2019 Thinking Differently About God
Below you will find videos, texts and more from the speakers at the 2019 conference.
Fiona MacMillan: Introduction to the conference (video)
Fiona is chair of the Disability Advisory Group at St Martin-in-the-Fields and a trustee of Inclusive Church. After ten years managing innovative health projects Fiona studied at the School for Social Entrepreneurs, becoming one its first fellows. She has been collecting health and neurodivergent labels for the last 20 years, and combines these experiences in her writing and work on disability, lived experience and questions of social justice. Fiona coedited the booklets Calling from the Edge and Something Worth Sharing. She is a member of the Nazareth Community.
Dan Barnes-Davies: Storyteller (video)
Dan was born and raised in rural north Essex, but is also a Londoner by adoption. He started to help with these conferences as an Inclusive Church trustee years ago. He has pursued and received diagnoses of dyspraxia and ADHD in those years, deepening his self-understanding. Among these insights is a new perspective on his otherwise very privileged experiences, and to encounter (some) institutional discrimination.
Ann is autistic and faceblind, lives with arthritis and has nerve damage from chemotherapy for past cancer. Having been unable to use spoken language to communicate for the first ten years of life, Ann sometimes uses technology to assist. Her experiences of encountering anxiety around autistic people in church contexts have led her to pioneer work in this field. The autism guidelines for the Church of England were written by Ann & her team. In her wider work Ann is a Director of an international autism advisory group and a Trustee of Autistic Pride Reading.
Sam is Vicar of St Martin-in-the-Fields, and a widely known preacher, pastor, writer, broadcaster, and theologian. He has served as a Church of England parish priest for 21 years. He also spent 7 years in North Carolina, where he was Dean of Duke University Chapel. Sam is also Visiting Professor of Christian Ethics at King’s College London, and a member of the Multi-Stakeholder Council that advises the G20 meetings. He has published 33 books, including studies in Christian ethics and explorations of liturgy, preaching, faith and mission. His most recent book is Walk Humbly (Canterbury 2019).
Rachel is affectionately known by the local press as the Pink Vicar. She had a particularly formational journey through curacy during which she was diagnosed with Bipolar, ADHD and Sensory Processing Disorder, with strong autistic traits; she is currently awaiting ASC assessment. Rachel lives and works openly with these conditions, and has been licensed as Priest in Charge of St Mark’s Church, Pennington. Her gifts and symptoms include high energy, enthusiasm, creativity and love of colour – especially pink! Rachel loves exploring her faith and spirituality through creativity, stitch, paint and contemplation, and is a member of the Community of Hopeweavers.
Bingo (they/them) is a genderqueer, autistic, dyspraxic person working as a curate to The Order of the Black Sheep, a fresh expression of church in Chesterfield in Derby Diocese. They have been involved in disability activism for the last fourteen years and have contributed to various secular and religious discourse around neurodiversity and liberation, including as a storyteller in the Inclusive Church resource book, Disability. Bingo is also a performance poet who uses their poetry to reflect on their own experiences as an autistic and transgender person in the church.
Sue is a retired GP and a self-supporting priest in the Chelmsford Diocese. She is an Ignatian trained spiritual director with experience of leading individuals through the Spiritual Exercises. Other ministries include hospital chaplaincy and providing chaplaincy support to an independent secondary school for students with autism. Early in 2017, she received a diagnosis of autism. Since then she has been passionate about raising awareness in churches, and reflecting on the interface between autism and spirituality.
Krysia is an autistic PhD student at the University of Kent exploring autism within different beliefs, including religious and humanist systems. She also is a rotational panelist on BBC Radio Kent’s Sunday Breakfast and writes a blog ‘Musings of an autistic researching spirituality’. She has been campaigning for a more ‘inclusive church’ in her local Methodist circuit for the last 3 years. @krysiawally
Philip writes: ‘As someone who has been identified as dyslexic I have had trouble with expressing myself with words. As a “Visual Theologian”, my aim is to minster to the effectiveness of the Christian Contemplative practice of photography and thus come to understand a deeper realisation of the divine nature of God. As someone who is identified with cerebral palsy, my work as a photographer helps me question my own identity and its implication to the wider world. Working closely with photography, contemplation and my identity, my research questions the less fortunate understanding of my identity and questions my own true self; that is to help me answer the question; “Who am I?”.
2018 Something Worth Sharing
(all the below links are to videos)
Fiona MacMillan- introduction to conference
Sam Wells (intro prayer) & Nikki Goodhew – storyteller
Sam Wells on practical theology
June Boyce-Tillman on language
Ann Memmott on access
Panel – introductory speeches
2017 Just as I am
Ali Lyon video
Panel Discussion video
Sam Wells video
Saturday Conference closing liturgy (pdf)
Tim Goode Sunday morning sermon (pdf)
Sunday morning healing service for St Luke’s day
2016 Prophets and Seers
Donald Eadie – notes from talk (pdf)
Ann Memmott: notes from talk (pdf)
Emily Richardson: being a digital prophet (pdf)
2015 Living on the Edge
Sam Wells: opening address (pdf)
Ann Memmott talk (Powerpoint slides)
Naomi Jacobs talk (Powerpoint slides)
Susan Wolfe presentation (pdf)
2014 Transforming our Vision
Inclusive Church in partnership with St Martin-in-the-Fields held its 3rd Day Conference in October 2014. Speakers included Professor John Hull. Emeritus Professor or Religious Education University of Birmingham.
2013 Places of Belonging Conference Report
Places of Belonging was a day-long conference on disability, mental health, inclusion and God hosted by Inclusive Church and St Martin in the Fields at the church in Trafalgar Square. It brought together 75 people from Greater London and beyond – to pray, to reflect, and to envision new ways of being a community in which everyone’s abilities are valued and shared.
2012 Opening the Roof Conference Report
In October 2012 in partnership with St Martin in the Fields, Inclusive Church held a national conference: Opening the Roof: Opening the conversation about disability.