Seminary @ Cornerstone

The Cornerstone Festival, held in Bushnell, IL each summer, is one of the largest and most diverse Christian festivals in the country.  In their own words,

This event called Cornerstone Festival is far more than a massive musical experience. It is more than a collection of hundreds of solo artists and bands representing every style and sub-genre on the current musical landscape. It is more than a gathering of expert thinkers and speakers offering over twenty separate seminar tracks on an amazingly diverse range of subjects. It is more than the sum of its parts, as is the body of Christ.

Cornerstone Festival is the annual gathering of a community of believers that is spread out all over the world. From young children to senior citizens, Christians of all ethnicities and backgrounds migrate to a patch of 500 acres in central Illinois for four days of fellowship, entertainment, education and edification. One way of looking at Cornerstone is to see it as a continuation of a Jesus movement that began in the first century and remains a beacon of joy and spirit as we move into the next millennium.

It should be easy to see, then, just why Northern was so excited to partner with the Cornerstone Festival in offering seminary course credit in conjunction with several of the various seminars that were being offered.  Check out the video below for a brief introduction to our vision for partnering with the Cornerstone Festival.

Seminary @ Cornerstone from Northern Seminary on Vimeo.

Led by Northern professor, Dr. Bob Price, Northern was proud to offer a course at Cornerstone on “Youth Subcultures.”

Following the Festival, Dr. Bob Price, had this to say,

I was struck by the common feeling of rejection that many of the young people expressed.  Many have been marginalized by their own local churches where they grew up for their outward appearance or taste in music. Many feel accepted by other goths, etc., but feel rejected by “normals,” making the local church the source of judgment and ridicule.

Jennifer Ould, a Northern staff member in attendance, adds,

There were many people who had attended Cornerstone for years and had questions about the sub-cultures they saw there, but didn’t know who they could ask. The Northern tent was filled to overflowing each morning.

Aside from the way in which Northern sought to add academic value to the experience of those attending the Cornerstone Festival event, we also went with a desire to listen and learn from those in attendance.  Jennifer Ould shares the reflections of one individual on this count;

One young goth woman told me that normally, she hates the “networking” side of Cornerstone that involves meeting and engaging new people. But this year, she said, meeting and spending time with the Northern Camp, was the highlight of Cornerstone for her.

We are beyond excited over the relationships that emerged from our involvement in the Festival this year and have tremendous anticipation for the many more that will develop in 2012 and years to come.  We hope you’ll join us.

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