We recently hosted an inspiring ‘Hearts and Minds’ day conference, in conjunction with Regent’s and South Wales Baptist Colleges. We heard some excellent papers from ministerial and other colleagues who are engaged in ongoing research and reflection.

A personal highlight for me (and I was unable to attend all the papers, due to parallel sessions) included a paper on disability theology by Revd Martin Hobgen, who drew our attention to the historic shifts in societal attitudes towards disability, and offered a theology of friendship as a possible paradigm for a more inclusive church.

The keynote address was given by Revd Dr Ian Stackhouse, who reflected with honesty and clarity on a family encounter with dementia, and offered theological insights around the issues of presence and personhood in this context.

The conference was well-attended, and a straw poll at the end of the day indicated a definite appetite for another one next summer. Watch this space!

Revd Dr Helen Paynter
Coordinator, Community Learning