Why Christianity21?

Next fall, Doug and I are hosting a learning party in the Twin Cities for people who love Christ, love Christianity, and are interested in the future. The two of us have been given the microphone a lot in the past decade, and we began our event company with the express intent of giving the mic to others.

Our first few events have spotlighted one or two presenters, but for Christianity21, we wanted to follow the excellent example of TED Talks and give some of the most provocative and innovative voices in the faith 21 minutes each to communicate their passion. Some will give straight talks, others will use various media, still others will present 7 minutes each day, building their presentation throughout the event.

As you can see on the website, the presentations run the gamut of topics from theology to grassroots organizing to consumerism to ecclesiology to parenting. Although all of the voices are women, the topics are as broad as any Christian conference I’ve ever seen.

At our events, there is no “green room.” In other words, the presenters (whom we are calling “Voices”) won’t be hiding away when they’re not onstage. They, along with other Christian leaders, activists, publishers, and the like, will be mixing it up with everyone else. We hope/plan to build a true community at this gathering.

As I mentioned, all of the Voices are women. That’s not a gimmick, nor is it an affirmative action decision. Instead, it’s our attempt to catalyze a chemistry at an event that’s never been achieved before. It’s an attempt to do something different. (If you’re a guy (or a woman) who feels uncomfortable about that, probably all the more reason that you should be there!) And, as well as their presentations, all 21 of these Voices will be in a pulpit somewhere in the Twin Cities that Sunday morning, so you’ll get another chance to hear one or two of them.

We also thought it’s high time that speaker/authors like me, Doug, Joe Myers, Shane Claiborne, Peter Rollins and others should be sitting behind the registration table, handing out nametags. And that’s just where you’ll find us.

We’ve done everything we can to keep this event affordable. As you can imagine, flying in 21 speakers and paying their expenses does add up, but we’re working hard to raise sponsorship money to subsidize that. We’ve worked out a great deal on a hotel/breakfast combo, and we’re committed to keeping the registration at our events under $200.

So, if this sounds interesting to you, if you’re intrigued about the way the Christianity will be changing in coming days, if you’re keen to hear women get the mic for a few days, then consider joining us, October 9-11, for Christianity21.

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  • http://mattcleaver.com Matt Cleaver

    Wish I could be there. If it was one weekend later I could probably make it. Will there be video posted for all the world to see a la TED?

  • http://blakehuggins.com Blake Huggins

    Wish I could be there as well. Sounds like it is shaping up to be a great event. I’d also be interested in any video/audio remnants.

  • Jules

    I’m very focused on coming. Already in the works for me. Cannot wait to learn and connect with people I know, those I’m meeting now and those I have yet to meet. LOL ;)

  • Charles Cosimano

    “The monstrous regiment of women!” John Knox.

  • Brian Merritt

    Good show.

  • Brian Merritt

    For some reason my other comments didn’t come through. It looks like a great line up. I will have to see if I can get it on my schedule.

  • Angie

    Is this event filling up fast?
    I really would love to come but just can’t commit at this point since I am still looking for my next ministry position and have no idea where I will be next year.

  • http://talesfromthebeckleyviningstudio.blogspot.com/ robyn beckley vining

    I was so excited about this event when i first heard about it–esp since I’m driving distance! i checked it out immediately and go tmore excited. unfortunately, i will not be able to go due to cost. as a full-time mom, part-time photographer and wife to a pastor making near WIC-applicable wages, I can’t go. And that bothers me. I wish there were applications for scholarship, as so many of us moms have set aside wages for now so that we can raise kids. And I miss my days when my church of employment would pay for me to go to conferences (I used to be an employed pastor), but I don’t have that anymore.
    I wish that in the future, when these stellar events are planned, that subsidizing would take place up front so you could get a more socio-economically balanced crew to attend. Because $400 for a weekend, plus travel expenses, is a lot of money out of a family’s pocket.
    I hope it goes great. I hope a lot of people can go. I hope Phyllis brings the house down :)

  • http://makeesha.com Makeesha

    monstrous regiment of women ? lol that made me laugh.
    I feel sad for those who can’t come but want to. I wish there was an easy answer. I tend to be “that person”.

  • Your Name

    I AM SURE THAT EVENT WILL BE VERY ENLIGHTENING TO ALL PEOPLE WHO
    EXPECTS TO HEAR THINGS THAT CAN PENETRATE THEIR CONVICTIONS AND
    WILL MAKE A DECISION TO FOLLOW CHRIST AS THEIR ROLE MODEL AND TO
    RECEIVED WORDS OF WISDOM AND UNDERSTANDING FROM ALL THESE SPEAKERS,EXHORTERS MAYBE,PREACHERS OR EVANGELISTS IN OUT MODERN TIMES.
    I WILL JUST WAIT FOR ANY PRINTED PAPER TO READ ABOUT THE EVENT BECAUSE
    I CANNOT JOIN THE PEOPLE WHO WILL ATTEND.I AM A BUSY MOM OF MANY GIRLS
    TO TAKE CARE AT HOME.

  • cas

    Looks like a really good event. I’m a little confused though. I’m assuming it takes place October 2009, but next fall is 2010 and I couldn’t discern which from the website. So which is it?

  • cas

    Figured out from a calendar that the event is this fall, not next.

  • http://tryingtofollow.com Ariah Fine

    Becky, I’m in the same boat. I think they did well in attempting to make it affordable by ‘conference’ standards, but like you, that’s not necessarily within the price range of everyone.
    It does seem like they are trying though. Don’t know if you saw, but they are doing a deal for bloggers turned sales people by offering free registration for bloggers who recruit attendees. Here’s a link:
    http://www.jopaproductions.com/christianity-21-faith-21st-century/blogger
    It’s worth a shot. That’s how I’m gonna try and make it.


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