“Spirituality, Culture and Well-Being. A multidisciplinary conference for scholars, researchers and the community”, Sydney

Spirituality, Culture and Well-Being

A multidisciplinary conference

for scholars, researchers and the community

The Context

  • We live in a secular, pluralistic society.
  • The former certainties of traditional religions have slipped away.
  • Diverse spiritual and cultural expressions undermine a shared understanding of what it means to live well.


The Conference

  • appreciates and critiques cultural diversity
  • encourages a rich, multi-layered understanding of well-being
  • probes interactions between spirituality, culture and well-being
  • engages multiple perspectives from theology, the social sciences, education, and the creative and performing arts
  • promises a challenging and rewarding experience for those considering the complexities of contemporary life


Excelsia College is sponsoring an international research conference to be held on Tuesday 4 & Wednesday 5 October 2016 at its campus located at 69-71 Waterloo Road Macquarie Park NSW Australia.


All papers peer-refereed before the Conference will be included in the

published Conference Proceedings


Selected papers will included in an edited Volume based on Conference themes



Keynote Speaker

Christo Lombaard

Professor of Christian Spirituality, University of South Africa


  • Christo’s best known publication is The Old Testament and Christian Spirituality (Atlanta, Georgia: Society of Biblical Literature, 2012), which was awarded the 2013 Krister Stendahl medal for Bible scholarship by the Graduate Theological Foundation, USA.
  • Christo’s research specialisations include Biblical Spirituality, Post-Secularism, Spirituality Theory, Sexuality and Spirituality (including Song of Songs), Communication Media and Spirituality, the Patriarchs of Ancient Israel, and Pentateuch Theory.
  • He holds two doctorates: a PhD in Communications (North-West University, Potchefstroom, specialising in Religious Communications), and a DD in Theology (University of Pretoria, specialising in Old Testament Studies).
  • Christo is a South African National Research Foundation rated researcher, and a regular contributor to conferences across the globe.


Call for Papers

The conference will consider a broad range of theory, scholarship and research at the interface of theology, spirituality, culture and well-being with a core emphasis on how theology and spirituality can contribute to a richer understanding of culture and well-being – and vice versa.


Indicative topics include but are not limited to:

  • The contribution of theology and/or spirituality to cultural expressions, including within the creative and performing arts, literature, and the popular media
  • The contribution of theology and/or spirituality to individual well-being, including the physical, mental, ethical and relational dimensions of human well-being
  • The impact of public life and culture, including modes of education, social welfare, and leadership and governance, on the form and content of theology and/or spirituality
  • Ways in which cultural, social and educational institutions can facilitate positive contributions to the dialogue between theology, spirituality culture and well-being
  • How expressions of theology and/or spirituality may need to change in order to contribute more widely to culture, public life and personal and social well-being


Expressions of Interest including proposed title, presenter, presenter’s affiliation and contact information should be emailed to Maureen Miner Bridges (see below) by Friday 27th May 2016.


Abstracts of 150 words are to be submitted via email to Maureen Miner Bridges by Friday 1st July 2016. Confirmation of acceptance of abstracts for a paper will be provided by 15th July.

Papers should be approximately 5000-6000 words and the conference presentation

no more than 30 minutes. Presenters may nominate to submit their papers for peer review in order to have their paper(s) published electronically in the ERA compliant Conference Proceedings. In addition, there will be a separate published monograph comprising selected papers from the conference.


Authors requesting peer review for publication must submit their papers by Friday 19th August. Reviews will be sent to authors by 16th September and final papers (including any revisions as a result of reviewers’ comments or discussion at the conference) must be received by 21st October.

Conference Organiser

Dr Maureen Miner Bridges

Director of Research

Excelsia College


Conference Committee

Dr Maureen Miner Bridges, Prof Martin Dowson, Dr Peter Davis, Dr Mark Stephens