39 episodes

Welcome to Liminal Theology! My name is Jonathan Best and each month I’ll bring you engaging interviews and perspectives from some fantastic theologians and thinkers who explore boundaries, transitions, and being in-between across society, culture, and religion. This is the companion podcast to liminaltheology.org

Liminal Theology Jonathan L. Best

    • Religion & Spirituality

Welcome to Liminal Theology! My name is Jonathan Best and each month I’ll bring you engaging interviews and perspectives from some fantastic theologians and thinkers who explore boundaries, transitions, and being in-between across society, culture, and religion. This is the companion podcast to liminaltheology.org

    Rosy Fairhurst (Episode 26)

    Rosy Fairhurst (Episode 26)

    I was thrilled to welcome the Rev. Rosy Fairhurst to the Liminal Theology Podcast. Rosy is an Anglican Priest working as Vicar at St Augustine & St Clement Bradford in Bradford, England. She is also an organizational analyst offering organizational analytic skills combined with a spiritual and theological dimension. Rosy has worked as a trainer, researcher, theological educator, pastor,and writer. She is the author of Uncovering Sin: A Gateway to Healing and Calling published by SPCK in 2012. Most recently she co-authored Crossing Thresholds: A Practical Theology of Liminality.

    Rosy and I had an amazing conversation covering a variety of topics related to liminality. We began by looking at the liminality of Rosy’s journey to the priesthood, ordination, and the overall social experience of Bradford, England. Next, we explored her interest in developmental psychology and the work of Donald Winnicott. Together we talked about transitional spaces and objects, religious iconography, and the important distinction between independence and interdependence. Rosy was a wonderful guest and I very much enjoyed her deep insight and wisdom. I know that you will also enjoy Rosy’s perspective on liminality.

    Learn more:
    https://www.lutterworth.com/product/crossing-thresholds-a-practical-theology-of-liminality/?attribute_format=ePub

    https://www.heartandanchorbd3.org/

    Twitter (@rosyfair)

    • 1 hr 5 min
    Nigel Rooms (Episode 25)

    Nigel Rooms (Episode 25)

    It was a pleasure to welcome the Reverend Canon Dr. Nigel Rooms to the Liminal Theology Podcast! Nigel is a freelance consultant, trainer and researcher, spiritual director, and architect of learning. Nigel is currently Associate Priest at St. Peter’s, Braunstone Park in Leicester. Nigel holds a Master’s degree in Mission and Ministry from Nottingham University and a Professional Doctorate (ThD) in Missiology from Birmingham University. He is a published author of books and journal articles in mission and contextual theology. He is also a missiologist, practical theologian, and editor of the journal Practical Theology. Nigel is a Leader with the Partnership for Missional Church UK, Church Mission Society. Most recently, he co-authored Crossing Thresholds: A Practical Theology of Liminality, published by Lutterworth Press.

    Nigel and I had an engaging conversation that had us exploring liminality from a variety of perspectives. Nigel opened by describing his background, particularly his journey into the priesthood and the academic work that followed. From there we explored liminality using Nigel's perspective and experience, which he then connected with his work in Crossing Thresholds. Nigel helpfully provided background on the book and why it's important as a work of practical theology. As practical theologians, Nigel and I had much to talk about regarding how we viewed theology and the relevance practical theology has for the study of liminality. Finally, Nigel described the Church's transition and how priests, pastors, and church leaders can offer helpful spaces for meaningful change as the Church slowly moves away from its mid-twentieth century perspective.

    It was a joy to talk with Nigel! I learned much from him and I'm sure you will too!

    Learn more:
    Crossing Thresholds: A Practical Theology of Liminality
    Twitter (@NigelRooms)

    • 1 hr 19 min
    Conversations: Rediscovering Imagination (Episode 24)

    Conversations: Rediscovering Imagination (Episode 24)

    Emmanuel Buteau returns for a new episode of the Liminal Theology Podcast! Emmanuel and Jonathan Best explore contemporary issues and concerns through practical theology and liminality.

    In this special Christmas episode, Emmanuel and Jonathan reflect on why things never seem to change. Their conversation begins with a look at the Haitian migrants’ situation at Del Rio, Texas last September. Reflecting on the harsh US response, which led to the deportation of thousands, Emmanuel and Jonathan look at the incident within the context of Christmas. The Haitian migrant story is the Christmas story, which desperately seeks a resolution. As a society, we lack the imagination to see this story in any other way.

    We lack imagination as a people, consequently, we continue propagating the same old reasons as to why we must continue to deny migrants and refugees. We can't see the story in any other way. Imagination fuels our ability to show love and compassion to the other. And without imagination, we're unable to create a better world. Christmas is a time of imagination, of considering and accepting how the impossible happened in our world – God becoming a human being. In the same way, Christmas is a time for imagining something different and accepting what we think is impossible. Christmas is a time for imagination, love, and hope. It's a time for extending our imagination to the migrants and refugees of our world.

    We hope you enjoy this conversation! It’s presented here in its entirety, with only minimal editing.

