Saturday, Nov 2, 9:00am – 4:30pm @ Westside King’s Church

To act justly, love mercy and walk humbly have quietly fallen out of vogue. Instead, we live in an era where responsibility has been confused with admiration and guilt relief. Playing it safe and keeping it clean has become our path and prize. Could anything be further from the original Source?

Survival of the Weakest will create an environment to expose the systemic dysfunction that has co-opted the Church’s engagement in issues of freedom, peacemaking and spiritual formation. Celebrated keynote speakers Ron Sider [Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger] and Shane Claiborne [The Irresistible Revolution] will engage participants to help move the Church away from servicing clients and towards cultivating whole and healing communities.

Join us for “Survival of the Weakest: Justice, Mercy & the Local Church” as we discuss and examine God’s mission to renew all things.

Saturday, Nov 2, 2013 @ Westside King’s Church

9:00am – 4:30pm.


Speakers (more to come)

shane claiborne

Shane Claiborne, author of “The Irresistible Revolution”

Shane Claiborne graduated from Eastern University and did graduate work at Princeton Seminary. In 2010, he received an Honorary Doctorate from Eastern. His adventures have taken him from the streets of Calcutta where he worked with Mother Teresa to the wealthy suburbs of Chicago where he served at the influential mega-church Willow Creek. As a peacemaker, his journeys have taken him to some of the most troubled regions of the world – from Rwanda to the West Bank – and he’s been on peace delegations in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Shane is the visionary leader of The Simple Way, a faith community in inner city Philadelphia that has helped birth and connect radical faith communities around the world. He is married to Katie Jo, a North Carolina girl who also fell in love with the city (and with Shane). They were wed in St. Edwards church, the formerly abandoned cathedral into which homeless families relocated in 1995, launching the beginning of the Simple Way community and a new phase of faith-based justice making. where everything started back in 1995.

ron sider

Ron Sider

Ron Sider is known worldwide for providing leadership to the movement of evangelicals who recognize not just the spiritual, but also the social and political implications of a high view of Scripture. His book Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger was lauded by Christianity Today as being among the top 100 books in religion in the 20th century and the seventh most influential book in the evangelical world in the last 50 years.

In addition to Rich Christians, Dr. Sider has written more than 30 published books, including Evangelism, Salvation and Social Justice; Christ and Violence; Cry Justice: The Bible on Hunger and Poverty; Completely Pro-Life; Good News and Good Works: A Theology for the Whole Gospel; Living Like Jesus; Just Generosity: A New Vision for Overcoming Poverty in America; The Scandal of the Evangelical Conscience: Why Are Christians Living Just Like the Rest of the World?; The Scandal of Evangelical Politics: Why are Christians Missing the Chance to Really Change the World?; and I Am not a Social Activist: Making Jesus the Agenda. His most recent book is Fixing the Moral Deficit: A Balanced Way to Balance the Budget. He also edited The Early Church on Killing: A Comprehensive Sourcebook on War, Abortion, and Capital Punishment.

wendy gritter

Wendy Gritter

Wendy is an internationally recognized contributor in the conversations around faith and sexuality.  As an avid student of the church, she is committed to equipping the local congregation to nurture radical hospitality. 

Active in social media, check Wendy out on TwitterFacebook and blog  and join in the conversation!

Wendy has served as the Executive Director of New Direction since 2002. 
Email Wendy
Wendy’s podcasts

Jamie Wright

Jamie Wright

Jamie Wright authors The Very Worst Missionary, a simple blog detailing her life overseas and recent return to the North American suburbs. She writes candidly about life, faith, and Christian missions; pulling back the curtain for a look at the messy realities of the missionary lifestyle. These lively discussion have been a catalyst for churches and individuals to examine their own missions practices and the attitudes that drive them, leading to a healthier interchange between the Church and the world.

Acerbic wit and blunt honesty have given Jamie a unique voice in the missions community, where she is actively calling for financial, ethical, and personal transparency. You can find her “inappropriate remarks, embarrassing antics, and generally lame observations” at

Joel Thiessen

Joel Thiessen

Dr. Joel Thiessen is Associate Professor of Sociology at Ambrose University College in Calgary, Alberta. He specializes in the sociology of religion, particularly religion and culture in Canada, and he has a passion to bridge sociology with theology to better understand and help the “least of these” in society. He regularly teaches a course on “Social Problems” and frequently speaks in various church settings on an array of sociological topics of interest to the church today. For more information, see his personal website at

Julie Kaye

Julie Kaye

Julie is Assistant Professor of Sociology at Ambrose University. Her research interests include human trafficking, development, migration, immigration, migrant worker programs, sex work, sexual exploitation, and policy. She is currently preparing a book manuscript on the politics of human trafficking in Canada. She has also led a research investigation examining the local response to human trafficking in Calgary, Alberta with the Action Coalition on Human Trafficking (ACT) Alberta and the Centre for Criminology and Justice Research (CCRJ) at Mount Royal University, Calgary. Julie currently serves as a Research Advisor for ACT Alberta and has also researched and published peer-reviewed articles on ethnicity, conflict, and peace-building in West Africa. You can view more about her at

Jayson BressererJayson Besserer

Jayson Besserer is a staff member of Mennonite Central Committee Alberta in Restorative Justice Ministries. Working with offenders and ex-offenders, he coordinates a prison visitation and support program in Bowden Institution (M2) and works in the Circles of Support and Accountability program which seeks to safely re-integrate high risk offenders into the community. Jayson also has a private practice in therapy specializing in treating depression, anxiety, and trauma.

MCCABMCC Alberta Peace Team

This group of MCC staff exists to support and grow the local peace programs of MCC Alberta. MCC Alberta’s peace program works towards partnering with communities both locally and internationally to raise awareness around our global need for peace. Their hope is to build up people with a consciousness for peace in a world so often divided so that we can talk with each other about how to live out peace in all aspects of our lives. It is as underlying goal to recruit and train peace promoters throughout Alberta that will engage with us, and motivate and encourage us all to take our place as the peacemakers that God has called us to be.


Alyssa Hudel

Alyssa has a passion to create a just world for every child. As a dedicated child advocate, she works with End the Wait Calgary–an initiative of Focus on the Family Canada that seeks to help connect children in government care with the foster and adoptive families who want to welcome them home. Alyssa has worked in adoption and child advocacy for the past 8 years as a registered social worker. She believes engaging the Christian faith community to care for vulnerable children is one way we can all be involved in bringing about God’s redemptive healing and transformation right here in Calgary.

Event Info


map of westside king's church


  • $45

  • Students

  • w/valid ID
  • $55

  • Groups of 5+

  • Ends October 31
  • $65

  • Regular

  • Ends Oct 31
  • $95

  • At the Door



8:30am Registration/ Check In
9:00am Main Session 1
10:00am Workshop 1
11:00am Workshop 2
12:00pm Lunch (not included)
1:00pm Main Session 2
2:10pm Workshop 3
3:15pm Main Session 3