Classes

"My mind has been challenged and awakened by our time together. I have become so bored with Bible studies. Even thinking I know more than I do! But you have awakened me to dig deeper. It’s not just a story, but a journey of God’s people. I keep discovering pieces that put the puzzle together into a beautiful story of the unconditional love of our God. I can’t wait until next week."

All classes meet online using Zoom unless otherwise noted in the description. After registration, you will receive confirmation within moments. A couple of weeks prior to the first class, you will receive an email that will provide all the details you will need for the class. You will be sent a Zoom link on the day of the class. There is no cost for these classes; donations will be requested and are always optional.

All times are Eastern Standard Time.

CURRENT & UPCOMING CLASSES

Holy Land Study: Along the Road with Jesus

Mondays
7:00 pm – 8:45 pm EST
September 13 – October 25, 2021

Jesus’s teaching gains fresh relevance through this fascinating study of Bible stories separated by centuries, but related by shared geography. In Along the Road, John Beck delves into the conversations that would naturally occur if you had walked with Jesus along a first-century road. Journey with us as we weave the Old Testament context of each locale into Jesus’s experience there, and discover how these easily overlooked geographical and cultural details can enhance our understanding of the scriptures. In addition to the book, a Bible (any version) is necessary for the class. 

Sessions:

  • Bethlehem: Birth of Salvation
  • Into the Wilderness: Baptism and Temptation
  • To Mount Moreh: Raising a Widow’s Son
  • Toward the Gihon Spring: The Coronation
  • To the Decapolis: Casting Out Demons
  • To Mount Hermon: Son of the Living God
  • To Mount Arbel: Sermon on the Mount and the Great Commission

Dr. John A. Beck is a scholar, educator, and writer with extensive experience in biblical geography. He has a PhD in theology (Hebrew and Old Testament) from Trinity International University and is an adjunct faculty member at Jerusalem University College in Israel. His passion is to make the wisdom of the Bible understandable, and he has been writing on the topic of biblical geography for more than twenty years, both within and outside of the Middle East. 

Searching for Sunday

Meets Monthly, 3rd Tuesdays, mostly
7:00 – 8:30 pm EST

Like millions of her millennial peers, Rachel Held Evans didn’t want to go to church anymore. The hypocrisy, the politics, the gargantuan building budgets, the scandals–church culture seemed so far removed from Jesus. Yet, despite her cynicism and misgivings, something kept drawing her back to Church. And so she set out on a journey to understand Church and to find her place in it.

Centered around seven sacraments, Evans’ quest takes readers through a liturgical year with stories about baptism, communion, confirmation, confession, marriage, vocation, and death that are funny, heartbreaking, and sharply honest. A memoir about making do and taking risks, about the messiness of community and the power of grace, Searching for Sunday is about overcoming cynicism to find hope and, somewhere in between, Church.

Sessions:

  • October – Baptism

  • November – Confession

  • December – No Class

  • January – Holy Orders

  • February – Communion

  • March – Confirmation

  • April – Anointing of the Sick

  • May – Marriage

Wakening in the Word

Sundays
9:00 am – 10:45 am EST
April 11 – October 31, 2021

Bring your cup of coffee/tea and your Bible. We will follow The Story, one section at a time, as it unfolds throughout Scripture. Join in anytime, but we officially begin on April 11. The New Testament begins in September. Come to one or come to all. Bring your Bible (any version). Reading plan will be provided.

Wakening Anti-Racism

Monthly on 2nd SUNDAYS
5:15 – 6:45 pm

After reading and discussing the books, White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo and So, You Want to Talk about Race by Ijeoma Oluo, we are continuing the conversation. Join us anytime. We meet once a month (usually the 2nd Sunday). Once registered, you will receive a link to view a movie, conversation, or documentary online, in advance. This is a safe place to learn about our history which will inform our present struggles.

Our purpose is to grow in knowledge as we move towards action. Living as an antiracist requires us to speak up and step in whenever we witness injustice. We encourage all to take small steps in our current sphere of influence and work to expand our sphere of influence.

Our discussions are facilitated by Rev. Linda Zastovnik, Rev. John Ryan, Dionne Howard and Frances Hamilton. Rev. John Ryan has a MA from the Presbyterian School of Christian Education in Richmond, VA. He received his D.Ed.Min. from the Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, Georgia. He serves as Pastor for Faith Formation at Davidson College Presbyterian Church in Davidson, NC. Dionne Howard, Ed.S. has enjoyed a 30 year career as a classroom teacher, adjunct professor, instructional coach, and staff developer. Frances Hamilton is a retired career educator with experience as a classroom teacher, literacy facilitator, curriculum writer and staff in-service developer. Additionally, she has been a Montessori teacher and held a position in a School Admissions Office. As a Black woman, she also brings the experience of growing up in the Jim Crow South

PAST CLASSES

Praying for Afghanistan 

Friday, Sept. 10
7:30 – 9:11 pm EST

As the anniversary of 9/11 approaches we reflect on our world, on the serious life changes for the people of Afghanistan, and for the future of the thousands of refugees who have fled their homeland. We are mindful of the extreme emotions of our own troops who have served. Our country is so fragile due to polarizing opinions, views, facts and lies.

