Seventh Annual Lecture

SEI is delighted to announce that this year’s SEI Lecture will be given by the Revd Professor Sarah Coakley FBA on the topic: ‘Worship and Desire in the Anglican Tradition: Why this Matters in Contemporary Church and Culture’ .

Sarah Coakley is an Anglican priest, systematic theologian and philosopher of religion. She is Emeritus Norris-Hulse Professor of Divinity, University of Cambridge, and since 2018 has also been Honorary Professor at the Logos Institute, University of St Andrews. She is an Honorary Fellow of Oriel College, Oxford, a member of the European Academy of Arts and Sciences, and holds honorary degrees from the Universities of Lund, St Andrews, Toronto (St Michael’s College), and London (Heythrop College).

The Lecture will open up a discussion about how ‘desire’ operates, often all-unnoticed, in the workings of Anglican prayer and worship, and how we should think of its enduring significance in the particular context of contemporary church and culture. It is argued that theological reflection on the ordering of desires is a spiritual and ascetic task of particular significance for contemporary Christians (in this era of intense conflicting political and economic desires, generally, and distressing divisions about sexual desire in the Church), and one that should not be dislocated from public worship and prayerful preparation for it. The question is pressed: how should our prayer and worship change the way(s) we desire and see the world? How can this help us see a spiritual way forward in this time of crisis – economically, politically, and ecclesiastically?

The Lecture will be delivered online on Thursday 20th October 2022 at 5pm (UK time) with Professor Coakley speaking from the States. To register on Eventbrite, please click here.

(Photo used with Professor Coakley’s permission)