Winter Dates: January 14th- March 25th
Winter entry slots – January 14th or March 1st.
Summer Term: May 13th – July 22nd
Summer entry slots – May 13th, June 3rd, July 1st.
We are accepting reservation requests for the Winter & Summer 2021 Term, but please be aware that we are only accepting students during entry slots posted above. Guest must stay for a minimum of 2 weeks, with priority given to those who stay the whole term.
In accordance with the State of Massachusetts, you must be tested for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, 3-5 days prior to coming to L’Abri. Documentation of a negative PCR test result is required upon arrival at L’Abri, even if you are traveling from a low-risk state.
Winter 2021 Lecture Schedule
Term dates: January 14 – March 25
While time is a tricky matter to fully wrap our heads around, its elusiveness doesn’t keep us from having a complicated relationship with it. Whether we have too much time on our hands or not enough, for those of us living in “clock time” we often find ourselves having an adversarial relationship with time. This has been true for so many of us during this year of pandemic. This lecture will give a history of “clock time” and then consider how we might engage with the time that has been given to us and what it might mean to become a friend of time.
Curiosity is a quality that is not often counted among the Christian virtues. And yet to be curious can be a wonderful asset to people- a source of learning and joy. In this lecture we will explore different categories of human curiosity and examine some cultural attitudes towards being curious. We will then reflect on some of the ways in which curiosity equips us to better serve God by functioning as a springboard for other virtues.
This lecture is the second in a series on the Apostle Paul and women. It will be a consideration of the nature of metaphor, Paul’s striking but often overlooked use of maternal metaphors to make sense of his own ministry as well as a consideration of what this might mean for the fraught topic of gender ‘roles’ today.
The ability to laugh at yourself can be a disarming gift in the midst of difficult conversations and tense relationships, but is laughing at yourself anything more than a communication technique? Is there something fundamentally ridiculous about each of us to which laughter is an appropriate response? What does the Bible teach us about the incongruities of being fallen and limited humans, and why do we experience some of these incongruities as funny? This lecture will examine the potentially redemptive nature of self-directed humor.
This lecture addresses two interrelated christian practices, hospitality and friendship. It takes note of how these have brought profound healing to societal divisions in the past, and makes a case for why we would want to recover them in the present.
When God calls something beautiful that seems worthy of our attention! All four gospel writers include a mysterious story of a woman approaching Jesus at a dinner and pouring oil or perfume on him. What is this about? Why does he call it beautiful? And how might this story help us understand beauty today?
This lecture will be a consideration of some of the Apostle Paul’s seemingly problematic passages around slavery, focusing in particular on 1 Corinthians 7 and his letter to Philemon (give ‘em a read before tuning in!). While it is understandably disappointing for many modern readers of Paul that he does not directly condemn the institution of slavery, yet before dismissing the Apostle for what he doesn’t do, it is worthwhile to considering again what it is he does do.
For our lives to go on we all assume a respect for human rights in ourselves and in our neighbors. What are human rights, how did we get them and why are they important?
Autumn 2020 - Friday Night Lecture Schedule
Updated term dates: Sept 15-Nov 5
Walking is as ordinary as it gets. It’s so commonplace, it’s almost pedestrian. But the Scriptures, especially Proverbs, elevate this simple activity to a rich analogy for life with God. If we’re invited to “walk with God” how do we do that? And might regular, literal walks be a way to stay on the Way?
While many discussions of women in the writings of the Apostle Paul begin and end in the infamous controversial passages, this lecture will start elsewhere and instead look at the often overlooked named women in Paul’s letters. My hope is that by looking at who these particular named women are, what they appear to be up to and the way Paul describes them will provide us a fresh way into the often fraught discussion of Paul and women.
Most contemporary people are surrounded by cheaply made, easily replaceable products. In addition to this, many of our lives are so mediated through digital technology that we seldom use our hands to engage the physical world at all. Is the loss of ‘manual competence’ really a loss, or is it simply the way of the modern world?
In a way that seems prophetic of today, C.S. Lewis commented that one symptom of a sick society is that it talks about politics too much. Wanting to move beyond the incessant, performative, tone-deaf, package deal platform of partisan politics in America, this lecture will consider the quasi-religious nature that politics has taken on today and place that in conversation with the “politics” of Christians in the first few centuries.
In a world where the dominant source of moral authority for the individual is increasingly one’s own emotions, outrage has become the quickest path to moral conviction and to political influence. How should we understand this and respond to it?
Winter 2020 Lecture Schedule
By Anna Friedrich
This lecture is part of our ongoing series on the goodness of creation and our unique role as humans to explore, care for, protect, and delight in it. We will look at two things revealed in what we see around us and what we read in the Bible — Variety and Abundance. What can these two teach us about who God is and who we are?
By Sarah Chestnut
What does good food mean? What makes food good? Can learning to cook- or even just hanging around the kitchen- make us more human? Is eating a spiritual act? In an age of individualized diets that can become their own religions, is there hope for “family style” eating and true hospitality? Does what and how we eat really matter? With these questions and many more in mind, we will explore the significance of cooking and eating for the recovery of our true humanity.
By Dick Keyes
Political Polarization threatens to cripple our government. There seem to be few solutions on offer, but could Christian people willing to stand under the whole counsel of God make a difference?
By Ben Keyes
The biblical writers often tell us that God acts in the world ‘for the sake of his name.’ Biblical characters sometimes plead with God to intervene ‘for His name’s sake.” What does it mean that God defends his reputation to people? What difference would it make to pray with the glory of God’s name in mind?
By Joshua Chestnut
What was once the most popular and most commented on book in all of the scriptures, the Song of Songs (or sometimes called the Song of Solomon) plays little role in shaping contemporary imaginations about what it means to be human. Often assumed to be simplistic love songs, these ancient Hebrew love poems hold beautiful and timely wisdom on the goodness of human love, the problematic dynamics of abused power, the significance of place as well as the delight of life with God.
By Ben Keyes
In ancient Israel vines, vineyards, grapes and wine making were a part of every day life and good wine was considered a sign of God’s blessing. The cultivation of grape vines also provides a rich source of metaphorical imagery throughout the bible. This lecture will attempt to follow the thread of vine imagery throughout scripture to see what is communicated about God and his saving relationship to his people.
By Dave Friedrich
How are we to understand the violence we encounter in the Bible within the broader culture and context of Scripture? That will be our guiding question as we look at Joshua’s Conquest in Canaan and address further questions surrounding genocide, the inspiration of Scripture and the goodness of God.
By Dave Friedrich
What are we to make of the similarities and significant differences between Joshua and Jesus, especially as it relates to the role of violence in the Promised Land? That will be the guiding question of this lecture as we look at how Jesus ‘conquers’ in the gospels and the book of Revelation.
By Joshua Chestnut
This lecture will be an exploration of the theology of Holy Saturday. Taking what the Apostle’s Creed refers to as Jesus’ “descent to the dead” as our starting place, this lecture will consider what it means that Jesus was dead as well as what this might mean for us as we consider the inevitability of our own death.
March 20 Desiring, Trusting, Knowing and Being Known – A psychiatrist considers: are our basic instincts illusions, or intimations? Cancelled
Dr. Brandon Unruh