Rowan Williams Keynote Speaker at 2018 Yale Liturgy Conference

December 5, 2016

Yale Institute of Sacred Music (ISM) has announced that Rowan Williams, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, will be the keynote speaker at the fifth international liturgy conference at Yale University, to be held June 18 – 21, 2018.  The theme of the conference is “Full of Your Glory: Liturgy, Cosmos, Creation.”

The conference will explore ideas of creation and cosmos embedded in the worship life of the church at a time of unprecedented attention to ecological and cosmological concerns. Conference speakers will highlight some of the rich traditions of the past (ritual, visual, and musical, among others) and also address contemporary concerns.  The broader aim of the conference is to offer the resources of the liturgical tradition – and its particular insights – to the ongoing conversations around ecology and cosmology.  It will become clear that liturgy has always been about more than human beings at worship: specific understandings of creation and the cosmos are in fact at the heart of all Christian worship.
Rowan Williams served as Archbishop of Canterbury for ten years from 2002 to 2012. Since 2013 he has been master of Magdalene College at the University of Cambridge.  A Fellow of the British Academy, he speaks or reads nine languages in addition to his native Welsh, and has published many books, including studies of Dostoevsky, Arius, Teresa of Avila, and Sergii Bulgakov, together with writings on a wide range of theological, historical, and political themes. He is also a noted poet and translator of poetry.

 “This conference will address these important subjects in new and significant ways,” said Martin Jean, director of the ISM, an interdisciplinary graduate center at Yale University. “We are delighted to welcome Rowan Williams to Yale, who will add insight from a unique perspective, as well as draw global attention to these pressing ecological and cosmological issues.”

The conference is organized by the liturgical studies faculty at the ISM and Yale Divinity School: Teresa Berger, Melanie Ross, and Bryan Spinks, and is supported by Berkeley Divinity School at Yale.

Registration will open in mid-2017 at

NOTE: there is also a Call for Papers for the conference; details at