Join us for Summer Adult Education with the Bethesda Clergy

In our world of limited gatherings, we have discovered that the opportunity to come together virtually, and especially to learn together, feeds so many within our community. To that end, the clergy and other members of the community will offer classes this summer that meet by Zoom. The leader of the class has decided on beginning and ending dates, but the members of the class together will figure out the best time to meet within those weeks. Please find a description of the five courses below and be in touch with the clergy member leading the class to express interest or ask questions.

 

Sticks and Stones; An History of American Houses of Worship—Fr. Burl Salmon

(Five weeks beginning week of June 15)

In this reprise of the 2018 Middle Way course (with some added examples!), we will examine the history of American sacred architecture from its various beginnings in the European colonies through present day iterations. An image-based course, no background reading is necessary, and we won’t be following a text. Instead, we will look closely at the buildings our Christian, Jewish, and Muslim brothers and sisters have built to house our worshipping communities and talk about functionality, symbolism, as well as theology as expressed in the built environment.

To sign up for this class please Contact Fr. Burl Salmon at salmon@bbts.org.

Can’t we all get along?Bonhoeffer’s Life Together—Mtr. Margaret McGhee

(Five weeks beginning week of July 6)

During the summer of 1938, Lutheran pastor and theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote a short book he titled Life Together. The book considers Christian community–what it is, and what it ought to be. Bonhoeffer’s thoughts arose out of his experience founding an illegal seminary in Hilter’s Germany, but they have much to say to Christians in every time and place. Over five weeks, we’ll discuss the five chapters of Bonhoeffer’s book.

To sign up for this class please Contact Mtr. Margaret McGhee at mcghee@bbts.org.

Reading the Bible for Fun and Prophet—Fr. James Harlan

(Old Testament, three weeks beginning week of July 19)
(New Testament, four weeks beginning week of August 10)

Have you ever sat in one of our adult forum or Middle Way gatherings with questions about the Bible, about how to understand it, about how it’s God’s Word, or about how to make it a deeper part of your spiritual life? Have you ever, in those moments, thought, ‘I bet I’m the only one wondering this?’ Well, you’re not the only one. We all know the Bible is important in some way, and we all have favorite passages and verses. But not many of us have ever had the experience of reading it with some confidence that we can glean from it, learn from it, and allow God to speak to us through it.

We’re going to simply read the Bible together: favorite passages and some of those we’d probably prefer weren’t in there at all. We’re going to talk about how to read, how to understand, how to find reliable aids, and how to pray with it to find peace and courage and clarity about our identity and our calling.

Join us for either the Old Testament or the New Testament or both as we walk through the text, talk about how to choose a great Bible to use, and how to find helpful online resources.

To sign up for this class please Contact Tierra Harper at harper@bbts.org.

Why does it always have to be about race? A study of White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Robin DiAngelo—Fr. Burl Salmon

(Four weeks beginning week of August 3)

During these four weeks, join Fr. Burl in a discussion of this best-selling book in which the author delves unabashedly into the the difficulty of talking and race and racism, especially for members of the dominant culture, who have controlled the narrative of race in America since its founding. The text is challenging and rewarding and leaves the reader thinking far beyond the confines of the class and after its conclusion.

To sign up for this class please Contact Fr. Burl Salmon at salmon@bbts.org.

Sore FeetPilgrimage in life, literature, and liturgy—Mtr. Margaret McGhee 

(Three weeks beginning August 17)

Over the centuries, pilgrims have walked roads to holy places. Pilgrims are seekers, but it’s often hard to pin down what exactly it is that they seek—and what they find often surprises them. In this three-part class, we’ll discuss the pilgrimages of our own lives, the theme of pilgrimage in art and literature, and the role of pilgrimage in the liturgy of the church.

To sign up for this class please Contact Mtr. Margaret McGhee at mcghee@bbts.org.