Come and sit with us; bring your worries and your fears. Lea Burt will share a bit of what he has learned about the differences between Islam, the Taliban and ISIS-K. He will also address your questions (submitted in advance) and we will close with a short prayer service.

Along the Road by John A. Beck Book Cover

Murals on the walls at the US embassy on July 30, 2021 in Kabul, Afghanistan.

Summer Reading

So many books, so little time! For all (meaning all genders, all ages), this summer you will love each of these three books. We will meet on the last Tuesday of each month to discuss. Sign up for one, two, or all three. Include your spouse and/or friend.

Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger. Discussion led by Carey Bullock. Tragedy strikes Frank’s family—which includes his Methodist minister father, his mother, older sister and kid brother—he finds himself thrust into an adult world full of secrets, lies, adultery, and betrayal. Forty years later, he discovers the terrible price of wisdom and the enduring grace of God. 

Wearing God by Lauren F. Winner. Discussion led by Rev. Kake Nations. Lauren Winner, an Episcopal priest who teaches at Duke Divinity School, notes there are hundreds of metaphors for God, but the church only uses a few familiar images: creator, judge, savior, father. Let’s explore some others: God as clothing (“clothed with Christ”), as the vine/vintner who animates life; the lactation consultant; and the comedian. Oh, I love God as the comedian!

Peace Like a River by Leif Enger. Discussion led by Janice Mack. Eleven-year-old Reuben Land, an asthmatic boy in the Midwest has reason to believe in miracles. Along with his sister and father, Reuben finds himself on a cross-country search for his outlaw older brother who has been charged with murder. Family, love, and faith can stand up to the most terrifying of enemies, and the most tragic of fates. 

Book Study: A Year of Biblical Womanhood by Rachel Held Evans

 

Rachel Held Evans died unexpectedly last year at the age of 37. Strong-willed and independent, she embarked on a radical life experiment–a year of biblical womanhood. Intrigued, she vowed to take all of the Bible’s instructions for women as literally as possible for a year. Pursuing a different virtue each month, we will delve into the scriptures alongside her book. With just the right mixture of humor and insight, compassion and incredulity, A Year of Biblical Womanhood is an exercise in scriptural exploration and spiritual contemplation. Join us in the lessons of her life.  

In the Holy Land

with Ray Vander Laan

During The Rock, the Road, and the Rabbi, we learned about teacher and guide, Ray Vander Laan. This class includes visiting 5 sites in the Holy Land-virtually-with Pastor Ray. You will be amazed with each class how the land informs your understanding of scripture. You will be provided with a study resource at no cost.

No book required. Materials will be provided.

Christ in the Passover

The Passover is the Old Testament feast that celebrates and remembers God’s liberation of Israel from Egypt. It also foreshadows Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. Learn the history and significance of this sacred event. You will be provided with materials to print and guidance in preparing your own Seder meal for the event (optional).  

 

Wakening Women

June-August

Wakening Women returns this summer with more stories of biblical women—some we’ve met before, some will be new—and connecting them to contemporary global gender issues. In doing so, Rev. Katey Zeh speaks truth to women’s oppression and erasure while reminding us of the sacredness of women’s experience, wisdom, solidarity, and sisterhood. The book is suggested but not required. 

Book is suggested, not required.

Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus

Nabeel Qureshi describes his dramatic journey from Islam to Christianity. Providing an intimate window into a loving Muslim home, Qureshi shares how he developed a passion for Islam before discovering, almost against his will, evidence that Jesus rose from the dead and claimed to be God. Unable to deny the arguments but not wanting to deny his family, Qureshi struggled with an inner turmoil that will challenge Christians, Muslims, and all those who are interested in the world’s greatest religions.

Engaging and thought-provoking, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus tells a powerful story of the clash between Islam and Christianity in one man’s heart–and of the peace he eventually found in Jesus.

Taught by Lea Burt, Led by Rev. Linda Zastovnik. Lea Burt is semi-retired from the air conditioning business where he was a design engineer for 40 years. Now he enjoys traveling with his wife, Robin. When not working on their horse farm, Lea enjoys fly fishing, golf, and road biking. Lea was raised in a Methodist family and has been active in the church ever since.

Book Study: The Rock, the Road, and the Rabbi 

Connect deeper with the Bible and your faith as Kathie Lee Gifford journeys with Messianic Rabbi Jason Sobel through Israel, studying the Bible in its Hebrew context.

