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Hope Ecumenical Network Symposium

Wednesday, 9 November 2022 , 10am
Hope Park, Liverpool Hope University

Hope for the Future of Christian HE: Faith, Cooperation and Lived Experience

The inaugural international conference of the newly founded Hope Ecumenical Network will be a two day symposium of international, national, local and internal like minds with an interest in Christian higher education (HE), hosted at Hope Park, Liverpool Hope University, UK, and take place on 9 and 10 November 2022. It will foster an open, inclusive and ecumenical approach to considering the "Hope for the Future of Christian HE: Faith, Cooperation and Lived Experience". The Western university tradition grew from foundations in Christian HE institutions. Today, in an increasingly secularised world, the future of Christian HE is in question. The focus of the proceedings will be to consider the potential for greater cooperation across stakeholder groups and assess how the lived experience of faith within Christian higher education sits against a largely secularised context, where matters of faith are becoming increasingly privatised. The aim is to develop a dialogue that will continue and reach beyond the symposium in the hope we can work together and collectively better understand shared faith experiences and good professional practice from a more personal and reflective perspective. The symposium will include insights and reflections offered by leaders in Christian HE and involve ecumenical Christian worship, open debate, discussion, panel discussions, roundtable dialogue, a group excursion, hospitality and refreshments. Liverpool Hope colleagues are welcome to attend the conference. Please register your firm attendance, sending an email to no later than Friday 9 September 2022. 

Hope Ecumenical Network

The Hope Ecumenical Network is a Liverpool Hope University founded ecumenical network for all those with an association with the university, for example all  academic and support staff/fellows/volunteers past and present; all students past and present; and all faith partners (local, national and international) with an interest in Christian higher education, who are committed to the values of inclusivity, ecumenism (cooperation) and working together across Christian denominations and educational interests. The focus of the network is to enhance what unites us (rather than what divides us). All those with an interest in supporting the mission and values of inclusive Christian higher education in association with Liverpool Hope University are welcome to participate, including those from other faith backgrounds. 

If you would like to receive Hope Ecumenical Network communications and be part of the network, please email  

Founding Directors: Dr Anthony Ridge-Newman, Associate Professor, School of Humanities, and Dr Wendy Bignold, Associate Dean International

Internal Committee: Anglican Chaplain, Catholic Chaplain, Christian Union President, Stephen Pritchard, Anthony Costello, Peter McGrail, Andrew Cheatle, Stephen Shakespeare, Peter Winn, Ultan Russell, Fiona Pogson and Paul Rooney. 


Key Aims: 

- To administer a contact list for regular communications to be sent to interested parties (and develop a wider community in so doing)

- To offer a richer internal and local framework to help foster deeper connections with our local, national and international partners at Christian institutions around the world

- To add value for Hope colleagues through activities e.g. network away days at a location like Plas Caerdeon for ecumenical worship, reflection, sharing and writing

- To consider the place of Christian values in teaching, pedagogy and institutional structures through a community of practice

- To consider developing, hosting and/or contributing to wider activities and events in Christian higher education.


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