Word & Note 2022

The Divine Arts of Knowledge and Exultation
Saturday, June 25, 1:00pm – 8:00pm

With Diana Butler Bass ❃ Valarie Kaur ❃ Mihee Kim-Kort

Love Talks

Love speaks not only in the tongues of angels but also in all the tongues of humanity. Moreover, it speaks without lips or tongue—in actions too great, too intimate, to gracious for human language. Faith, hope and love, these three abide, still—the greatest of these is love, writes Paul to the church at Corinth because he wanted to show the church “a still more excellent way.” Love here is not a rush of good feelings, it is the sweet work of relationships, sometimes arduous and other times effortless, that validates one’s faith and hope. Which is how and why love talks.

In the twelfth chapter of Mark’s Gospel a teacher of the law asks Jesus which commandment is the greatest. Jesus’ reply was three-fold. Our three speakers for this year’s Word & Note will explore the three expressions of love Jesus named: Love of God, Love of Neighbor, and Love of Self.

Diana Butler Bass

Dr. Bass is an award-winning author, popular speaker, inspiring preacher, and one of America’s most trusted commentators on religion and contemporary spirituality. The late Marcus Borg called her “spontaneous and always surprising,” and Glennon Doyle praises her “razor-sharp mind” and “mystical heart.”

Her most recent book, Freeing Jesus, received praise from Anne Lamott, who writes; “Diana Butler Bass is one of only a few modern Christian writers who can absolutely blow me away with both spiritual insight and beautiful writing. She is a brilliant scholar and a wonderful storyteller, charming and devout, and deeply human.” Bass holds a PhD. in religious studies from Duke University and is the author of eleven books. Her bylines include The New York Times, the Washington Post, CNN.com, Atlantic.com, USA Today, Huffington Post, Spirituality and Health, Reader’s Digest, Christian Century, and Sojourners.    dianabutlerbass.com

Valarie Kaur

Valarie Kaur is a renowned civil rights leader, lawyer, best-selling author, award-winning filmmaker, educator, innovator, and celebrated prophetic voice. She leads the Revolutionary Love Project to reclaim love as a force for justice. She founded Groundswell Movement, Faithful Internet, and the Yale Visual Law Project to inspire and equip advocates at the intersection of spirituality, storytelling, and justice. Valarie’s debut book, See No Stranger: A Memoir and Manifesto of Revolutionary Love, was released in 2020 and expands on her “blockbuster” TED Talk.

In his review of her book, Brian McLaren writes; “In the first chapter of Valarie Kaur’s new book, I felt I was reading the best definition and description of love I had ever come across. As the chapters unfolded, I felt I was seeing rage, grief, healing, and joy all in a fresh light. See No Stranger is deep, brilliant, sensitive, emotionally moving, and absolutely needed at this critical moment in our history. It is, simply put, among the best books I’ve ever read.” Valarie earned degrees at Stanford University, Harvard Divinity School, and Yale Law School.      valariekaur.com

Mihee Kim-Kort

Mihee Kim-Kort is a Presbyterian minister and a self-described agitator, speaker, writer, and slinger of hopeful stories about faith and church. Her latest book, Outside the Lines: How Embracing Queerness Will Transform Your Faith, was reviewed by Jeff Chu, author of Does Jesus Really Love Me? Chu writes; “Mihee Kim-Kort does a beautiful, sacred thing in calling us back to love—love for our bodies, love for one another, but above all, God’s relentless love for us. With grace, elegance, and vulnerability, she weaves together elements of theology, church history, and her own story. With the heart of a pastor and the kindness of a friend, she demystifies queerness, opening up expansive possibilities for a liberated, whole life of faith.”

Her writing and commentary can be found in the New York Times, TIME, BBC World Service, USA Today, Huffington Post, Christian Century, On Being, Sojourners, Faith and Leadership, The Revealer (forthcoming), and Religion Dispatches (forthcoming). She is co-pastor with her spouse of First Presbyterian Church in Annapolis, MD and a doctoral candidate in Religious Studies at Indiana University, with degrees in divinity and theology from Princeton Theological Seminary and English Literature and Religious Studies from the University of Colorado-Boulder. mkimkort.com

Sunday Worship Plymouth Church 10:30am

The combined choirs of Plymouth Congregational Church and University Congregational Church will be accompanied by organists Chris Shaw, Helen Griffin and members of the Wichita Orchestra under the direction of Dr. Henry Waters.

Full Event Schedule


Saturday, June 25

1:00pm Welcome and Opening Session

1:30pm Love Talk I: Love of GodDiana Butler Bass

2:30-3:00 Book Signing and Break

3:00 Love Talk II: Love of Neighbor Valerie Kaur

4:00-4:30 Book Signing and Break

4:30-5:30 Love Talk III: Love of SelfMihee Kim-Kort

5:30-6:00 Book Signing and Break

5:30-6:00 Book Signing and Break

6:00-8:00 Reception with Word & Note Speakers, Appetizers Will Be Served, Cash Bar Available

Sunday, June 26, Worship at 10:30, Plymouth Sanctuary, with musical guests and orchestration.