Faith Formation

Percolate (Adult Formation)

Percolate is wrapping up our study of Stand Your Ground: Black Bodies and the Justice of God by theologian Kelly Brown Douglas. This book has indeed proved to open our eyes to our own privilege and has challenged us to live out our calling and commitment to being Just Peace individuals and a Just Peace church.

Upon completing Stand Your Ground: Black Bodies and the Justice of God, we will tackle Holy Envy: Finding God in the Faith of Others by Barbara Brown Taylor. After she left the pastorate, Taylor taught Religion 101 at Piedmont College, a small Georgia institution, for 20 years. This book arose from what she learned about other religions – and about her own, Christianity – by engaging with faith in an academic setting and taking her students on field trips to mosques, temples, and so on. The title phrase comes from a biblical scholar named Krister Stendahl who served as the Lutheran bishop of Stockholm. At a press conference prior to the dedication of a controversial Mormon temple, he gave a few rules for interfaith dialogue:

  1. When trying to understand another religion, you should ask the adherents of that religion and not its enemies.
  2. Don’t compare your best to their worst.
  3. Leave room for holy envy.

Taylor emphasizes that appreciating other religions is not about flattening their uniqueness or looking for some lowest common denominator. Neither is it about picking out the aspects that affirm your own tradition and ignoring the rest.. This book counsels becoming comfortable with not being right, or even knowing who is right. We will seek to be up to this challenge.

As usual all are welcome, whether or not you’ve read the book. We meet around 8:30 before the worship service and the coffee will be percolating.