For some people in the field, the annual meeting of AAR/SBL is a stressor: presentations, meetings, interviews, schmoozing, being "on" without a break. The way I see it, it's a professional excuse to spend one weekend a year in the same place as friends who live in dozens of cities around the country, with the added bonus that, concurrently, there happen to be a few interesting papers being read about God. Also, the book room.
I haven't had time to look through the conference program, though others have already combed through and found some good sessions. As it happens, this is my first year to present; so for those interested, I'll be reading a paper on Monday, 1:00-3:30 (better known as "AAR prime time"), as part of the Christian Systematic Theology section on "Community and Hierarchy," with Gerard Loughlin presiding. The paper is titled "An Undefensive Presence: The Mission and Identity of the Church in Kathryn Tanner and John Howard Yoder." Naturally, it continues my habit of putting Yoder into conversation with every theologian ever.
I'm excited about this year's meeting, if only because I've never been to Chicago before. Feel free to mention in the comments your own presentation or other interesting ones. See you soon.