Members of the Oklahoma Christian University community participated in the 2014 Christian Scholars Conference last week at Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tenn.
Known as the Thomas H. Olbricht Christian Scholars' Conference, professors, graduate students and professionals present more than 100 peer-reviewed and generative sessions to advance scholarship, collaboration and engaged dialogue.
This year’s conference theme was "Leadership in the Academy, Religion and Civil Life."
Key speakers included Christian missions and history professor and author Lamin Sanneh, theologian, professor and author Carl Holladay, former college administrator and recognized religious author and publisher Phyllis Tickle and religion professor and author Elizabeth Clark. In addition, Nashville’s Blackbird Theatre presented the world premiere of the stage adaptation of John Updike’s novel “Roger’s Version.”
OC professors participated in seven presentations at the conference.
OC Professor of History Matt McCook presented a paper titled “Reconsidering Again Alexander Campbell’s Political and Social Ethic.” His session was titled Liberty, Reform, and Schism in Antebellum America. In addition, McCook used the week to conduct research related to future scholarship.
Associate Professor of Communication Josh Watson presented on “Teaching Leadership Through Appreciative Inquiry and Dialogic Theory of Public Relations” and “Leadership and Follow-Ship: A Case Study of a Leader’s Framing of Risk-Taking.” His sessions were titled Leadership Development and Theory and Leadership Challenges, respectively.
OC Professor of New Testament John Harrison served as convener of the peer-reviewed session titled New Testament Exegesis I. Richard Wright, chair of the Graduate School of Bible and associate professor of Bible, also served as convener for the session titled Major Book Review: “Marcan Priority Without Q,” which was edited by John C. Poirier and Jeffrey Peterson.
In addition, OC alumnus and adjunct professor Jeremy Beller presented on “Terror Management, Dissociation and Religious Orientation: Addressing Allport’s Paradox of Religion and Racism.” His session was titled Civil Rights and Churches of Christ: Leadership in the Academy.
Finally, OC President John deSteiguer participated with other college presidents in the session titled The Future of Christian Higher Education: The Most Critical Issues We Face in the Decade Ahead. President deSteiguer also served as a reviewer for the session titled Major Book Review: “Christianity on Trial: A Lawyer Examines the Christian Faith,” which was written by Mark Lanier.
The Christian Scholars Conference was created in 1981 under the direction of Dr. Thomas H. Olbricht, Distinguished Professor Emeritus at Pepperdine University, and has since been hosted by several universities associated with churches of Christ. The conference calls together scholars from a wide variety of disciplines in the liberal arts, sciences, business, law, education and medicine to develop their own academic research and to reflect on the integration of scholarship and faith.