Milligan’s ‘Reconciliation Week’ stresses cultural unification

MILLIGAN COLLEGE, Tenn. (Feb. 18, 2016) — Milligan College’s “Reconciliation Week,” Feb. 22-26, will be full of student events—including art exhibits, film showings, readings and discussions—meant to foster meaningful conversations on the biblical themes of new creation, lament and hope, as well as raise multicultural awareness.

Reconciliation Week, which is the culmination of a chapel series addressing similar themes, will feature a public art show, “Reconciled: New Creation, Lament and Hope,” which will be on display the week of Feb. 22-26 in the Gregory Center Lobby and address the theme of reconciliation. This free show, presented by Milligan’s Office of Multicultural Engagement and the East Tennessee State University Slocumb Galleries Student Society, includes a reception, Thursday, Feb. 25, from 5-7 p.m.

“In a world fractured by conflict and torn by racial and ethnic tensions, the message of reconciliation must be proclaimed more urgently and confidently than ever,” said Jeff Smith, director of Milligan’s Office of Multicultural Engagement. “We hope students will grow in their faith through the activities, events and conversations that take place throughout the week.”

Since the beginning of the spring semester, Milligan staff, faculty and guest speakers have addressed these themes in a chapel series on reconciliation, as well. Dr. Miriam Perkins, assistant professor of theology and society, spoke for a special Convocation service on Jan. 19, the Tuesday after Martin Luther King Day.

“Dr. Perkins and the students who joined her brought those words to life in our Convocation service, reminding us that King’s vision of equality, justice and human dignity flows straight from the Gospel of Christ,” said Brad Wallace, Milligan campus minister.

The interactive performance for Reconciliation Week will feature several simultaneous experiences, including spoken word, dancing and visual art. Milligan’s English faculty will host an evening of poetry and prose readings about the various ways in which written words can facilitate reconciliation. Students also will have the opportunity to watch the film “Woodlawn,” which deals with racial and ethnic tensions in a Christian context.

The “Reconciliation Café” will provide students a low-key, coffeehouse style environment to explore questions and ideas that matter in small groups. In the World Café, participants will experience dishes prepared by students from around the world, promoting cultural reconciliation through the medium of food and storytelling.