The Rock (Jesus Christ): Hear directly from Kathie about her life-changing and ever-deepening connection with Jesus, the Lover of her soul.

The Road (Israel): Explore dozens of ancient landmarks and historical sites from Israel, the promised land of God’s covenant.

The Rabbi (God’s Word): Go beyond a Sunday-school approach to the Bible by digging into the original languages and deeper meanings of the Holy Scriptures. Jason’s insight into the Hebrew language, culture, and heritage will open your eyes to the Bible like never before.

Bible Study: In the Beginning

You may think you know these stories. Or, you may have begun to read the Bible, but couldn’t get through Leviticus (I know!). From Genesis to Deuteronomy, we will get the big picture of the first five books of the Hebrew Bible and learn its foundational message. In addition to the scriptures and the stories we will learn more about The Torah and its significance to Jews – during the time of Jesus and today. Our class time will include viewing videos produced by The Bible Project. If you join in to Zoom by audio only, you can view the videos on your own.

No book is needed but your Bible (any version). If you do not yet have one, let me know. Invite others!

The Journey

It’s a story you know by heart, but The Journey combines historical information and archaeology with Adam Hamilton’s thoughtful, conversational teaching style to give you a new perspective on the story of Mary and Joseph’s journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem.
Journey to the Holy Land with pastor and best-selling author Adam Hamilton retracing the actual path of Mary and Joseph’s journey to Bethlehem.

Bible Study: Revelation

There have been quite a few jokes about 2020 being a year that everything has gone wrong: a global pandemic, fires, hurricanes, and riots. What does the Bible say about such things? Where is God in the midst of it all? What is the truth about the “End Times?”

Book Discussion: Clutter Free by Kathi Lipp

Peace within us can be impeded by clutter around us. Learn new habits to help clear out your clutter, simplify your space, and take back your life. Do you spend valuable time moving your piles around the house, but you can never find that piece of paper when you need it? As you try out the many easy, doable solutions within the book, you’ll begin to understand why you hold on to the things you do, eliminate what’s crowding out real life, and make room for the life of true abundance God wants for you. 

 

Prayer & Discernment

Learn more about prayer by practicing prayer. For 7 weeks, we will learn about prayer through the book, The Quest, by Beth Moore. Is there a question you have for God? Is there a decision or a concern where you are seeking direction?

People of Peace

Meet 6 people who have made a difference by choosing peace: Jesus Christ, Mother Teresa, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Mahatma Gandhi, Elisabeth Elliot & Rachel Saint. You will receive a handout each week prior to the class. 

Abundant Peace — Jesus Christ
Calming Peace — Mother Teresa
Worldly Peace —  Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Living Peace — Mahatma Gandhi
Forgiving Peace — Elisabeth Elliot & Rachel Saint

Seeking Peace One Day

Do you know that International Peace Day is September 21? If not, it’s because you have never heard the story behind it. Once you do, you will never forget it. You will be sent the link to view the documentary online. 

Join us online as we pray for peace on Peace Day. We will join the “Global Peace Wave” with a Minute of Silence at noon.

September 21 from 11:45 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Online Prayer for Peace
Global Minute of Silence at Noon

Christianity and World Religions

Adam Hamilton, explores four major world religions: Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam and Judaismand compares the beliefs of each with those of Christianity. As Christians, we must build bridges with others so that we might grow in our faith and seek peace in our world.


Matthew Bible Study

Dig into the very first book in the New Testament.. We will read 2-3 chapters each week and view a short clip from the Visual Bible: Matthew. In this dramatization, the complete Gospel is presented word-for-word based on the New International Version of the Bible. Whether you’ve never studied the Bible before or you are a master of the text, you will engage with this gospel in a new way. Join us as we walk with Jesus through his life, ministry, death and resurrection.

 

The New Testament You Never Knew

N.T. Wright will lead us in discovering things we never knew about the stories within the New Testament. Through reading the New Testament we continually discover that God indeed keeps his promises, but those
promises don’t always look like what people expected. Especially when it comes to Jesus. Sessions include: The Books of the New Testament; The World of Jesus and the Apostles; The Life and Death of Jesus; The Resurrection of Jesus; The Ministry of the Apostle Paul; The Early Christians and the Church; The Mission of the Church; The Creation of the New Testament.

 

Beginning in the Bible

Everyone began learning what’s in the Bible by first learning about the Bible. Through this class you will learn the basics: Old & New Testaments, Bible Stories, How to Find Things, Understanding The Big Picture, and about different Bible Versions.
No Bible? No problem! Request a free one!

White Fragility

White fragility is defined as the discomfort and defensiveness on the part of a white person when confronted by information about racial inequality and injustice. In this in-depth exploration, Robin DiAngelo examines how white fragility develops, how it protects racial inequality, and what we can do to engage more constructively.

 

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