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Small Group Opportunity

By September 19, 2023No Comments

New Small Group Opportunity with Lisa

Beloved St. John’s community, as I shared with you in my September 10 sermon, I’ve recently discovered a fresh way to approach the four gospels as addressing four universal questions about human transformation:

How do we face change? (Matthew)

How do we move through suffering? (Mark)

How do we receive joy? (John)

How do we mature in service? (Luke)

These questions and this approach are described in John Alexander Shaia’s book Heart and Mind: The Four-Gospel Journey for Radical Transformation. I have received permission from Dr. Shaia to pilot a series in which groups of people from St. John’s explore the four gospels in light of these questions, using curriculum that is being developed. We will use both wisdom from scripture and also from the earth / the natural world and our own lives to explore these four universal questions. This is because both scripture and nature are important sources of revelation about God. As Thomas Aquinas said, “Sacred writings are bound in two volumes—that of creation and that of Holy Scripture.”

Please email me before Friday, September 29 if you are interested in being part of the first small group that addresses the first question, “How do we face change?”

The groups will be conducted as follows: all sessions will be over zoom, are one hour long and will be held 1st and 3rd Wednesdays, either from 6:30 – 7:30am or from 7-8pm (timing will depend on the preference of the group).

Part One: Sessions 1-3: October 4, 18 & 29

This part of the series introduces the four questions, the four gospels and this approach to studying them. The third session will be during the adult forum on Sunday, October 29 at 9:30am, when Dr. Shaia will join us over zoom to have a live presentation and discussion.

Part Two, How do we face Change? Sessions 4-7 (scheduled November – December)

Session Four:      Introduction to Matthew’s gospel and the question “How do we Face Change?”

Session Five:       Exploring the teachings about change in two key stories from Matthew

Session Six:         Exploring how the natural world teaches us about change

Session Seven:   Sharing personal stories of change and how this wisdom can bring transformation


Parts 3-5 will be scheduled from January – June. You do not have to have participated in parts one or two to participate in upcoming groups.

I hope we will find this small group to be life-giving, fresh and deeply transformative. May the Holy Spirit guide and inspire us!

With love and anticipation,