The Learning Community
Churches are not neutral. They espouse values. They have a message. They have an agenda. They have vision of how things could be. There are, at lease, two responses to this reality. One is the way of indoctrination. Indoctrination has to do with imparting knowledge from one generation to another, or from a source of authority to newcomers. Indoctrination requires agreement as to a message, a vision, an agenda, a set of values. Because Seattle First Baptist is a place of varied messages, visions, agendas and values, indoctrination doesn't fit our needs.
The other way is by becoming a Learning Community. Seattle First Baptist Church has always had vital classes, and it has been a community where questions, searching, and openness are evident throughout our communal life. As we take tangible steps to become a more energized Learning Community, we realize that we learn in formal and informal structures. We learn as an attribute of our church. We are not a complacent church. Nor is this an entirety comfortable place. It is a place for seekers. It is a place where activists can find spiritual anchor and spiritual seekers can find their calling in the world. It is a place where Great Ideas that come from a variety of souces are confronted. It is not a place of conformity or uniformity.
We do seek to be a transforming community and we believe that God is the source of this transformation. As we make new commitments toward being a Learning Community, we open ourselves to God's transforming power at work in our midst. — Rev. Catherine Fransson, pastor
Our Adult Education Mission Statement
Adult Education at SFBC will enable adults individually and in community to grow in faith and its broader implications. To accomplish this: Adult education will provide programs that include opportunities for intellectual, emotional, spiritual and social growth that help adults to understand and practice what it means to follow Christ in today's world.
There are five basic themes under which classes have been offered:
- Biblical & Theological Studies,
- Spiritual Development,
- Personal Development,
- Church & Society and
- The Global Mind
Sunday Morning Adult Classes
Below are listed this weeks Adult Education Classes beginning at 9:30 a.m. until 10:40 a.m. Sunday Mornings at Seattle First Baptist Church. You can also check the Learning Community Calendar for other Learning Community dates, time, location and class topics for upcoming weeks beyond what is listed below.
- Wednesday evening, December 11, 2013 at 7:00 p.m.
Location: Church Parlor / Library
As your new Theologian-in-Residence I wanted you to know that I will be teaching a course on Wednesday evenings in November and December using a recently published book by Reza Aslan entitled Zealot (New York: Random House, 2013). Aslan is an eminently readable author, as evidenced by the fact that the book currently is 2nd on the NY Times list of non-fi ction hardcover books.
Aslan is an Iranian Muslim but was, for awhile, an evangelical Christian. He is also the author of what I think is the most “The Rest is up to You” accessible book on Islam, No God but God. Last year he spoke at the Search For Meaning event at Seattle University. Aslan draws on the political as well as the religious situation in Israel at the time of Jesus in order to give us a picture of how Jesus was perceived by those among whom he lived.
You do not have to read the book ahead of time to participate in the class, but I wanted to give you a “heads up” in case you wish to buy the book. I will be supplementing the information in the class from the writings of Jesus scholars such as Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan.
Bill Malcomson, teaching
If not, you can use our Bible - New Revised Standard Edition, Reference and Search page.
Beginning at 6:00 p.m., at Seattle First Baptist Church in Fellowship Hall we have our weekly Community Dinner. Everyone is invited. Reservations are required and the cost is $5 per adult or $10 per family. Please call the church office before Tuesday afternoon to make your dinner reservation.
Education and Action Groups
Though there are a number of groups in the church, two in particular specialize in education and action.
- The Eco-Spirituality Group
- Partners in Peacemaking Group
The Christian / Buddhist Meditation, Prayer and Study Group
Second and Fourth Sunday of each month from 5:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. at Seattle First Baptist Church.
If you feel that you might have an interest in joining in this experience, please see this website:
Or call or e-mail John Malcomson: 206.284.9489, email@example.com
Seattle Spiritual Synthesis
From time to time, we are given the opportunity to hear outstanding authors on spiritual topics, usually, though not exclusively, at Seattle First Baptist Church. This is a joint venture between Seattle First Baptist Church and Elliot Bay Book Store. In the past, we have hosted such authors as Karen Armstrong, Marcus Borg, and Molly Ivins.
Spiritual Life Events
Walk the Latyrinth on the second Sunday of each monthy anytime between 6:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. in Fellowship Hall.
Inquirers / Membership classes are conducted on a regular basis by our ministers and guest instructors. Discussion topics include: our personal spiritual journey, what it means to be Christian, what is means to be a Baptist, how one goes about joining our church and what membership means, the structure and life of Seattle First Baptist Church, and how to keep one's spiritual journey fresh and vibrant.
The Seattle First Baptist Church Library contains a far more extensive library that is usually possible in a church setting. It is open on Sundays from 10:30 a.m. until the beginning of the worship service at 11:00 a.m. and following the worship service for another half hour.
School of Theology and Ministry
In the future, we will be cooperating more fully with our theological instution, the School of Theology and Ministry. You can check the School of Theology and Ministry Calendar for other these events, dates, time, location and topics.
If you are interested in free-wheeling theological discussion on a continuing basis with a lively group of people, you might enjoy the seminary's theological colloquia program. One group meets on the second Tuesday of each month, noon- 1:30 p.m., and the other on the second Wednesday, noon-1:30 p.m. There is no cost. Bring a bag lunch, if you wish. Beverages and cookies are provided.