Adult Education bridges our faith tradition with real life.
Adult Education for Fall 2020
Reckoning with Privilege: Where Christ Leads the Church When the World is Disrupted
Is there any unique contribution the church could offer during this time of growing unrest, uncertainty, and division? The Old Testament is full of instructions for how God’s people must care for the widow, the orphan, the oppressed, and the foreigner. The New Testament follows Jesus’ path from power to humility both in his incarnation and death. As seen in scriptural characters from Solomon to the rich young ruler, Dorcas to Zacchaeus, Boaz to Susanna, our Bible represents different ways those with resources or privilege are called to engage within the church and their world. Yet even Christians can’t seem to agree on how we must live. Fissures in the global church continue to deepen and, in the US, conservative and liberal Christianity seem more divided than ever. How do we reconcile these truths with Scriptural exhortations to be peacemakers, Christ’s ambassadors, and justice seekers? When are we called to overthrow the table and when are we called to sit at it with people who disagree? Is there a specific call to those of us at Westminster who inhabit places of unique privilege? The world’s eyes were drawn to Minneapolis after George Floyd’s killing, what is our witness?
October 18 & 25: Leon Rodrigues, Luther Seminary. Hear Leon Rodrigues reflect on his experience under the Apartheid System in South Africa. He will discuss what parallels and projections there might be for people of faith here in the Twin Cities and offer insights on how, in the wake of George Floyd’s murder, God might be calling the church.
Sunday morning, October 18, Adult Ed hour will feature remarks from Leon and a dialogue between him and Westminster’s own Vivian Nelsen. On the 20th, there will be a chance to engage Leon in a live Q&A. That session will be re-broadcast during Adult Ed on the 25th. To participate in the live Q&A session on the 20th, please register with Mahin.
November 1 & 8: The Rev. Dr. Shively Smith from Boston University will present “Watching Jesus Hang: Reading the Gospel accounts of Jesus’ Crucifixion through African American Biblical Histories.” This presentation explores the literary representations of Jesus’ death on the cross and the spectacle of violence and execution interpreted in African American Biblical histories. On the 8th, there will a live Q&A with the Rev. Dr. Smith.
November 15: Joint education hour with Social Justice Forum exploring James Baldwin’s essay, A Letter from a Region in My Mind and the implications for current events.
November 22: The Rev. Al Gallmon from Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church in North Minneapolis.
November 29 & December 6: Paul Capetz, pastor in Newport Beach, California, will discuss “Church and Theology in a Time of Pandemic: A Conversation with Matt Skinner.”
December 13: Joint education hour with Social Justice Forum addressing poverty in the Twin Cities.
December 20: Our very own Matt Skinner will address “Merry Christmas: How the Bible’s Nativity Stories Rebuke Our Empires”
Watch a new presentation every Sunday through Livestream beginning at 9:15 am and watch previous classes on the church’s YouTube channel.
The Bible Then and Now
Once a week, over five weeks, explore a theme from the Bible that relates to how we live out our faith. By looking deeper into the ways the Bible first spoke in its original cultural settings, we are better prepared to think faithfully and creatively about what Christian belief should be now, in our culture. As we take a conversational approach to reading scripture, we discover that it is less about arriving at “the one right answer” and more about opening ourselves up to see where God can be encountered in our lives and as we consider what contributes to the well-being of our neighbors.
The inaugural class begins Monday, October 19, 2020, and will run for five Monday evenings at 7-8:30 pm and discuss “Inclusion—Exclusion: It’s Hard to Know How to Be the Church.” More (pdf)
Living the Faith in the 21st Century
This Wednesday evening class, led by Dr. Chad Quaintance, explores what it means to live as faithful Christians today. Participants grow through learning and conversation. This class is held via Zoom.
Content experts from the Westminster community have developed a series of self-guided educational tours around the Twin Cities to significant sights with accompanying interpretive and devotional materials to help learners dig deeper. As materials become available to download, they will be added below. Click on the mini-pilgrimages that interest you most and head out as a small group, a household, or solo to run/hike/bike/drive to a series of 3-6 key sights representing each theme. Report back with pictures and commentary to Rachel Sheild Gustafson or post on social media with the hashtag #WestminsterOnTheWay.
If you are looking for a way to connect more deeply with others at Westminster, consider joining a small group. These groups gather to grow in faith and study to learn and live into God’s Word. To join a group, contact Mahin Hamilton.
New Groups for 2020 include:
This small group will be open to members and allies of the LGBTQIA+ community, a welcomed and integral part of Westminster Presbyterian Church.
Spiritual Practices: Creating Calm in the Midst of Chaos
Martha Rockenstein will lead a 6-week group on “Spiritual Practices: Creating Calm in the Midst of Chaos.”
Glory Happening: In a Season of Loss, How Do We Find “Enough”
This small group will explore the book Glory Happening by Kaitlin B. Curtice, which describes encounters with the Divine in everyday moments. How can we learn to perceive and relate to God, even in the small and mundane moments of our life?