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Jeremy Begbie presents on “Why the Arts Matter to Faith” at Whitworth University

November 6, 2015
Whitworth University welcomes Jeremy Begbie, Langford Research Professor in Theology at Duke Divinity School and a fellow of the Royal School of Church Music, to present a lecture, “Out of this World – Why the Arts Matter to Faith.” Begbie’s lecture will be illustrated extensively with his performance at the piano, and will take place on Thursday, Nov. 19, at 7 p.m. in Weyerhaeuser Hall’s Robinson Teaching Theatre at Whitworth University. Admission is free. For more information, please call (509) 777-4215.

** Update: Due to the wind storm, the event location has moved to Seeley G. Mudd Chapel at 7 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 19. **

In his lecture, Begbie will question why the arts matter so much to people of religious faith. Many assume that the arts are chiefly concerned with pulling a person out of this world’s space and time and into a completely different, somehow superior world. The assumption is that the arts allow a person to escape this world, and it is that “escapism” that appeals to people of faith.

Begbie will challenge this view by arguing that the arts are crucial to faith, especially Judeo-Christian faith, because the arts immerse believers tangibly in this world. He believes that the arts connect people in a way that is bodily rooted, emotionally engaged, and socially uniting. And, as such, the arts can remind people that there is always more to this world than their mortal minds can ever grasp, and that this world can (and will) be re-made.

Begbie has published extensively on the topic of the interplay between music and theology. His books include Theology, Music and Time, and Resounding Truth: Christian Wisdom in the World of Music.

Whitworth extends special thanks to the Staley Lecture Fund, which provided generous support to bring Begbie to campus, and to Whitworth’s Weyerhaeuser Center and the Office of Church Engagement for sponsoring this event.

Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private liberal arts university affiliated with the Presbyterian church. The university, which has an enrollment of 3,000 students, offers 60 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.


 Debbie Stierwalt, program assistant, theology department, Whitworth University, (509) 777-3391 or

Lauren Clark, media relations manager, Whitworth University, (509) 777-4703 or