On November 6 and 7, Dr. Elizabeth Drescher delivered her three-part series on "Media, Meaning and Ministry in the Digital Reformation" in Seabury Hall at The General Theological Seminary. Her themes ranged from The Spiritual Lives of America’s 'Nones' to The Roots of the Digital Reformation to Faith & Religion in an Expanding Universe.
General Seminary's largest hall, Seabury Auditorium, was filled to capacity with those from all areas of ministry seeking to better understand the digital and social revolution that is happening all around as well as the group of "nones"–people who answer "none" when asked with what religion they identify. In her lectures, Drescher drew upon the research for her current book project, Choosing Our Religion: The Spiritual Lives of Religious Nones.
The event was live-tweeted by the Rev. Colin Chapman from GTS Digital Formation, General's initiative to help church leaders understand social media. Digital Formation is conducting a series of monthly free webinars entitled Equipping Digital Saints, with the next on the subject of "Social Media, Hospitality & the Holiday Season" happening on December 5. You can find out how to register and read more about Digital Formation's 2013-14 programs at gts.edu/digitalformation.
Dr. Drescher is a faculty member in religious studies and pastoral ministries at Santa Clara University and a scholar-in-residence in the Episcopal Diocese of El Camino Real. She is the author of Tweet If You (heart) Jesus: Practicing Church in the Digital Reformation and, with Keith Anderson, Click 2 Save: The Digital Ministry Bible.
The Paddock Lectures were founded in 1880 by General Seminary benefactor, George A. Jarvis, and named in honor of the Rt. Rev. Benjamin Henry Paddock, GTS Class of 1852. The series has featured many of the world’s leading theologians and Anglican scholars, and has become a prestigious and highly anticipated feature of the GTS annual Alumni Gathering.