The Practical Theologian as Reflective Practitioner (2018)

July 10, 2018 - July 12, 2018

The Practical Theologian as Reflective Practitioner

The BIAPT 2018 annual conference was held from Tuesday 10 to Thursday 12 July 2018 at the University of Warwick.


In the many contexts of practical theology, the challenges of becoming and working as a reflective practitioner are many. Indeed, it may sometimes appear that practical theology requires the making of bricks without straw. Our theme for 2018 recognises that around Britain and Ireland and beyond there are many excellent examples of reflective practice that can help us tackle this challenge. In particular, we invite conference delegates to engage with the following two sets of questions:

  • What does good reflective practice look like? What difference does it make to you, to the rest of the world and the discipline?
  • How are we formed as reflective practitioners and how do we form others?

These questions are close to the heart of practical theology. Practice, reflexivity, integration and methodology are all pertinent here. Contributions that exemplify or analyse or do both are welcome – show and/or tell!

Keynote speakers

Dr Zoƫ Bennett
‘When I am an old woman…’: The Adult Theological Educator as Reflective Practitioner
Dr Zoe Bennett has been the Director of Postgraduate Studies in Pastoral Theology in the Cambridge Theological Federation with Anglia Ruskin University since 2000, where she has directed an MA programme in pastoral theology and a professional doctorate in practical theology. Her most recent books, both of which consider reflection and learning through autobiography are Using the Bible in Practical Theology: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2013; and (with Christopher Rowland), ‘In a glass darkly’: The Bible, Reflection and Everyday Life, London: SCM Press, 2016. She retires in August 2018 and looks forward to watching films, drinking coffee and wine with friends, and spending energetic time with her five grandchildren.

Dr Michael Paterson
Discipled by Praxis: Soul and Role in Context
Dr Michael Paterson is a priest, psychotherapist and pastoral supervisor. His professional background includes theological formation, hospice chaplaincy and parish ministry. He is the Director of the Institute of Pastoral Supervision and Reflective Practice and co-architect of the Scottish Government funded Values Based Reflective Practice programme for NHS Scotland.

Rev Peter Privett
Artist in Residence
Click here for further information.

Rev Dr Peter Stevenson
Keynote panel
Revd Dr Peter Stevenson is Principal of the South Wales Baptist College and Honorary Lecturer in the School of History, Archaeology and Religion at Cardiff University. Before moving to Cardiff in 2011 he was Director of Continuing Ministerial Development at Spurgeon’s College, London. In both London and Cardiff, he has been regularly involved teaching practical theology at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels. In addition to encouraging the development of reflective practitioners, his activity in the area of homiletics is visible in the recent SCM Studyguide to Preaching, (2017), and in the earlier volumes, written with Stephen Wright, Preaching the Incarnation (WJKP, 2010) and Preaching the Atonement (T & T Clark 2005 / WJKP 2009). Peter first attended the BIAPT conference in 2009 and is a member of both the Bible and Practical Theology and the Mission Studies Special Interest Groups.

Rev Dr Carlton Turner
Keynote panel
Rev Dr Carlton Turner is a Bahamian Anglican priest currently serving as an Anglican tutor at The Queen’s Foundation, with a specific role for supporting BAME students. Whilst serving a Black Country parish in the Diocese of Lichfield, Carlton completed a PhD at Queen’s through the University of Gloucestershire that explored the relationship between the Church and African religio-cultural productions in the anglophone Caribbean. As a Contextual and Practical theologian Carlton’s work explores the interface between church and often marginalised indigenous cultural productions.

Rev Claire Turner
Keynote panel
Claire is a full-time stipendiary priest and vicar of St Chad’s Church in Rubery (Diocese of Birmingham). She is passionate about parish ministry and loves the ‘fuzzy edges’ that come with being part of a church that is for everyone, even if many choose never to come. In a previous life she worked in the arts – both in community arts organisations and latterly, as Curator of Education and Interpretation at Ikon Gallery, a contemporary art space in the centre of Birmingham. She is still engaged in creative projects and looks to nurture such partnerships within her ministry.

Professor Peter Ward
Towards a Theology of Theological Reflection
Pete Ward is Professorial Fellow in Ecclesiology and Ethnography at Durham University, and is also Professor of Practical Theology at the Norwegian School of Theology in Oslo and at NLA University College in Bergen. He is the author of many books relating to practical theology, with the latest being Introducing Practical Theology: Mission, Ministry, and the Life of the Church (Baker Books, 2017).