Diana Butler Bass

Diana Butler Bass “is a historian focusing on the history of Christianity and a leading voice in progressive Christianity. Bass is currently an independent scholar who writes broadly on American religion and culture.” (Wikipedia) She is an Episcopal layperson and is on the staff of Virginia Theological Seminary.

Diana Butler Bass wikipedia

Diana Butler Bass home page

Diana Butler Bass books


Harvard Conference on the Progressive Church Dec 6-7, 2007 4 parts
“Finding Our Way Forward” (for a coverage of this event, please see my Blog 2)
Marcus Borg, Brian McLaren, Diana Butler Bass

Part 1 Opening Panel  all three 1:29:53

Part 2  McLaren and Butler Bass  2:00:43

Part 3 Marcus Borg   56:08

Part 4 Panel all three   1:40:04

Luther Seminary Feb 1-3 2012  22:13
“The Great Religious Recession”

“Christianity After Religion”
All Saints Church, Pasadena Feb 12, 2012  44:55

Day1  Feb 16, 2012   36:20

On Point  March 12, 2012   47:46
“Spiritual but Not Religious”

State of Belief  May 20, 2012  21:07

Claremont School of Theology  July 2012   1:32:27
“A Great Awakening? Signs of a New Christianity”
Forum: Diana B B, Brian McLaren, Mark Whitlock

C S T March 5, 2013   49:47  “Christianity as
Spiritual Experience: a Feminine Faith for the Future”

C S T March 5, 2013 1:02:23
Panel Evolution of Women in Ministry

Yale Divinity School   April 25, 2013   1:51:21
“Future of Faith” debate Diana Butler Bass & Ross Douthat

Home-brewed Christianity  July 23, 2012  56:37

Univ of Virginia  Feb  28, 2014   1:32:06
Generation Next and the Future of Faith

Coral Gables UCC  March 9, 2014   1:11:57
Preaching at Worship Service

No. Illinois United Methodist Church Conference
Address 1  June 9, 2014  1:00:50

Address 2 June 9, 2014  1:14:15

II A Books:

Standing Against the Whirlwind: Evangelical Episcopalians in Nineteenth Century America (Oxford University Press, 1995) published as “Diana Hochstedt Butler”

Strength for the Journey: A Pilgrimage of Faith in Community (Jossey-Bass, 2002)

Broken We Kneel: Reflections on Faith and Citizenship (Jossey-Bass, 2004)

The Practicing Congregation: Imagining a New Old Church (Alban, 2004) (with Brian McLaren)

From Nomads to Pilgrims: Stories from Practicing Congregations (Alban, 2006), with Joseph Stewart-Sicking

Christianity for the Rest of Us: How the Neighborhood Church is Transforming the Faith (Harper One, 2006)

A People’s History of Christianity: The Other Side of the Story (Harper One, 2009)

Christianity After Religion: The End of Church and the Birth of a New Spiritual Awakening (Harper One, 2012)

II B Books (Description)

Christianity for the Rest of Us
For decades the accepted wisdom has been that America’s mainline Protestant churches are in decline, eclipsed by evangelical mega-churches. Church and religion expert Diana Butler Bass wondered if this was true, and this book is the result of her extensive, three-year study of centrist and progressive churches across the country. Her surprising findings reveal just the opposite—that many of the churches are flourishing, and they are doing so without resorting to mimicking the mega-church, evangelical style.

Christianity for the Rest of Us describes this phenomenon and offers a how-to approach for Protestants eager to remain faithful to their tradition while becoming a vital spiritual community. As Butler Bass delved into the rich spiritual life of various Episcopal, United Methodist, Disciples of Christ, Presbyterian, United Church of Christ, and Lutheran churches, certain consistent practices—such as hospitality, contemplation, diversity, justice, discernment, and worship—emerged as core expressions of congregations seeking to rediscover authentic Christian faith and witness today.

This hopeful book, which includes a study guide for groups and individuals, reveals the practical steps that leaders and laypeople alike are taking to proclaim an alternative message about an emerging Christianity that strives for greater spiritual depth and proactively engages the needs of the world.

Christianity After Religion
Most Americans are aware that recent decades have been a time of change in religious belief, behaving, and belonging. Most who read this blog have some knowledge of varying aspects of these shifts. Few people understand how the many trends are linked and fewer still grasp how this looks within the context of church history. Diana Butler Bass draws on her rich experiences as a researcher, consultant, subject matter expert, and perpetual student of the topic to craft a book that is sure to become the starting point for conversation in the academy, the church, and even in the many communities that together comprise our culture.

Christianity After Religion is a three part story that is designed to be read sequentially:

*Part 1, “The End of Religion,” considers the changes within the framework of decline of traditional measures, primarily focusing on the last decade. Rather than simply recounting polls and popular opinion, Diana Butler Bass explores the deeper issues they suggest. (Readers will identify with their own life experiences while simultaneously better understanding the religious world in which they live.)

*Part 2, “A New Vision,” captures the many and varied efforts to reshape Christianity for the future. These efforts have been underway for decades yet clarity, much less unity, remains elusive. Butler Bass proposes that new visions must end the centuries old approach of believing, behaving, and belonging in favor of the more ancient order: belonging, behaving, and believing.

*Part 3, “Awakening,” moves from possibility to practice by arguing that the current experiences are a Fourth Great Awakening. By way of comparison with the first three Great Awakenings, the fourth seems enough like the previous to warrant the label yet dissimilar enough to warrant being considered the Fourth Great Awakenings (plural) or the Great Global Awakening to note its spiritual emphasis and impact on multiple religions.


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