Let’s Talk – Fall 2018

Watch Paul Baxley’s invitation to Let’s Talk– The Bible and Public Life here.  Like what you see?  Share it with a friend and invite them to join us!

How is the church called to bring good news to those trapped in poverty?  Watch the introduction to Paul Baxley’s sermon here.

September 5 – October 24

Let’s Talk: The Bible and Public Life is a series of questions providing opportunity for worship, reflection, and the building of stronger relationships marked by open conversation and learning from one another. Conversations about intensely difficult matters in our rapidly changing culture occur all around us. Discussions take place on television, radio and social media. Yes. much of the public and political discourse of our time is filled with intense and angry conversations between people who do not see these cultural changes in the same way.

This series of sermons and dialogue together is designed to create space for personal reflection, honest searching, and open conversation in community about matters of faith and life. However there is no intention to bring our congregation to any formal vote, policy position, or unified position on any of the questions involved.

We believe that as a faith community, we have a responsibility to open ourselves to explore the texts of Christian faith within the current context of our lives. Our purpose is to listen to each other, encourage each other, and offer different faith perspectives in an open, safe, caring and supportive environment.

The series is open to guests as well as our members.

Sunday Worship
Each week in the series our Sunday worship and sermon will introduce the question for that week’s reflection and conversation.

Small Group Discussions
Midweek intergenerational discussion groups are offered on Sunday morning, Sunday afternoon, Tuesday noon and Wednesday evening.

Community Conversations
A weekly community conversation for those who are in worship but who are not yet ready to join a regular discussion group will be offered off-site for those who want more opportunity to dialogue about the question of the week.

The Questions and the Schedule
The seven questions we will explore in this Let’s Talk series are:

  1. Sunday, September 9: How should the Bible guide Christians as we reflect on matters in public life?

Texts: Psalm 119:97-105, Matthew 4:1-11, 2 Timothy 3:14-17

  1. Sunday, September 16: How is the church called to bring good news to those trapped in poverty?

Texts:  Isaiah 61:1-4, Luke 4:16-21, 16:19-31, Acts 4:32-37, James 2:1-7

  1. Sunday, September 23: How should Christians today pursue racial reconciliation?

Texts:  Ephesians 2:11-22, Acts 8:26-40, John 4:4b-26

  1. Sunday, September 30: What is a faithful response to gun violence?

Texts: Psalms 44:4-8, 85:8-13, Matthew 2:16-18, 5:6-9, Mark 6:14-29

  1. Sunday, October 7: How can the church offer healing in response to sexual abuse?

Texts:  II Samuel 11:1-5, 12:1-15a, I Thessalonians 4:3-8

  1. Sunday, October 14: How do we know if God is calling gay and lesbian Christians into ordained ministry?

Texts: Galatians 3:26-28, Acts 11:1-18, Ephesians 4:11-16, I Timothy 3:1-7

  1. Sunday, October 21: What is God saying to us through immigrants?

Texts: Genesis 18:1-10, Leviticus 19:33-34, Luke 10:25-37

Small Group Conversations
There are four options for joining a small group during the series. These times are:

  • Tuesday Noon beginning September 11
  • Wednesday Evening at 6:00 p.m.  beginning September 5
  • Sunday Mornings at 8:30 a.m. beginning September 9
  • Sunday Afternoons at 5:00 p.m. beginning September 9

Groups have been formed.  If you did not sign up for a group but would like more information on how you can participate, please contact Frank Granger.  Childcare will be available for the Sunday morning gatherings as well as Wednesday evening.

Groups will hold initial meetings in the week beginning Sunday, September 2. The first meetings will offer group members a chance to get to know each other and learn how the weekly discussions will be handled. Then for seven straight weeks beginning Sunday, September 9 and concluding the week of Sunday, October 21, the groups will meet to explore the question of the week.

Our youth will have opportunities to explore these questions in their Sunday night gatherings, and families with children will be provided materials to assist in family discussions of these matters.

Community Conversations
Guests to our church who wish to explore the week’s topic in a group conversation with one of our staff members and lay leaders may meet with us on Wednesday evenings at 6:30 p.m.

Livestream of Sunday Worship
For those who are unable to attend on a Sunday may join us live by going online to connect to the livestream of our Sunday worship on this website.