Courtney giving a presentation

Welcome to the Association of Practical Theology

The Association of Practical Theology (APT) promotes critical discourse that integrates theological reflection and practice. Reconstituted from its predecessor organizations in 1984, the APT was sparked by the investigation of practical theology as an integrative hermeneutical endeavor at the heart of theological education, characterizing not only the ministerial sub-disciplines but also a manner and method of engaged reflection.

2022 Biennial Conference Update

Imagining Community Within Chaos: Re-membering, Re-energizing, and Futuring Practical Theology

Online Meeting, April 1-2, 2022

Nothing about the last year and a half has been normal, and this Biennial gathering of the Association of Practical Theology will reflect that reality. While there will be some typical conference activities, this conference/unconference will prioritize conversations, collaborations, and consultations with other scholar-practitioners in the field of practical theology. There will be time for lament around what we have witnessed, experienced, and survived in the past two years, as well as time for celebrations of milestones, completed projects, and innovations in our work. Much of our time together will be set aside for discerning conversations and building restorative connections as a way of responding to the realities of what has happened in our communities, churches, theological schools, and networks of belonging, and, in many cases, in generations of trauma leading up to this moment.

Together we will be envisioning: What are critical areas of research and teaching in practical theology that need attention at this moment in history? What are the forums and platforms emerging to contribute our expertise and experience in life-generating ways? How do we support one another in the vital tasks to which we are called as we discern where to lend our energy in the work ahead?



The Association of Practical Theology (APT) offers membership full of benefits that will enhance and enrich your understanding. Your membership gets you:

  • Biennial Conference Entry
  • Conference papers
  • Job Openings database
  • Members-Only articles
  • Members-Only online videos
  • Access to Members directory
  • and more

By Patrick B. Reyes

Far too much of the literature on leadership tells the story of heroic individuals creating their success by their own efforts. Such stories fail to recognize the structural obstacles to thriving faced by those in marginalized communities. If young people in these communities are to grow up to lives of purpose, others must help create the conditions to make that happen. Pastors, organizational leaders, educators, family, and friends must all perceive their calling to create new stories and new conditions of thriving for those most marginalized. The Purpose Gap offers both inspiration and practical guidance for how to do that. It offers advice on creating a safe space for failure and nurturing networks that support young people of color. Professional guidance for how to implement these strategies in one’s congregation, school, or community organization is also included.