Cary Presbyterian Church:

Adult Christian Faith Formation, 2017-18

We hope you will share the excitement we have about our classes. We believe they better meet needs for solid, traditional style classes, classes that are more relationship-oriented, and more fluid offerings that do not require a series or weekly, consecutive attendance. We trust that all of these offerings will be relevant and will enrich your faith journey.

The scope of Adult Christian Faith Formation, concentrated in the Sunday School hour on Sunday mornings, is very broad since we see faith as relevant to every area of our lives. We seek to provide biblical, theological, and historical context for both new and old insights to be examined by presentation and open discussion. Subject matter is biblically oriented, while also including diverse topics and ways of looking at faith. There are courses offering help and hope for spiritual growth and courses exploring the implications of our faith.

Recognizing the diversity of our member needs and interests, we offer variety in format. Please note that there are three continuing classes and two new classes being formed on Sunday mornings. (Adult I Bible Study, Bible and Beyond, Young Families all return. Faith TODAY and possibly several Connections Classes début.) With enough interest, some courses or educational experiences may be offered throughout the year. Watch for news of these in future months.

The Christian Faith Formation (CFF) Team wishes to support your personal, individual learning as well. We have our own faith formation website called Faith Formation 24-7, with websites for prayer, Bible study, and other support. There is also a page for adult learning, a page for parents, for teens and for children. Here is a link to it:


We invite you to read below about upcoming adult faith formation classes and feel the excitement about new learning. See you in class!

Adult Christian Faith Formation Sunday School: 9:45 to 10:45 a.m.

Continuing Classes

Adult 1 (Parlor): Covenants with God, September - June

This popular adult curriculum, based on the Uniform Series, enables Christians across the globe to study the same Scriptures and topics on the same Sundays throughout the year.

“Covenants With God” considers the major covenants God made with people on behalf of the earth and the human community. Beginning with Noah, God promised benevolence toward creation. God made similar commitments with Abram, Phinehas, and Ezekiel. Ultimately, the covenant forms the foundation for the coming Messiah and salvation for the world.

Leaders: Kim Herring, Wayne Honeycutt, and Libby Graybeal

Bible and Beyond (Room 109): “This Changed Everything - The 500th Anniversary of the Reformation” (a DVD documentary), September 10 - November

Celebrates the fruits of the Reformation while exploring difficult questions about the cost of division: Could schism have been avoided? Is there hope for reunification? What did Jesus really mean when He prayed for His followers to be “one”?

The Rise and Fall of the Bible, November through January

In this exploration, critically acclaimed author and professor Timothy Beal takes us back to early Christianity to ask how a box of handwritten scrolls became the Bible, and forward to see how the multibillion-dollar business that brought us Biblezines and Manga Bibles is selling down the Bible’s sacred capital. Showing how a single official text was created from the proliferation of different scripts, Beal traces its path as it became embraced as the word of God and Book of books.

Ahead, the class will explore:

• DVD series The Call by Adam Hamilton - 6 weeks, about the Apostle Paul

• DVD series Moses by Adam Hamilton - 6 weeks

• Books between the testaments, Books that didn’t make the Bible, and the Gospel of Judas - 5 weeks, from The Thoughtful Christian

• Efird Comprehensive Overview of the Bible - The Prophets (4 lessons) and Wisdom Literature (2 lessons)

Young Families Class (Room 102):

A class focused on parents with young children, September through December

This ever-changing, fresh, relationship-oriented class focuses on being Christian young families. Potential topics include helping your child to pray, the latest denominational statement on racism, and everything in between. Many in this class help teach Sunday school and otherwise serve the church, so come as often as you can but know that it’s okay to come and go.

Leaders: Tia and Tom Van Scoyoc

New Classes for 2017-2018

Faith TODAY (Room 100): All Year

This class responds to the need for flexibility in attendance and topic. The class will be different each week. (Occasionally, the same resource may be used with a different focus.) This allows drop-in attendance and permits regular learners to engage with a variety of current subjects. Imbedded will be topics of special interest to prospective or new members, and those who want to revisit learning about particular Presbyterian perspectives and practices or about Cary Presbyterian Church. Individual sessions will be publicized regularly.

