The best courses are those that make you see the Bible, the church, or the world differently.
The recent Theopolis Architecture Course with Daniel Lee did exactly that.
Architect Daniel Lee began the week with architectural theory, continued through the week taking students through a history of architectural practice, and finished by having them examine their own creative side by designing a church building. Throughout the week, Lee incorporated many photos, blueprints, and videos to enhance his teaching with carefully curated visuals. Peter Leithart also delivered two lectures on aesthetics, and James Jordan delivered theological lectures on architecture in the Bible and liturgical practice.
Following typical Theopolis practice, the lectures were punctuated with worship in services of Matins, Sext, and Vespers. After lunch everyday, students engaged in lively conversation in a two-hour seminar led by Peter Leithart over different architectural essays and books.
“The Easter intensive course on Architecture and Liturgical Space proved to be both beautiful and intellectually stimulating, but also tremendously practical,” said Clint Hail. Clint is a regular Theopolis student from Dallas and is the Assistant Director of e3 Community Transformation with e3 Partners (a national and international church planting ministry). Clint continues, “This course helped me think more clearly about the issues we confront every day, in a more biblical and theologically rich way. As a result, I’m already retooling some of our approaches! And as with all of the intensive courses, the daily worship and fellowship are the highlight of the experience. The friendships I’ve made since coming to Theopolis Institute back in 2014 have become invaluable to me.”
By the end of the week, Daniel Lee had delivered his gift of sight to his students. Now, students don’t only see a world filled with different structures and signs. But, now students can see good and bad design, God-glorifying craftsmanship or lifeless architecture. Leithart and Jordan did exactly the same, but with aesthetical theory and biblical theology. Students are now better prepared to live in their church, the Bible, and the world in a way that brings clarity to confusion and beauty to chaos.
Enjoy a few photos from the course-week below. The two beautiful buildings, and the classroom are located at Beeson Divinity School.
Brian Moats is Assistant to Peter Leithart at Theopolis