Sunday Morning Adult Seminar

September 2020 – June 2021

"Embracing The Prophets in Contemporary Culture" with Walter Brueggemann
Lead by Susan Bolduc
September 13 – October 18 2020
10:30 am on Sunday's via Zoom

Meeting ID: 843 6443 9242

The prophets have left a rich legacy for people of faith to study and to help us to understand the character of God. They are loved for their poetic prose. But who were the prophets and why did they become a voice of such opposition?

The prophets engaged in the hard work of truth telling about the reality of their country’s pending demise. Israel was in spiritual, political, and economic decline. There was great economic inequality, and the people were worshiping false gods. Although the empire was in decline, the culture still hailed the wealth and greatness of the nation. The prophets’ words broke through the cultural denial that all was well.

These courageous prophets were social outcasts who were often ignored and ostracized for their views. Jeremiah complained to God about how badly he was treated. He was threatened with death, deported to Egypt, he was beaten and put in jail, and thrown in a cistern. He was poor and rejected by family and friends. Rabbi Abraham Heschel, an old testament scholar, said that “The prophets are persons who suffer from a profound maladjustment to the spirit of society, with its conventional lies, with its concessions to mans weakness. This maladaptation can be characterized as moral madness (as opposed to psychological madness)”. The mind of the prophet seems to live in a realm different from the world which most of us inhabit. Yet, they bring back lessons that are of supreme importance to society.

Join us for this 6-week study for a fresh look at these passionate men whose lives were defined by their sympathy with God and concern for their community. Their extraordinary lives provide a lens through which we can view our contemporary culture and look for God’s intentions for our lives.

There is no reading required, but we have suggested readings for each lesson that will enrich the study.

Session 1: Moses, Pharaoh, the Prophets and Us
September 13 Exodus: Chapters 1-7, 13-14, 16-17, 19-20, 32

Session 2: The Prophets as Uncredentialed Purveyors of Covenant
September 20 Jeremiah 2:4-13, 20-22, 26-28. Kings: 6:1-7, 7:1-12, 7:48-51, 10:1-13,

Session 3: Moral Coherence in a World of Power, Money, and Violence
September 27 Micah 3:9-12. Hosea 4:1-3. Jeremiah 7:8-15

Session 4: The Shrill Rhetoric that Breaks Denial
October 4 Amos Chapter 7

Session 5: The Grief of Loss as Divine Judgement
October 11 Amos 6:4. Isaiah 5

Session 6: The Promissory Language that Breaks Despair
October 18 Isaiah 40:1-2, 65:17-18. Luke 1:46-55. Revelation 22:1-2, 6-7

A Contemporary Faith: The Saint John’s Bible
Lead by Michaela Eskew
October 25 – November 29 2020
10:30 am on Sunday via Zoom

The Saint John’s Bible is the first completely handwritten and illuminated manuscript commissioned by the Catholic church since the invention of the printing press. It’s beautiful artistry is found on every page, even in the mistakes. This isn’t your typical Bible, I assure you!

Join me in exploring Biblical texts in a way like never before, where contemporary science and history lie intertwined with the sacred scriptures and jump off the page in both texture and color.

Advent Series: Christian Liturgy 101
Lead by Michaela Eskew
December 6 – December 20 2020
10:30 am Sunday via Zoom

This Advent, let us learn about the faith and symbolism behind our Sunday morning services and church buildings. In our first week, we will explore the liturgical seasons and colors, unpack the symbolism and gestures we find in our churches and in our services, and finally talk about the scriptural basis for the different parts of worship. In our second week, we will break down some of our favorite Advent hymns and look into the theology and scriptures buried within. In our third and final week we will explore images of the Virgin Mary and Child from throughout art history and the Christian world. 

Coming in 2021

Faith & Justice: Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Sermons
Lead by Michaela Eskew
January 3 – January 17 2021

As we approach Martin Luther King Jr. Day and in the midst of a tumultuous year of racial conversations, we will spend the next three weeks listening to and reading five of MLK Jr’s most famous sermons and speeches. Along with his famous “I Have a Dream” speech and “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” we will also explore “The Death of Evil Upon the Seashore,” “A Time to Break Silence,” and “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop.” These speeches resonate with biblical allusions and deep theological understanding, while also transporting us right into the middle of the civil rights movement of the 50s and 60s.

How the South Won the Civil War: Oligarchy, Democracy, and the Continuing Fight for the Soul of America
Lead by Pastor Ralph Anderson
January 24 – February 14 2021

Created and Creating: A Lenten Journey through Artistic Spiritual Practices
Lead by Michaela Eskew
February 21 – March 21 2021

Intro to Marriage, Couple and Family Counseling
Lead by David Fenell
April 11 – May 9 2021

Stewardship: Creation, Culture, Time & Talents
Lead by Michaela Eskew
May 16 – June 6 2021

Thursday Night Bible Study

The Book of Acts
September 14 – December 14 2020
Podcast Uploaded to below every Tuesday morning

In this time of Pandemic, I couldn’t think of a more relatable text than the Book of Acts. Join me this Fall, as we put ourselves into the shoes of the First Apostles. Let us remind ourselves of our humble beginnings in the Early Church. Let us walk alongside Peter and Paul as they bring the Gospel to the world. And finally, let us learn from the disciples who began their ministry cowering behind locked doors only to be called by Jesus Christ to continue his ministry and to heal and proclaim their witness to a broken world. This Bible Study will be in the form of a 30-minute podcast, uploaded weekly to our website. This way you can read alongside me and challenge yourself with my commentary and questions whenever is convenient for you!

The Book of Ecclesiastes
February 15 – March 29 2021

This Spring, we will be diving into the Wisdom Literature of the Hebrew Bible. I can’t think of a better book to find comfort and solace in this Lent than the book that brought us: “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.” Let us explore in depth the wisdom that has lasted centuries and still rings true for us today.

A Place to talk

Join Pastor Hank and Dr. Fennell weekly on Thursday's at 10 am for continuing conversation on issues related to the pandemic and growing older gracefully.

Bible Study Podcast


Previous Adult Seminars and hand-outs:

July 12 2020 - "How did we get here?" A look at current events, important terms, and the ELCA's "Freed in Christ, Race and Ethnicity" Social Statement. You can find the slides here.

July 19 2020 - "Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?" Understanding Identity Development in Kids, Teens, and Adults. You can find the slides here.

July 26 2020 - "What about Latinx and Other People of Color?" A Discussion on Race Relations in General in America. You can find the slides here.

August 2 2020 - "How does one even become 'anti-racist'?" Signs of Hope and Steps to Move Forward. You can find the slides here.