Faith TODAY initial subject and leader line-up through Thanksgiving:

Sept 10: Sports: The Altars Where We Worship; Hunter Piermont

Subtitled, The Religious Significance of Popular Culture, this study proposes that intensity of religious devotion is not limited to churches, etc, but flourishes in various spheres of our cultural life. This Sunday we’ll look at the altar of sports, in time for football season!

Sept 17: Half Truths: God Won’t Give You More Than You Can Handle; Jerry Slaymaker

Simple but seemingly profound, many phrases abound that sound like something you’d find in the Bible - but aren’t. The study compares a common Christian saying with the wisdom in Scripture.

Sept 24: More Than Enough: Living Abundantly in a Culture of Excess; Sheri Mitten

This session, and those to follow later, meets us where many are - physically comfortable with our lives and conveniences but spiritually less comfortable with our privilege - and gives us a way to think about the good life in Christian terms so we don’t have to live in painful paradox.

Oct 1: Mindfulness I; Jason Troiano

Mindfulness meditation helps reduce stress, anxiety, and promotes well-being. Jason here offers the first of three sessions throughout the year.

Oct 8: More Than You Know: all about CPP; Leader: TBA

This class will help people become familiar with the many different ministries that we have at CPC, from Food, Friends, Fun to the older adult ministry, to workshop rotation, to Christian Adventurers, to the chancel guild, and so on, plus providing a chance to know the staff a bit better.

Oct 15 : What We Believe; Emmie Brown

Presbyterian theology has some significant things to offer the world but we often feel a challenge understanding or articulating even the basics. This session will remind us of the core principles of our Reformed tradition’s thinking.

Oct 22 : Behind Pulpit and Pew; Pastors

Worship wars have occurred in some churches; the piece of furniture in the chancel (what?) is called a communion table, not an altar, why do we have litanies instead of more silent prayers, who picks the hymns-all this and more as we discuss why we worship, and why this way.

Oct 29 : The 500th Anniversary of the Reformation; Special Emphasis; led by Confirmation Class!

The confirmands will have studied much about our Reformed tradition and where it originated. Come and enjoy their presentation and interaction with you.

Nov 5: The Ayes Have It: Polity; Jerry Slaymaker

Session, General Assembly white papers, Presbytery meetings here and there, planning, calling pastors are all part of how we’re organized. It matters.

Nov 12: “Shout” A Prophetic Piece on Racism; Rev. Deky Hall

The opening words of Isaiah 58 lay the groundwork for this look at hearing prophetic voices today, exploring responses to provocative questions after hearing the perspectives of artists and creative thinkers.

Nov 19: Alternative Gift Market

The suggestion is to meet together, discuss the purpose of the AGM, and then visit it.

Nov 26: No classes; recess

Connections Class(es): (Fellowship Hall, other customized spaces)

New this year, several Connection Classes may be formed as participation warrants. Created in response to those who desire to have a more relationship-based learning experience.

Connection Classes are similar to Connection Groups currently in existence.

Here are the characteristics of Connection Classes (the format is an adaptation of a Share, Word, Care model):

• meet weekly, so classes will meet each Sunday morning

• are self-formed, numbering no less than 5 persons but not more than 10

• use a simple format of:

—checking in with one another, which may include sharing things from one’s daily life, concerns about issues in the world, and so forth

—discussing a reading, whether from the Bible, or from an agreed upon book, video, film, or article which helps further faith in some way. Examples will be available at Rally Day. Participants obtain the books together or individually, similar to a book club group (though this is not the same)

— praying together, for one another, and for others

Connections are most successful when similar life-stages and gender meet together, but there is not a hard and fast rule about this. Please fill out the Connections Class interest form found in the narthex or contact Director of Christian Education, Medora Hix, by telephone (919-819-5360 cell) or by email, medora.hix@carypresbyterian.org.

These new opportunities for Adult Faith Formation Sunday School have an experimental quality to them. We hope you will try something new on for size, but we also wish to acknowledge the great ministry of our continuing classes, which always accept and encourage new participation. Many blessings to all as we go through this new program year.