From time to time FaithXperimental features stories about faith communities engaging their communities in innovative and experimental ways.
Today’s FaithXperimental Spotlight features the New Story Festival being held on March 29-31 in Austin, Texas. The New Story Festival is a new annual gathering for community, creativity, and the common good: a bold experiment for a better world, embodying imagination, spirituality, social action, and playful connection – defined above all by the practice of love.
The FaithX Project will be an organizational sponsor of the event, and Ken Howard has been invited to submit several proposals for presentations at the festival. FaithX and our newly launched and independently-governed SHERM Journal (Socio-Historical Examination of Religion and Ministry) are festival sponsors. And because FaithX is a partner organization, those who register through the FaithX portal get a $20 discount.
As the Festival website says, the world runs on stories – the narratives that fuel the ways we live in this world and relate to one another. Our stories can liberate or oppress, encourage reconciliation or further separation, inspire new life or even bring death. But when we become conscious of our stories, we can begin to change them. Believing that “the best criticism of the bad is the practice of the better,” the New Story Festival seeks to lead us into a better story – one that encourages growth and liberation, healing and harmony; a story where the downtrodden are uplifted and everyone is included.
The festival hopes to gather artists, activists, teachers, practitioners for spiritual/emotional health & wholeness, along with numerous other social innovators to share their creativity, practices, and stories at a three-day (Friday afternoon to Sunday evening) outdoor festival of several thousand people on the campus of Huston-Tillotson University, in the heart of historic East Austin. There will be music, art, and stories, speakers and workshops, conversations both formal and spontaneous, helping us step into a better story – one with the potential to transform both Austin and the world. The festival will also hold a preview event in Austin on November 3.
The program will include nationally-known headline speakers like Brian McLaren, as well as influential local leaders. Each evening will feature high-profile music acts while the daytime will be filled with inspiring sounds from local up-and-comers.
Is your faith-based community or organization doing something innovative and experimental to engage or transform the neighborhoods and communities it serves? Write about it and send it to [email protected]. You might find your story featured here.