Lenten Study (Online): Forgiveness

We invite you to join us for a 6 weeks Lenten study this year in 2021, as our two lay servants Lorna Wade and Marvin Wilbur will lead the group discussion.

“Christians differ widely in their interpretations of how forgiveness should be practiced. Some urge forgiveness as a Christian duty under all circumstances, while others argue that certain conditions must be met before forgiveness can be meaningful or effective. How do we sort through such competing claims and interpretations? And how do we get past some of our emotional barriers to real forgiveness? These are the kinds of the questions we will explore together in this study of a theme particularly well-suited to the season of Lent, but fit for any season of our lives.” (Thompson)

Feb 21 Session One: The goal of this session is to welcome participants and encourage them to begin reflecting on forgiveness in relation to human community. Parables and folk tales are used to illustrate challenges faced by the need to forgive–and to be forgiven.

Feb 28 Session Two: This session addresses awareness, acknowledgment, and confession as the foundation for seeking and receiving forgiveness. Self-examination allows us to look more objectively at our urge to judge others.

Marc 7 Session Three: In this session we’ll learn to identify some of our external and internal enemies and begin to move toward loving them. When we begin to see ourselves standing with those who have fallen into the seduction of sin, it casts a whole new light on what it means to pray for our enemies.

March 14 Session Four: The goals of this session are to identify at least one thing for which we need forgiveness and to seek both God’s forgiveness and that of any person(s) affected by our offense. We’ll consider how to reconcile divine judgment with divine love as we explore the deeper spirit of repentance, one of the key practices of Lent.

March 21 Session Five: The sense in most New Testament teachings is that forgiving others is imperative–not optional. What if we can’t forgive? Or we’re simply not ready to forgive? This session uses touching stories of forgiveness to illuminate these challenging themes.

March 28 Session Six: Many people believe that forgiveness is not possible without repentance, and that to offer forgiveness before repentance is a travesty of just, accountable relationships. But what of Jesus’ willingness to forgive on the cross? Can we reverse the conventional relationship between repentance and forgiveness?

Time: Sunday 9:00 am to 9:50 am (starting on February 21)

Send an email to revbobjon@gmail.com or text 508-685-6291 to receive the Zoom link.

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