ADULT FAITH FORMATION
As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.
- Colossians 2:6-7
SUNDAY MORNING SPIRITUAL FORMATION FOR ADULTS
Sunday Saintly Spotlight
Join us on Sunday mornings from 9:10 a.m. - 10:10 a.m. in the Reflection Room, as we take a deeper dive into the lives of some very special Black saints. The sessions on February 18, February 25, March 10, and March 17 will feature screenings of documentary films, sermons, and interviews, with time for discussion.
February 18 & 25: Pauli Murray, 1910-1985
The Rev. Dr. Pauli Murray was a civil rights activist, a pioneering feminist, a labor organizer, a lawyer, an Episcopal priest, and a poet who contributed immensely to the dismantling of segregation and discrimination in our country. Born Anna Pauline Murray, Pauli chose the gender non-specific Pauli. After growing up in Durham, NC, Murray’s failed attempt to study at the all-white University of North Carolina garnered national attention. In 1965, Murray became the first Black student to receive a JSD degree from Yale Law School. Murray wrote “Jane Crow and the Law: Sex Discrimination and Title VII” and “Roots of the Racial Crisis: Prologue to Policy,” both of which proved profoundly influential in challenging the legal foundations of racial discrimination. Later in life, Murray became the first African-American woman ordained as an Episcopal priest. The U.S. Mint plans to feature Pauli Murray on the quarter in 2024. A line from Murray’s poem “Dark Testament,” describing hope as “a song in a weary throat,” will be inscribed on the coin.
March 3: Journeys
Journeys is a group for adults who enjoy poetry, theological discussion, and diving into the deep topics of life and faith. Journeys typically meets on the first Sunday of each month. March’s gathering will feature poetry by a BIPOC saint – details forthcoming.
March 10: Absalom Jones (1746–1818) and Richard Allen (1760–1831)
The Rev. Absalom Jones and Bishop Richard Allen first met as enslaved men in the fields of Delaware. Later, as free men, Allen and Jones met again in Philadelphia, where they joined the congregation of St. George's Methodist Church. While Jones, Allen, and a number of other Black worshipers knelt in the gallery of St. George's for prayer one Sunday in 1787, white church leaders attempt to pull them off their knees and move them to another part of the church. Offended by the racism of the church, Allen and Jones led the Black members out of St. George's Methodist Church, never to return. They founded the Free African Society, which later joined the Anglican Communion and reorganized as the St. Thomas Episcopal Church of Philadelphia. Jones was ordained to the diaconate in 1795 and to the priesthood in 1805, becoming the first Black priest in the Episcopal Church. Allen remained affiliated with the Methodist church before becoming the founding Bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church.
March 17: Barbara Harris (1930-2020)
The Rt. Rev. Barbara Clementine Harris was the first woman consecrated a bishop in the Anglican Communion. Harris was long active in civil rights issues, participating in Freedom Rides and marches in the 1960s, including the Selma to Montgomery marches. She served as an acolyte in the historic service in which the first eleven women, now known as the Philadelphia Eleven, were ordained priests in the Episcopal Church on July 29, 1974. She was ordained to the priesthood in 1980, then elected suffragan bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts, in 1988. Eight thousand people attended the service, which was held at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston, Massachusetts. Amid the controversy of a woman bishop, she was urged to wear a bulletproof vest to her consecration, but she refused. She served in the role of suffragan bishop for 13 years, retiring in 2003.
ADULT CONFIRMATION CLASS
On Wednesday nights in September, Rev. Carmen will teach our four week “Episcopal 101” class for adults. This class is for anyone who is new to the Episcopal Church or anyone who wants a refresher. The class is required for anyone who wishes to officially join the Episcopal Church from another denomination. The class will cover our denominational history, structure, and worship, as well as how the Episcopal Church approaches scripture interpretation, theological/social issues, and living out our faith. The class will meet from 6:00-7:30pm on September 6, 13, 20, and 27 in the Reflection Room/Nursery (upstairs). To register for the class, please click HERE.