The purpose of this journal is to promote a high standard of theological discourse among all the people of God in the Metro Chicago Synod.
If we are to raise the level of discourse we need fluency. If we are to have fluency we must have confidence in thinking our theology locally. All of this demands that you, the church leader, take pen in hand, and write to us your considered thoughts.
Fluency means you don’t wait to write until you’ve got it right. We want Let’s Talk to be a crucible for critical thinking–a laboratory where we all trust the power of the process of sharing our passionate concerns, even when we don’t have perfect syntax or an irresistible mass of footnotes to back us up. If you have an itch–if you find your palms sweating over a concern where good or bad theology is making a big difference in people’s lives–write down your reflections, give them some muscle by bouncing them against Scripture and the Confessions, and send them in.
And let’s all write and read comments in Let’s Talk with a full confidence that local theology can be honest, robust, and valuable theology. If the Word became flesh in Bethlehem, can it not also come alive in the musings of Pastor Betty in Barrington? Is it not a grand exercise of our belief in the Incarnation to put aside our snooty insistence on reading only what comes from Germany or Harvard, and to quit discounting the power of our local experience and personal perspective to instruct and guide us.
We need you to grab the universal truths that nag at you in the beautiful particularity of your ministry context and send them in that we might make them part of our faithful conversation.
Though we at Let’s Talk organize issues around themes, we will certainly print worthwhile articles on concerns that do not fit an issue topic. Write on anything, any time. Keep in mind that we are looking for articles between 1,000 and 4,000 words in length that deal with theological concerns that have impact in our Synod. Please write theological reflection, not a list of recipes for ministry.
If you do wish to contribute to upcoming themes, note that during Advent we will publish an issue on the impact of women’s issues and feminist theology in the Church. Deadline for that issue will be September 1. We are tentatively planning for Epiphany, 1997, an issue about “discerning the spirits” or evaluating current spirituality and religious movements. (Our ecclesiology issue will be published in mid-summer, 1996, but the deadline for articles for that issue has already passed.)
Expect your submissions to be handled with the same respect that we give to the most learned professional theologians. But they will be edited. Some will be returned for more of your editing. And we will not pay for them. Consider them contributions to our life together!
Letters to the editor and short responses to articles are welcome at any time. Send all of your submissions and correspondence to the editor using the information provided in the publication box on page 2.
Thanks for being part of this experiment in theological conversation!