• 2014 Mahle Lecture

    Monica Coleman
    Mahle Scholar in Residence
    Dr. Monica A. Coleman

    Lecture Title
    Becoming Buddhist When Jesus Isn’t Enough:
    A Third Wave Womanist Negotiation of Race, Gender and Religion

    Tuesday, April 8, 2014, 7pm
    Sundin Music Hall, Hamline University
    1531 Hewitt Ave., Saint Paul 55104-1284

    Download the Poster 
    The quote on Dr. Monica A. Coleman’s website, monicaacoleman.com, reads “Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly.” A philosophical theologian working with a process metaphysic, Coleman identifies creative transformation as the way we work with God to implement God’s ideals in the world. This lecture examines the transformative ways of negotiating race, gender and religion when African American religious identification departs from the “standard black narrative” (William D. Hart) of Protestant Christianity. Dr. Coleman will offer a third wave womanist reading of Jan Willis’ narrative Dreaming Me where she describes her journey through the civil rights movement to Tibetan Buddhism. Variously denoted as both a conversion from Christianity and as belonging to both  Buddhism and Baptist Christianity, Willis must navigate among her racial/cultural commitments, gendered location and spiritual yearnings. Such activity (1) reveals how African American cultural consciousness facilitates complex religious identification, (2) embraces the ambiguous, hybrid and multiple dimensions that are characteristic of third wave womanism, and (3) stretches progressive Christianity’s commitment to religious pluralism. A womanist reading of Willis’ narrative demonstrates that such negotiation may be increasingly commonplace in the contemporary landscape of non-traditional religious identification and the decline of mainline Protestantism.

    Additional Workshops

    Sunday, April 6
    Camphor Memorial United Methodist Church,
    585 Fuller Ave., St. Paul, 55103
    10am - Worship Service, Guest Preacher

    Kwanzaa Community Church’s Northside Women’s
    Space, 2100 N. Emerson Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55411
    4pm - 6:30pm - Conversations on Health, Healing & Womanist Theologies
    A collaboration with United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities, includes light supper (free).

    RSVP to the Wesley Center, 651-523-2878 or nvictorinvangerud01@hamline.edu

    Wednesday, April 9
    Bush Center Ballroom (second floor), Hamline University, 1536 Hewitt Ave., St. Paul, MN 55104
    9:30am - 11:30am - Waves of Womanist Conversations and Brunch (free)
    Free parking available in the Drew Lot, one block east of the Bush Center along Hewitt Ave.

    RSVP to the Wesley Center, 651-523-2878 or nvictorinvangerud01@hamline.edu