Adult Formation Journal: May 10, 2018

Becoming Easter People: Session Six

In the course “Becoming Easter People,” we will learn how the first Christians lived into a way and a community that was grounded in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, and how deep prayer can be just as important for us as it was for those first believers.

Learning groups meet on Sundays at 9:15 and 11:45 and on Tuesdays at 10:30 in the Reception Room.

All are welcome.

Readings for Session Six

  • May 13 & 15 Acts 16:1-18:21
  • Conversations with Scripture: The Acts of the Apostles, Chapter 6 (Optional)
  • Armchair Mystic: Easing into Contemplative Prayer, Chapter 14 (Optional)

Outline of Acts 16:1-18:21

  • Acts 16:1-10 | Timothy recruited by Paul, directed by the Spirit through Asia Minor to Troas.
  • Acts 16:11-40 | Paul and Silas in Philippi.
  • Acts 17:1-15 | From Thessalonica to Athens.
  • Acts 17:16-34 | Paul at Athens.
  • Acts 18:1-17 | Paul in Corinth.
  • Acts 18:18-21 | End of the second missionary journey.

Conversation Guides for Session Six

  • Understanding the Text
  • Was Luke ever a companion of Paul? Explain.
  • How did Paul decide to go to Macedonia instead of Asia?
  • Who were some women that participated in Paul’s mission?
  • Who were the Epicureans and the Stoics?
  • Connecting the Text to Our Daily Life and Church
  • What are the gods of our world in the 21st century that Paul would have addressed?
  • What are some ideas of how our parish does and could proclaim the good news of Jesus?
  • How do you react when faced with hatred and hostility about something you believe in? Can you learn anything from Paul’s example?

Letting God Guide Us through Prayer

“In a way, I, as a pray-er am like an astronomer trying to understand the entire universe I call ‘me’ by visiting that ‘place’ where the Big Bang first banged. Once I do understand it, it is here in this place that my universe must be re-centered. My worlds must be put back on their axes, orbiting around the true Son. For what happens here at this micro-cosmos – this epicenter of my creation – ripples through all my existence. This re-centering is actually a re-perceiving, for God was, is, and always will be God. What is in need of repair, then, is the blindness that keeps me from understanding my divine origins and from experiencing God as the universe wherein my star shines.”

Learning Group Conversation Norms

Honest, open, focused, non-judgmental, shared, helpful, respectful, speak to the group

Learning Group Creed

I am beloved of God. I am on a faith journey with Jesus Christ that touches my heart, and I am grateful to be walking in faith with companions along the way. I don’t need to be right; I do want to be faithful.

Adult Formation Journal: April 27, 2018

Becoming Easter People: Session Four

In the course “Becoming Easter People,” we will learn how the first Christians lived into a way and a community that was grounded in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, and how deep prayer can be just as important for us as it was for those first believers.

Learning groups meet on Sundays at 9:15 and 11:45 and on Tuesdays at 10:30 in the Reception Room.

All are welcome.

Readings for Session Four

Apr 29 & May 1

  • Acts 9:1-12:25
  • Conversations with Scripture: The Acts of the Apostles, Chapter 4 (Optional)
  • Armchair Mystic: Easing into Contemplative Prayer, Chapters 8-10 (Optional)

Continue reading “Adult Formation Journal: April 27, 2018”

New Testament Stuff I Need To Know: Session 6

Chapter 8: Two Hidden Treasures   

Learning Group Discussion: 2/12-2/18

Reading Assignment Outline

Hebrews: Preaching as Theology

  • Author: anonymous, excellent Greek, rhetoric of exposition and exhortation, use of Torah
  • Date: between 60 and 90CE
  • Context: maybe ethnically Hellenistic Jews, also Christians,
  • faith community in danger of “falling away
  • superiority of Jesus to God’s earlier agents
  • engages the symbolism of the ancient cult, especially sacrifice
  • merging of biblical cosmology and Platonic categories (material/ideal, earth/heaven)
  • Christ is the perfect mediator between God and humans because he is (ontological) both divine and human, and because Christ’s mediating role is not static but dynamic (moral). p88
  • Christ represent humanity as its priest forever
  • cloud of witnesses
  • Jesus is both the cause of salvation and the model of obedient faith
6thC lunette mosaic, Abel & Melchizedek sacrificing - Basilica di San Vitale, Ravenna
6th-century mosaic in the Basilica di San Vitale, Ravenna, Italy, depicting Abel and Melchisedec making a sacrifice on an altar. Christians see scenes like this one as foreshadowing the Eucharistic ritual.


Continue reading “New Testament Stuff I Need To Know: Session 6”

New Testament Stuff I Need to Know: Session 5

FEBRUARY 2, 2017

Dear Saint James’ Learners,

I have attached two documents for our New Testament course. One is an updated version of the syllabus. The other is a worksheet which includes an outline for Chapter 7: Paul and His Letters, discussion questions, and the assigned Scripture passage with guidelines for praying the passage. I hope you will be able to read the entire chapter and pray the Scripture passage once a day for three days.

Continue reading “New Testament Stuff I Need to Know: Session 5”