    • 1 hr 22 min
    David Wetton (Episode 23)

    David Wetton (Episode 23)

    On this episode it was my pleasure to welcome David Wetton to the podcast! David is the founder and CEO of Spirit in Work Limited, located in Birmingham, England. David mentors and supports business executives by empowering them to access their own inherent inner wisdom, guiding them through a contemplative and transformational journey. David helps others develop purpose led high performing leadership teams using 1 on 1 coaching and tailored leadership programs. David is also the host of the Conscious Leadership Now Podcast, a podcast that interviews some of the world’s leaders in the field of Conscious Leadership, both in practice and in thought. David holds degrees from Durham University Business School, Warwick Business School, and Bristol University. David is an ordained UK interfaith minister and spiritual counsellor.

    David and I had a wonderful conversation. Together we explored his story and experience, particularly his engagement with Celtic spirituality. Using his experiences, David offered some helpful ways to picture liminality, describing it as an “invitation” and “adventure.” David also shared the importance of people and guides along the journey, including the helpful “breadcrumbs” we find along the way. We engaged in an extensive conversation about the changing nature of the workplace and the importance of spirituality and “conscious leadership.” David was a wonderful guest, full of stories and helpful analogies. He also suggested many wonderful resources for understanding liminality, spirituality, and the workplace. I’ve listed the authors and books he mentioned below. I absolutely loved talking with David, and I’m sure it’s a conversation you will love too!

    Learn More:
    https://www.linkedin.com/in/dwetton/
    https://pod.co/conscious-leadership-now
    https://www.facebook.com/SpiritInWork

    Books and resources quoted from or mentioned during the conversation:

    A Desert in the Ocean: The Spiritual Journey According to St. Brendan the Navigator by David Adam

    Joseph Campbell’s “Hero’s Journey”

    Edgewalkers: People and Organizations That Take Risks, Build Bridges, and Break New Ground by Judi Neal

    The Great Growing Up: Being Responsible for Humanity's Future by John Renesch

    The Soul of a Leader: Finding Your Path to Success and Fulfillment by Margaret Benefiel

    King, Warrior, Magician, Lover: Rediscovering the Archetypes of the Mature Masculine by Robert Moore and Douglas Gillette

    Spiritual Leadership in Action: The CEL Story Achieving Extraordinary Results Through Ordinary People by Louis W. W. Fry

    • 1 hr 18 min
    Conversations: What Is Faith?(Episode 22)

    Conversations: What Is Faith?(Episode 22)

    Emmanuel Buteau returns for a new “Conversations” episode of the Liminal Theology Podcast! Emmanuel and Jonathan Best explore contemporary issues and concerns through practical theology and liminality.

    In this deeply personal and reflective episode, Emmanuel and Jonathan tackle the question of faith. Together they explore faith through experience rather than theology or doctrine. Wishing to move away from the “things'' of faith, they instead look at faith as a continual encounter with the “more.” They see faith as that which opens and provokes us to ask questions and explore doubts. Faith, being distinct from belief, grasps and carries us through both good and bad times. Faith is bigger than our religious practices and prayers, it also includes our struggles, disappointment, and doubts.

    This conversation was fundamentally important to both of them and helped to clarify many things they’ve been exploring. It’s also the longest episode to date! Neither of them really wanted the conversation to end, as they were enjoying it way too much to stop! It’s presented here in its entirety, with only minimal editing.

    • 1 hr 38 min
    Eileen Campbell-Reed (Episode 21)

    Eileen Campbell-Reed (Episode 21)

    In this episode I had the pleasure of talking with the Rev. Dr. Eileen Campbell-Reed. Eileen is Visiting Associate Professor of Pastoral Theology and Care at Union Theological Seminary, in New York City. She also teaches for the Women's Leadership Initiative MDiv program for Central Seminary in Nashville, Tennessee. Eileen is co-director of the Learning Pastoral Imagination Project, a study of ministry following 50 pastors and ministers since 2009. She is also founder and host of Three Minute Ministry Mentor, a weekly video, blog, and podcast providing resources that inform and inspire the practice of ministry.

    Her brand-new book, Pastoral Imagination: Bringing the Practice of Ministry to Life, published by Fortress Press, explores how ministry is cultivated across time, through embodiment and relationships, and in encounters with the holy. The book shares 50 big ministry topics, stories to unpack each topic, supportive resources, and questions for reflection. She is also the author of Anatomy of a Schism (2016), and the State of Clergywomen in the U.S. (2018).

    Eileen and I discuss her new book and how it came to be. Eileen describes how she got involved in the project and the qualitative research that went into exploring the practice of ministry as described by pastors, chaplains, and activists. Together we discuss the state of ministry today, how it's evolving, and the many unknown challenges that today's ministers face. Eileen's thoughtful insights and deep knowledge of ministry made this an insightful conversation, one that's sure to be thought provoking as we consider the changing face of ministry. This was a learning experience for me and I'm sure it will be for you too!

    Learn More:

    https://eileencampbellreed.org/
    https://eileencampbellreed.org/welcome-to-three-minute-ministry-mentor/
    https://www.fortresspress.com/store/product/9781506470061/Pastoral-Imagination

    • 1 hr 18 min