Adult Forum, beginning Sept. 9, Experiments with Format

Adult Forum, beginning Sept. 9, Experiments with Format

This fall adult forum is considering a somewhat different format…one in which topics are only presented in chunks of Sundays, but on more of a rotating basis. September and November will be the experimental model. October and December will present longer series, more as in the past. Please check out both formats– and provide some feedback, what works best? We mean the Adult Forum to be help you develop your spiritual life, which after all is one of the main purposes of church!

WHAT TO DO WITH THE SPACE MICHAEL LIVED IN? Adult Forum kicks off the new year September 9 with a discussion of how the congregation should best put to use Michael’s former apartment space in the Fox Building. The various proposals that have been developed will be made available to the congregation beforehand. On the 9th, our leaders trained in the circle process will lead the morning’s discussion so that everyone and anyone can have their questions answered, their voices heard and their ideas registered.

LIVING THE QUESTIONS From the nitty-gritty of what to do with the apartment, adult forum moves to theology on September 16. Whiplash! Michael frequently reasssures the congregation that doubts and questions are okay and are pretty much the norm for Old Firsters. In that vein, Bastian Liu will introduce adult forum to the outstanding discussion series, Living the Questions. Yes, this is the series that was started in an evening group a couple years ago, but everyone’s calendars seemed to get in the way.

The series is way too good to pass up, so it will be featured on rotating Sunday mornings. I once had a pastor tell me that discussions of theology were not for the laity. Living the Questions, the polar opposite to that pastor’s comment, is an open-minded alternative to studies that attempt to give participants all the answers. It features thirty of today’s leading religious voices and turns viewers into participants who interact with each other and explore the best of today’s theological thought. Join in! Other Living the Questions dates for the fall are September 30 and November 4.

For the four Sundays in October, Joanna Robinson will present a participative Bible Study. Working through a series of biblical texts, the people at the forum will be asked to center themselves, listen carefully and share what they hear in the biblical text. Joanna is a trained Spiritual Director, and this method helps us develop our “listening hearts” and our own spiritual perspectives.

In December, Bob Robinson, will lead us through the Advent lectionary to the festival of Christmas. The format of this bible study is a bit more scholarly as Bob is the Old Testament professor at Lutheran Theological Seminary and is loved for the scholarly acumen with which he helps us crack open some of the most familiar texts as if we are reading them for the first time.

STAMMTISCH Honoring are German heritage, once or twice during the fall, adult forum will try to be its own Cafe Ole’ (where sometimes the OF crowd is seen catching up over coffee in the hour before church). Adult Forum can be a casual round-table kind of coffee clatch during which participants can talk about almost anything, including the innovations we’re trying this fall: what kind of format works best—rotating topics or “block scheduling”.

Do join in. It would be great to see new faces. We’re almost all people you know, and if you don’t, what better way to get acquainted. If you have any questions or comments, please speak with Nancy Donohue.