International Seminars



Understanding Sobornost': theory, history and practice. Series 1



Belonging to a church, even if in decline, still remains a widespread form of human solidarity among Christians in the twenty-first century. However, notions of what constitutes a ‘church’ vary greatly not only among confessions, but also within institutional churches. Understanding and misunderstanding what a church is influences religious and social behaviour. It has an impact on how people relate to each other.  We would like to focus on the ways in which Eastern Orthodox Christians deal with the common Christian legacy of ecclesia, exploring this subject through theology, history and practice. To do this, we would like to organise a series of online seminars with leading experts in ecclesiology, political theology, church history and religious studies. 


 The seminars will focus on themes of conciliarity, synodality and catholicity in the Orthodox Church and address key concepts in Orthodox theology such as sobornost' which remains very little understood not only by general public but also by the academic community.  The talks will be recorded and made available for further viewing on youtube in order to reach audiences beyond academia. The language of the talks will be Russian or English; in some cases, we will aim to provide a translation. 


Our speakers are Prof. Andrew Louth, Prof Paul Valliere, Archimandrite Cyril Hovorun, Dr Anastassia Wooden, Dr Sebastian Rimestad, Prof Thomas Bremer and others.