Davidson College Presbyterian Church
December 27, January 3 No Class Meetings
Schedule of Classes for 2009-2010
January 10, 17, 24, 31
September 6 A Declaration of Faith
Rally Day for adults and youth Doug Oldenburg, President Emeritus, Columbia Theological Seminary, and Former
Moderator, Presbyterian Church (USA), will explore “A Declaration of Faith,” written by
September 13, 20, 27
a committee of the PCUS (Southern Presbyterian Church) in the late ‘70’s and adopted “. . .
Messianic Hope in Judaism and Christianity
as a contemporary statement of faith, a reliable aid for Christian study, liturgy, and
Max Polley, J. W. Cannon Professor Emeritus of Religion, will lead this comparison of
inspiration.” Many of us regret that it was never adopted by the reunited Presbyterian
Jewish and Christian interpretations of the Biblical references to the messiah in the history
Church (PC(USA)) for inclusion in the Book of Confessions. Portions of it are frequently
of the two faiths, with special attention given to the modern era.
used as a statement of faith in DCPC’s worship services. We will study selected chapters.
October 4, 11, 18, 25
Wisdom and Compassion, Scholars and Saints February 7
Hun Lye, Assistant Professor of Religion, will lead this series on the core teachings of DCPC Annual Meeting
Buddhism by examining Buddhist constructions and expressions of the ideal of “wisdom and
compassion” as the “two wings of enlightenment.” We will read a sampling of hagiographies February 14, 21, 28
and writings of historical Buddhist saints and scholars, paying special attention to the St. Paul’s Epistle to the Galatians
tensions and dynamisms manifested in the depictions and arguments of the role of Greg Snyder, Associate Professor of Religion, will teach a class on St. Paul’s Epistle to
rigorous analysis and debate on the one hand and non-discursive, anti-intellectual, mystical the Galatians. Paul has always provoked his readers, in some cases provoking them to
experiences on the other. passionate acceptance of his message, in others, stirring up enraged opponents ready
to stone him and leave him for dead. In Galatians, we encounter one of his most influential
November 1 letters and certainly his most polemical one.
Mission program for all adult classes in the Congregation House
March 7, 14, 21, 28; April 4, 11
November 8 Reynolds Price
Book review: Jesus Through Middle Eastern Eyes, by Kenneth Bailey Tony Abbott, Charles A. Dana Professor Emeritus of English, will teach this series on
The Rev. Tom Norwood will lead a review of this book by Kenneth Bailey. North American Reynolds Price, one of North Carolina’s most admired and best-known novelists, who has
Christians naturally read the Bible through North American eyes, but 21st century America also devoted considerable time to the study of the Christian religion. We will look at Price’s
is far removed from 1st century Palestine. How do we bridge the cultural and hermeneutical autobiographical books, Clear Pictures and A Whole New Life, for statements of his faith
chasm between the biblical world and our own? How do we avoid the “cultural captivity” of and descriptions of his spirituality. Then we will look at his studies of the Gospels and of the
the Good News? The author of this book has lived and taught New Testament in the Middle ethics of Jesus, especially in Three Gospels and A Serious Way of Wondering, and finally at
East for most of his life and uses his extensive knowledge of that world to deepen our his very beautiful short novel, Tongues of Angels.
understanding of Jesus in his own cultural context.
April 18, 25; May 2, 9
November 15, 22, 29; December 6, 13, 20 Mormons: History, Theology, Culture
The Apostles’ Creed Today Anne Wills, Associate Professor of Religion, will lead this class in considering this
Doug Ottati, Craig Family Distinguished Professor of Religion and Ethics, will teach a indigenous American religion, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, whose
series on the history of the Creed’s composition and the meaning of each sentence, as well members are perhaps better known as Saints or Mormons. We will examine Mormon
as classical and more recent interpretations of the Creed’s major affirmations. What does it historical origins, beliefs, theological and political controversies, and the rich Mormon
mean to affirm the Apostles’ Creed today? We will compare the ancient Creed with other cultural heritage. We will also look at some non-Mormon portrayals of Mormons and the
church statements, including the Brief Statement of Faith adopted by the Presbyterian LDS Church.
Church (USA) in 1990.