Creative Writing, Peace and Prophecy

Journal

Trinity International University welcomed poet Dave Harrity on Tuesday, Nov. 19 and Wednesday, Nov. 20 for “Making Manifest Live,” a series of lectures and workshops that discussed the role of creativity as a spiritual discipline.

The series was named after Harrity’s most recent book, Making Manifest: On Faith, Creativity, and the Kingdom at Hand. The book is a 28-day devotional that uses writing exercises to focus on and promote the intersection of creativity, community, and the church.

While at Trinity, Harrity led two writing workshops. In the first workshop, participants—which included both students and staff—read and discussed a series of poems hand-picked by Harrity, who then led a writing exercise similar to those featured in Making Manifest. Between the two sessions, participants were given a second exercise to complete for the second workshop, where they discussed their creative processes and asked Harrity for advice on how to revise their own pieces.

Harrity also held two open lectures during his visit. The first lecture discussed how the church can re-imagine their efforts in making peace with their neighbors and communities through the use of creativity. The second lecture examined how poetry has been used to prophetically promote peacemaking. The lectures wrapped up with a discussion on how students and staff can make an effort to utilize peacemaking strategies on Trinity’s campus and in the Deerfield community.

In addition to the recent publication of Making Manifest, Harrity has several accomplishments in the creative community. A professor at Campbellsville University in Kentucky, Harrity is also the founder of Antler, an organization that helps Christian communities use creativity as a discipline for spiritual formation. He has published one book of poetry, Morning and What Has Come Since, and has a second due out in 2014. His poetry has been published in several literary magazines and journals, including Relief: A Christian Literary Expression, which is run by TIU Associate Professor of English Dr. Brad Fruhauff.

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