This year’s Crossroads: Faith and Culture Project focus week is October 29 to November 2. The keynote speaker is writer, illustrator, and theology scholar Lisa Coutras. Coutras will present a lecture titled “Engaging Literature in a Secular Age” in the convocation session on Monday, October 29 at 10 a.m. in Gaither Chapel.  In the evening, she will present “J.R.R. Tolkien’s Narrative Theology” in Howerton Lobby at 8 p.m. 

As part of Crossroads week, Montreat College will host “A Conversation about Tolkien and Lewis” with Lisa Coutras and Montreat College English professor on October 30 at 7:30 p.m. in the Chapel of the Prodigal.

Her final presentation will be on Wednesday, October 31 at 10 a.m. in Gaither Chapel.  Her talk is entitled “Redemptive Writing in a Secular Age.” All events are free and open to the public.

Coutras published her first novel at the age of 16, and went on to receive her undergraduate degree in Creative Writing and Philosophy at Houghton College. She has a Master of Theology from the University of Oxford and is in the dissertation phase of her PhD program at King’s College in London. Her research focus is the narrative theology of J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis, although her central area of interest pertains to the relationship of theology and imagination. For information about Lisa, her website can be accessed at

Crossroads: The Faith and Culture Project recognizes the powerful medium of the popular arts as a revelation of the realities of the human condition including its beauty and truth by seeking to engage with popular culture and to discern the positive and negative messages woven within culture as they relate either directly or indirectly to the Christian faith. Currently, Crossroads is on a three-year cycle focusing on music, film, and literature. This year’s focus is literature.