Groups and Classes
St. Stephen’s offers a wide variety of Bible studies, small groups, and classes. Some groups meet year-round, some for 10-week "covenant periods," some for other periods of time. Groups for the fall covenant period are listed below.
If you want to learn about Emmaus Groups, a particular kind of small group, please follow this link.
Wellness classes and contemplative practice groups are also offered.
We have several "guilds" at St. Stephen's Church, as well. Read about them here.
C.S. Lewis' The Great Divorce led by Bob Dibble | Mondays, 6:30 p.m. | beginning October 2
Bob Dibble will lead a discussion of The Great Divorce, which has been called C.S. Lewis’ Divine Comedy (by way of Danté). Actually, though, it was a response to William Blake’s The Marriage of Heaven and Hell; Lewis writes of their divorce. Inspiration for this story comes from the medieval idea of the refrigerium, the refreshment or vacation from Hell granted to some of the souls abiding there. So Lewis’ narrator leaves the dreary streets of the underworld and, with a coterie of other ghosts, journeys by flying bus to a lovely land that he comes to realize is the forecourt of Heaven. In that enchanted place, the ghosts meet many denizens from the heavenly world, who attempt to lure the poor souls out of their misery. Through these sketches, Lewis helps us wrestle with such timeless concepts as the nature of good and evil, of sin and temptation, heaven and hell, vanity and self-deception, and perhaps most importantly, with the power of our spiritual choices.
Bob will facilitate an exploration of Lewis’ theological fantasy as together we discover, or re-discover, the riches contained in this small but powerful book. Of course, the conversation will be strengthened by having read the book prior to the class, but you may read as we go. Class is full. Call 804.288.2867 to be added to the waiting list.
Education for Ministry | Tuesdays, 6:30 p.m.
Every baptized person is called to ministry. The Education for Ministry (EfM) program provides lay people with theological education to support their ministry. Dig deeper into the Christian faith, studying the Bible, church history, and theology. Reflect with the group on your life and how daily experience relates to your faith.
This four-year distance learning program was founded at the School of Theology at the University of the South (Sewanee) in 1975, and groups take part in in churches around the world, including St. Stephen’s. Space is limited, and annual tuition is required. To learn more, contact Richard Clary.
Inquirers Class led by Steve McGehee | Wednesdays, 6:30 p.m. | begins September 27 | email Janet Allen to register
This class includes the basics of what it means to be an Episcopalian. It’s the class new members take, especially if they wish to be confirmed or received in the Episcopal Church, but it’s also an interesting refresher course for lifelong Episcopalians. Questions are not only welcome, they form the basis for this class. The class concludes with an instructed Eucharist led by the rector. A winter section of this class will meet on Sunday mornings beginning January 28, 2018, and the spring class will meet Wednesday evenings beginning April 4, 2018.
Book Group led by Wilda Ferguson | 10:30 a.m. | first Thursday of the month | beginning September 7
This monthly book group selects books to read and discuss based on group interest. The books will have relevant faith components and may indeed challenge us in our faith. The group will begin the fall session on September 7 with a presentation by Becky Lehman of St. Stephen’s staff about her recent trip to New Zealand. The group will also decide on books to read for the rest of the year. Come with suggestions.
Please call the parish office at 804.288.2867 if you have questions.