Annual Conference

2017 Society of Vineyard Scholars Annual Conference

June 22–24, 2017
New Haven, Connecticut, USA

The eighth annual Society of Vineyard Scholars conference will be held on June 22-24, 2017 in New Haven, CT, USA.  This interdisciplinary, international conference is for Vineyard and “Vineyard-friendly” folks who like to think theologically in community. All are welcome!

Register today for SVS 2017 at

The conference will be hosted by Elm City Vineyard Church, and all meetings will be held on the beautiful campus of Yale Divinity School.

For non-US participants, registration fees will be covered and, where possible, host housing will be provided free of charge.

Check out the Conference Program Draft here.

After the conference, members of the Society will be able to download and discuss the conference papers by logging in on the SVS forum at

Conference Theme and Highlights

For three days, participants in SVS 2017 will:

  • engage in robust, generous dialogue about presentations of scholarship and artwork from a wide diversity of Vineyard voices.
  • enjoy fantastic plenary sessions with very distinguished speakers including Miroslav Volf, Sarah ShinMichael McClymond, and more.
  • sing, pray, and celebrate communion together — with worship led by David RuisTina Colon, and others.
  • make time to cultivate relationships old and new, some of which will become long-term and sustaining.

The conversations at this year’s conference are framed around interdisciplinary scholarly and pastoral reflection on the following themes:

  • The Kingdom and the Nations: Discipleship in an Era of Global Nationalism 
  • Pedagogy and the Kingdom
  • The Reign of God and the Flourishing of Cities 
  • The Vineyard and Protestantism

In addition, there will be a variety of focused, disciplinary conversations around a wide variety of topics will allow people to engage deeply with others who share a similar area of interest and expertise. Among these more focused conversations this year will be panels on:

  • Writing Vineyard History 
  • Reading Black and Womanist Theologies in the Vineyard
  • Poetry as Vineyard Theological Discourse 
  • Jon Bialecki’s new anthropological study of the Vineyard, A Diagram For Fire
  • Doug Erickson’s new study of the theology of the Vineyard, Living The Future
  • And much more …

There will also be several presentations of visual art and art performance throughout the conference, including sessions organized around theological responses to works of art done by Vineyard artists and artistic responses to Vineyard theological statements.

We also make significant time for prayer, worship, and listening to God each year.  We highly value the essential relationship between worship, the presence of God, and the life of the mind, and we live that value out in our time together. Many people have found that God speaks to them with profundity and power during worship and ministry times at SVS.

Finally, we will allow plenty of time at this conference for people to hang out and form relationships. There will be a wine and cheese reception, lunchtime breakouts for people with particular shared interests, and much more TBA. Across the board, our goal is to develop and nurture a community of theological discourse in the Vineyard, and we are committed to allowing the time and space that it takes to do so.

There are several seminars and special events on the program that require an RSVP in advance. Check them out on the program and RSVP using this form.

Hospitality for participants from outside the USA

Once again this year, thanks to the generous support of VineyardUSA and Elm City Vineyard Church, conference registration fees will be waived for non-US participants, and local housing will be provided, free of charge, for as many international participants as we can accommodate.

In order to secure free registration, non-US based individuals who want to attend SVS 2017 must still register (at no charge) for the conference, as well as pay SVS membership dues at

To request housing at the conference, non-US based individuals must fill out this form, and someone from Elm City Vineyard Church will be in touch with you. (If you have any problems or questions about housing, please email .)

Flying To New Haven

There are several options for flying to New Haven.

  • Tweed-New Haven Airport (airport code HVN), is approximately four miles from the Yale campus. It is a small regional airport serviced by US Airways via Philadelphia.
  • Bradley International Airport (BDL), Hartford, Connecticut  (53 miles to campus)
  • John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), New York, New York (80 miles to campus)
  • LaGuardia International Airport (LGA) in New York City (72 miles to campus)
  • Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR), Newark, New Jersey (92 miles to campus)

Best Advice: If you can get a cheap flight into HVN, take it. From there you can take a cab or a complimentary shuttle to the conference site.  If not, the next easiest option is BDL, though you will need to rent a car or sign up for a complimentary shuttle to the conference site.

If you must fly into LGA, JFK, or EWR for cost reasons, you can rent a car or you can take a train from Newark Airport or Grand Central Station in New York City.  Either of these options are easy to arrange, but will take at least two hours. If you have further questions about the logistics of any of this, please email and someone will be glad to help you.

Shuttle transportation from HVN, BDL, and Union Station – New Haven to the conference site will be provided at select times throughout the day on Wednesday, Thursday morning, and Saturday afternoon. If you want to take advantage of this complimentary service, provided by Elm City Vineyard, you must fill out this request for a complimentary shuttle to the conference site.

Conference Hotels

We have negotiated discounted rates for SVS 2017 attendees at two nearby hotels: the New Haven Hotel and the La Quinta Inn and Suites.

The New Haven Hotel is $169/night – and can be reserved by using this link, or by calling the hotel at (800) 644-6835 and reserving under the block “Society of Vineyard Scholars.” Parking at the hotel is $20 per day but since the hotel is located downtown a car is not as necessary. The hotel is a lovely 7-10 minute walk to the Yale Shuttle, which takes you directly to the conference site.

The La Quinta Inn and Suites is $108/night – and can be reserved by calling the hotel at (203) 562-1111 and reserving under the block “Society of Vineyard Scholars.” There is free parking onsite. The hotel is located just outside of Downtown New Haven so driving to the conference site will be necessary.

To secure the discounted rate, you must book by May 21st, 2017. PLEASE show your friendly conference organizers some love and book early — not at the last minute. This will help us immensely.

Room Sharing

If you are looking for a roommate with whom to split the cost of a hotel room, please fill out this form by May 21st. We will try to connect you with someone.

Ride Sharing

If you are looking for someone to share the cost of a rental car, please fill out this form by May 21st. We will try to connect you with someone.


If you plan to attend SVS 2017, there are a small number of partial travel scholarships available on a first come, first served basis.

To apply for a travel scholarship, you must do the following:

1. Register for the conference at
2. Ensure that your SVS membership is current at
3. Submit an estimated travel budget using this form.

All applications for scholarships must be received by May 15th, 2017. If necessary, priority will be given to applicants who are presenting a paper at the conference and/or applicants who are also traveling to attend the VineyardUSA National Leaders Meeting in July. However, even if you are not in one of these priority categories, do not be at all reticent to apply for a scholarship. Scholarship funds will be disbursed by check at SVS 2017.

Note: We do not want cost to be a prohibitive factor for anyone who wants to come to SVS 2017. Please do apply for a scholarship if it will mean the difference for you between being able to reasonably attend or not attend. We would be glad to help you. On the other hand, please do pursue alternative sources of funding if they are available to you, as our scholarship budget is small. We want to use it well.

Finally, if you would like to contribute to the SVS Scholarship Fund, you are welcome to do so through our conference registration site. Please see the “Donation” option at


Further details about the SVS 2017 conference will be added to this page as they become available. If you have urgent questions, please email .

See you in New Haven!