By The Revd Anthony D. Pettit, Diocese of Bermuda
The Anglican Church of Bermuda is welcoming world-renowned theologian the Revd Dr Alister McGrath to speak at a public forum on the subject “Faith in a Scientific Age”.
The forum, which takes place on Saturday 2nd November in St Paul’s Christian Education Centre in Paget, will look at recent discussions about whether faith makes sense in an age of science including those with the atheist scientist Richard Dawkins. Questions to be addressed in Professor McGrath’s talk include “What is faith?”, “Can we prove God exists?”, “Are science and religion locked in mortal combat?”, “What does science say to faith? And faith to science?”
Originally a scientist, Professor McGrath is currently Professor of Theology, Ministry, and Education at Kings College London and Head of the Centre for Theology, Religion and Culture. He is a leading authority in the relation of science and religion.
Bishop Nick Dill said, “I am personally very excited to be able to welcome Alister McGrath back to Bermuda. Dr McGrath was the Principal of my Theological College and brought a tremendous academic vigour to the college, but he has an amazing ability to communicate at a level that everyone can understand. He is a humble man, but you know that what he says is backed up by research, deep thought and prayer.” Alister McGrath has spoken in Bermuda on one occasion previously.
The forum, which will include time for questions and answers, is free and open to all. However, owing to limited space, tickets are required and may be obtained from all the Anglican Churches on the island, as well as the Diocesan Office in the Cathedral of the Most Holy Trinity. Enquirers may contact the Diocesan Office by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Professor McGrath will also give the first in the “The Canon Thomas and Winfred Nisbett Lectures in Biblical Studies” series on the morning of Saturday 2 November entitled “Engaging with the World”.
After Professor McGrath’s sermon at the Cathedral’s morning service on Sunday 3 November, he will present an accessible and engaging lecture, “C. S. Lewis and the Life of Faith”. Professor McGrath is one of the world’s experts on Lewis (who spent much of his life as an atheist) and this lecture will look at the life of C. S. Lewis, and especially at his famous novels "The Chronicles of Narnia".
- Alister McGrath is Professor of Theology, Ministry, and Education at King's College, London. He was born in Belfast, and educated at Oxford and Cambridge. He is married, with two adult children. He is a priest in the Church of England, and ministers in a group of rural parishes in the Cotswold area of England at weekends. He has written many books, including a best-selling and highly acclaimed biography of C. S. Lewis. He has a particular concern in encouraging parishes and ordinary church members to be more confident about their faith.
- “The Canon Thomas and Winfred Nisbett Lectures in Biblical Studies” ('The Nisbett Lectures') have been conceived by the Diocesan Committee on Education and Evangelism of the Anglican Church of Bermuda to sponsor and promote an annual lecture in the Diocese open to both Anglicans and non-Anglicans, lay and ordained. The aims of the Nisbett Lectures are to foster theological understanding and debate in the Diocese; to provide a forum for learning in Christian Biblical theology; to promote growth in faith and enable the members of the Anglican Church of Bermuda to engage with and address the issues of the day from a mature Biblical perspective; and to encourage and develop the outreach of the Church in evangelism and mission.
- The Nisbett Lectures were inaugurated by the Bishop of London, The Rt. Revd. & Rt. Hon. Richard Chartres on 17th November 2012.
- The Nisbett lectures have been so called to honour the legacy of Canon Thomas and Winifred Nisbett, long-standing and much loved pioneers in shaping the Anglican Church of Bermuda in the modern era, who through patience and the study of the scriptures modelled and enabled the Church to move beyond the era of segregation and division.