Adult Discussion Group

In-depth

Enlightening dialogue

Join us for a lively, in-depth, single-topic, 70-minute discussion, typically featuring a knowledgeable authority. Share your views during the Q&A period. 8:30 AM every Sunday in the Assembly Hall.

Next Sunday’s Discussion

Christian Practices Video lead by Rich Sundeen

Date & Time:Sunday, March 4, 2018 - 8:30am

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NEXT SUNDAY’S PRESENTATION

Christian Practices Video lead by Rich Sundeen

Date & Time: Sunday, March 4, 2018 - 8:30am

What is your definition of religions?  How do you practice yours?  And how has your practice changed over your life time?  We will be viewing and discussing a video on Christian Practices featuring Marcus Borg, a well known biblical and Jesus scholar on Sunday, March 4. Rich Sundeen will lead the discussion.  All are welcome. We begin at 8:30 AM in the Assembly Hall.  All ages are welcome.

RECORDINGS OF PAST DISCUSSIONS

"Religion and the State" Part 3 by Gary Hartzell

On February 18 Gary Hartzell will conclude his 3-week series about “Religion and the State” as envisioned by our founding fathers.  The Constitution doesn’t mention God, yet Americans are a demonstrably religious people.  What were the Founders thinking?  What was their notion of the proper relationship between church and state?  Was America founded as a Christian nation or as something else?  Gary Hartzell will explore how Washington, Franklin, Jefferson, Adams, Madison, and others regarded religion in their own lives and its proper role in the life of the nation they created.  All ages are encouraged to participate.  We begin at 8:30 AM in the Assembly Hall.

"Religion and the State" Part 2 by Gary Hartzell

On February 11 Gary Hartzell will continue his 3-week series about “Religion and the State” as envisioned by our founding fathers.  The Constitution doesn’t mention God, yet Americans are a demonstrably religious people.  What were the Founders thinking?  What was their notion of the proper relationship between church and state?  Was America founded as a Christian nation or as something else?  Gary Hartzell will explore how Washington, Franklin, Jefferson, Adams, Madison, and others regarded religion in their own lives and its proper role in the life of the nation they created.  All ages are encouraged to participate.  We begin at 8:30 AM in the Assembly Hall.

"Religion and the State" by Gary Hartzell

On February 4th Gary Hartzell will start a 3-week series about “Religion and the State” as envisioned by our founding fathers.  The Constitution doesn’t mention God, yet Americans are a demonstrably religious people.  What were the Founders thinking?  What was their notion of the proper relationship between church and state?  Was America founded as a Christian nation or as something else?  Gary Hartzell will explore how Washington, Franklin, Jefferson, Adams, Madison, and others regarded religion in their own lives and its proper role in the life of the nation they created.  All ages are encouraged to participate.  We begin at 8:30 AM in the Assembly Hall.

ADG: "The Psychological Roots of Terrorism" by Dr. Sophia Pandya

Dr. Pandya discusses a variety of motives driving young people (mostly teenage boys) to join terrorist groups, and she gives many examples.  Most of these recruits are searching, in one way or another, for meaning in their lives.  Many of them do not understand the teachings of their religion and come from somewhat dysfunctional families.

ADG: "Courageous Conversations Intro" by Rev. Allen Hilton

Allen introduces his concept of “Courageous Conversations” in which potentially divisive church issues are dealt with by church members in a respectful way that maximizes the prospects of honest and amiable sharing of divergent perspectives and of finding common ground.  Allen continued this discussion later after our 10 AM church service (not recorded).

ADG: "Wally's Sabbatical" by Wally Hoeger

Wally discusses how her sabbatical last summer, including its hospice training, has broadened her religious skill set and added to her pastoral development.  She learned how the methods for treating people in hospice care often can be quit different from those for people in normal medical care.  Wally shares some to the hospice situations that she was dealing with for the very first time, and how this experience has changed her.

ADG: "Alexander von Humboldt" by Rev. Ignacio Castuera

Rev. Ignacio Castuera discusses the enormous impact that Alexander von Humboldt made two centuries ago by exposing the consequences of European plundering of Latin America’s virgin natural resources.  Humboldt was the first person to scientifically and methodically study the impact of this European exploitation of the “new world’s” pristine environment.  As Humboldt’s efforts began to threaten the profits of these European enterprises, they fought back to limit his impact and to erase him from our history books, as Ignacio explains.

"Alexander von Humboldt" by Rev. Ignacio Castuera

Our topic on January 7 will be “Alexander von Humboldt” who some people call the father of environmentalism and who was probably the world’s pre-eminent naturalist prior to Charles Darwin (who came 30 years later).  During Humboldt’s 5-year visit and scientific study of Latin America’s natural environment, he saw the adverse impact (exploitation) of colonial cash crop cultivation, washing away top soil and changing a then mostly virgin and pristine landscape into barren land.  Our speaker will be Rev. Ignacio Castuera, who was born in Puebla, Mexico, holds a Doctor of Religion degree from Claremont School of Theology, and has been a pastor, a psychological counselor at UCLA, National Chaplain for Planned Parenthood, professor, and environmental activist.  We begin at 8:30 AM in the Assembly Hall.  All ages are welcome.

Adult Discussion Group: An Overview of Christianity's First Thousand Years

On December 24th our topic will be “An Overview of Christianity’s First Thousand Years” and will feature a History Channel DVD.  Starting immediately after Jesus’ crucifixion, the topics covered include the many varieties of Christianity that initially emerged, the conversion of Emperor Constantine, the Council of Nicea, St. Augustine, St. Patrick and the Irish monks, Byzantium, the rise of Islam and its affect on Christianity, and Pope Leo and Charlemagne.  The following Sunday (December 31st) we will cover the second thousand years of Christianity.  We begin at 8:30 AM in the Assembly Hall.  All ages are welcome.

Adult Discussion Group: Connecting Locally with Other Faiths

Rini Ghosh, a Hindu, and Jim Greer, a Mormon, discuss the role that the South Coast Interfaith Council (SCIC) plays in:
  • educating the public about the many religions that are active in southern L.A. county,
  • improving communication among these religious groups, and
  • performing volunteer efforts to address major social needs in our local area.
Two 6-minute videos were shown as part of this presentation, and since this audio recording can not effectively capture the video message, you may want to skip over these two segments.  The first video starts at 2:58 and runs until 9:18.  The second video starts at 14:41 and runs until 21:22.

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