So, I’m here at Acton University in beautiful downtown Grand Rapids (I’m actually not kidding; the river is really pretty and I enjoyed walking along it last night) in a room full of several thousand traditional Catholics and evangelicals all concerned with economics and politics. How exactly does a nice Episcopal priest and English major end up in a place like this?
Well, my husband Edwin came last year as a blogger (you can read his reflections about the experience here.) He’s back (he’ll be blogging at The Pickled Pencil), I’m with him (first time away from home overnight without the kids in 5 years!), and I’m also here as part of my work with the Theology of Work Project.
I quickly discovered that Edwin was right about one thing: the group of people gathered here is incredibly diverse (though I’m definitely adding to the diversity as a woman in a clerical collar) and incredibly gracious, even to those of us who are somewhat skeptical. (They do hope they’ll convert us, but they want to do it honestly, by exercising reasoned argument.)
The opening plenary was by Magette Wade, source of the quote in my title. I’ll be back this evening with more reflections on her talk as well as the others I’ve heard so far. (Right now I’m sitting in the back of a fascinating session on Disney and Pixar as a cultural touchstone.) Meanwhile, here’s a few pictures….