lakenham and Tuckswood.  He retired in 2017.

He is currently the Bishop Of Leicester's Advisor on Deliverance Ministry and an Honorary Assistant Bishop in the Diocese of Leicester.

+Peter has been involved in Deliverance Ministry since 1975 and has a special interest in that work.  

Dr Rupert Sheldrake

Reasons for Hope in Recent Scientific Developments

At last, the dominance of mechanistic materialism in the sciences is waning.  In cosmology, the invisible realm vastly exceeds what can be known and measured, through the postulation of countless parallel universes, dark matter and dark energy.  In biology the “selfish gene” Neo-Darwinian theory of evolution is giving way to an extended evolutionary synthesis which includes epigenetic inheritance (the inheritance of acquired characteristics), giving a much great 

Rupert Sheldrake, PhD, is a biologist and author of more than a hundred technical papers and nine books, including The Science Delusion (called Science Set Free in the US). He studied Natural Sciences at Cambridge and the History and Philosophy of Science at Harvard. As a fellow of Clare College, Cambridge, he was Director of Studies in Cell Biology, and was also a research fellow of the Royal Society. He worked at the University of Malaya on tropical ferns, and in Hyderabad, India, as Principal Plant Physiologist at the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT). In India, he also lived for two years in the ashram of Fr Bede Griffiths in Tamil Nadu. From 2005-2010, he was Director of the Perrott-Warrick Project for the study of unexplained human and animal abilities, funded fromTrinity College, Cambridge. He is currently a fellow of the Institute of Noetic Sciences in California, of Schumacher College in Dartington, England and of the Temenos Acdemy in London. He lives in London and is married to Jill Purce, with whom he has two sons, Merlin, a mycologist and author of the bestselling book Entangled Life, and Cosmo, a musician. His web site is www.sheldrake.org

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Bishop Peter Fox

inheritance of acquired characteristics), giving a much great role for creativity within nature, as opposed to blind chance. In neuroscience and philosophy of mind, there has been an upsurge of panpsychist theories. In consciousness studies, research on altered states of consciousness, including in near death experiences, lucid dreams, psychedelic experiences and end of life experiences has greatly expanded the range of discussion.  The topic of conscious survival of bodily death is more widely considered than for many years.  In psychic research, evidence for the sense of being stared at, telepathy and precognition continues to accumulate, and sceptics are reduced to a position of dogmatic denial.  Perhaps most encouragingly, many spiritual practices have now been studied scientifically the results that show that people who have religious and/or spiritual practices are in general healthier, happier and live longer than those that do not.  Spiritual practices have measurable effects and the great majority are beneficial.  

Bishop Rowan Williams

Understanding and Misunderstanding Rebirth

When people discuss or reflect on post-mortem reality, the model of 'reincarnation' is often around - but do we always know what the word means? Both supporters and opponents of the idea may harbour confusions, and here we hope to try and disentangle a few of these, and look afresh at what a Christian perspective might entail.

Rowan Williams was born in Swansea into a Welsh-speaking family, and was educated at studies theology Christ's College. He studied for his doctorate – in the theology of Vladimir Lossky, a leading figure in Russian twentieth-century religious thought – at Wadham College Oxford, taking his DPhil in 1975. After two years as a lecturer at the College of the Resurrection, near Leeds, he was ordained deacon in Ely Cathedral before returning to Cambridge.

 

From 1977, he spent nine years in academic and parish work in Cambridge. In 1983 he was appointed as a lecturer in Divinity in the university, and the following year became dean and chaplain of Clare College. 1986 saw a return to Oxford now as Lady Margaret Professor of Divinity and Canon of Christ Church; he was awarded the degree of Doctor of Divinity in 1989, and became a fellow of the British Academy in 1990. He is also an accomplished poet and translator.

In 1991 Professor Williams accepted election and consecration as bishop of Monmouth, and in 1999 he was elected Archbishop of Wales. In July 2002, Archbishop Williams was confirmed as the 104th bishop of the See of Canterbury: the first Welsh successor to St Augustine of Canterbury and the first since the mid-thirteenth century to be appointed from beyond the English Church.

Dr Williams is acknowledged internationally as an outstanding theological writer, scholar and teacher. He has written extensively across a very wide range of related fields of professional study – philosophy, theology (especially early and patristic Christianity), spirituality and religious aesthetics. He has also written throughout his career on moral, ethical and social topics and, as archbishop, turned his attention increasingly on contemporary cultural and interfaith issues.

His interests include music, fiction and languages.

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Dr Claire Gilbert

Was I channelling Julian of Norwich?  Writing the fictional autobiography I, Julian.

 

Julian of Norwich, a 14th century woman mystic and writer, was the subject of Claire Gilbert’s doctoral thesis, but Julian turned into her spiritual companion and guide when Claire was diagnosed with myeloma, a cancer of the blood, in 2019.  Julian stayed with Claire through two and a half years of gruelling treatment, about which she wrote in letters to friends, in a voice she only discovered as she wrote about the treatment, praying it would transform her rather than be a source of bitterness and anger.  As the treatment came to an end Claire heard what can only be described as a call to tell Julian’s story with that same authentic voice.  Claire will talk about the experience of conceiving and writing the book, and read some excerpts.

Claire is a writer, retreat leader, and founder director of Westminster Abbey Institute under whose auspices she has written and edited several books relating to the ethics of public service, including Integrity in Public Life, The Power of Politicians, and Letters from Lockdown: sustaining public service values during the Covid-19 pandemic.  Formerly she was co-founder of St Paul’s (cathedral) Institute, adviser to the Church of England on environmental and medical ethics, and research fellow at the Centre of Medical Law and Ethics, King’s College London.  Her thesis is shortly being published by Routledge as a monograph entitled Julian of Norwich and the ecological crisis.  Her cancer letters are published as Miles to Go Before I Sleep (Hodder 2021) and her fictional autobiography I, Julian was published earlier this year, unexpectedly coincidental with the 650th anniversary of Julian’s visions.

in a voice she only discovered as she wrote about the treatment, praying it would transform her rather than be a source of bitterness and anger.  As the treatment came to an end Claire heard what can only be described as a call to tell Julian’s story with that same authentic voice.  Claire will talk about the experience of conceiving and writing the book, and read some excerpts.

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