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Following Jesus through a 21st Century Wilderness

March 30-31, 2019

Church of the Ascension is hosting The Very Rev. Michael Battle for a Lenten workshop weekend on March 30-31 called “Following Jesus in a 21st Century Wilderness.” Battle’s book Ubuntu: I in You and You in Me will be a focus of the weekend. Two main events will be open to the public, the Saturday workshop and the Sunday School presentation. Below are details about the Saturday workshop that promises to be highly engaging and enlightening.

Workshop Details

Saturday, March 30  9:00 am

The Very Rev. Michael Battle, Ph.D., will visit Church of the Ascension from Saturday, March 30th, through Sunday, March 31st, for a Lenten workshop weekend, Following Jesus Through a 21st Century Wilderness. A workshop will be held on Saturday, March 30th, beginning at 9:00 am and finishing around 3:30 pm. The focus of the workshop will be the book Ubuntu: I in You and You in Me. “Ubuntu” is an African concept of personhood which emphasizes the communal and spiritual dimension of human identity, which of necessity poses a challenge to persons thinking of themselves as individuals. Dr. Battle will use this concept to talk about ways of cultivating this concept in our daily Christian lives.

Lunch and Refreshments

Lunch will feature a boxed lunch from Honey Baked Ham. When purchasing your ticket, you can choose either the ham, turkey, or vegetarian option. Light breakfast and afternoon refreshments will be available throughout the day in addition to lunch. The ticket price, which includes the workshop, lunch, and refreshments, is $10. You can purchase tickets online, in the parish office, and at the door.

Purchase Tickets Here

Who is...

Michael Battle

Currently appointed as Herbert Thompson Professor of Church and Society and Director of the Desmond Tutu Center at General Theological Seminary in New York, the Very Rev. Michael Battle, Ph.D. has an undergraduate degree from Duke University, received his master’s of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary, a master’s of Sacred Theology from Yale University and a PhD in theology and ethics, also from Duke University. He was ordained a priest by Archbishop Desmond Tutu in 1993. Battle’s clergy experience, in addition to his current church work, includes serving as vicar at St. Titus Episcopal Church in Durham, NC, rector at Church of Our Saviour, in San Gabriel, California; rector at St. Ambrose Episcopal Church, Raleigh, N.C.; and interim rector or associate priest with other churches in North Carolina and in Cape Town, South Africa.

On two occasions he moved into churches located in ethnically changing neighborhoods (to Asian in one and to Hispanic in the other) and helped both to adapt and grow. He also served as provost and canon theologian for the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles. In 2010, Battle was given one of the highest Anglican Church distinctions as “Six Preacher,” by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams. A distinction given to only a few who demonstrate great dedication to the church that goes back to 16th century England and Thomas Cranmer. Battle’s academic experience includes service as interim dean of Students and Community Life at Episcopal Divinity School, dean for academic affairs, vice president and associate professor of theology at Virginia Theology Seminary; as associate professor of spirituality and black church studies, at Duke University’s Divinity School; and as assistant professor of spiritual and moral theology in the School of Theology at the University of the South. Battle has published nine books, including “Reconciliation: the Ubuntu Theology of Desmond Tutu,” and the book for the Episcopal Church’s General Convention, “Ubuntu: I in You and You in Me.”

In his PeaceBattle Institute he works on subjects of diversity, spirituality, prayer, race and reconciliation. Almost since its inception, he has served as pastor and spiritual director to hundreds of clergy and laity for CREDO for the Episcopal Church. He has also served as chaplain to Archbishop Tutu, Congressman John Lewis, the House of Bishops and, in 2008, was chaplain to the Lambeth Conference of Anglican Bishops. He is a featured keynote speaker and has led numerous clergy and lay retreats, including the bishops’ retreat of the Province of the West Indies. In addition, Battle has served as vice president to the grandson of Mahatma Gandhi, Arun Gandhi’s Institute for Nonviolence.