Adult Classes

Adult Ed webAt Central, we believe that Christian education is a lifelong journey. In addition to gathering for worship, adults are encouraged to participate in classes on Sunday mornings.



Classes are offered every Sunday at 9:45 a.m. with a variety of topics from Bible study, to current issues, to theological questions. Ongoing adult classes with rotating leadership provide learning and fellowship opportunities. 

Special studies are also offered throughout the year.  Each January Central's adult classes meet together for Winter Studies and during the summer months for Summer Series to focus on a specific topic.

Adult Classes--All Spring 2014

February 2 - May 18

Spring Learning 2014 (75 x 74)Christianity from the Reformation to the Present
Christianity: The First Three Thousand Years by Diarmaid MacCulloch, Professor of the History of the Church at Oxford University

Class members will alternate leadership in discussing each chapter of the text.

Join us to seek to understand our history as children of an ongoing Reformation project.

The First Spring Term will take the story from the Reformation to the Enlightenment, while the Second Spring Term will examine the flourishing of Protestant missionary Christianity along with the secularization of Europe and the contemporary culture wars of religion and a-religion.

Class Location:  Oglesby Bldg., Room G-1
Convenor:  John Huss


Spring Learning 2014 (75 x 74)Central Letters

Sunday mornings, look for “a klatch” of coffee drinking, socializing, brother and sister loving folks in Tull Hall. We will share common concerns, take time for meditation and prayer, and put pen to paper to correspond in joy and love with those in celebration or need. Led by Brian Bishop and the Deacons, letter and note writing is the focus; ministry is the result.

Convener:  Brian Bishop

Adult Classes--Early Spring Quarter

February 2 - March 16

Spring Learning 2014 (75 x 74)Ordinary Time: Finding Wonder in the Everyday

An Altar in the World by Barbara Brown Taylor

Looking for God? For Meaning? For More? Stop looking up and start looking around.

We will read and discuss Barbara Brown Taylor’s, An Altar in the World, learning to pay attention to our world, to blur the line between secular and sacred, and to find divine wonder in our actual lives.

Leader:  Sharon Damelio, Central Outreach and Advocacy Special Projects Coordinator and CPC Member
Convenor:  Jean Ellen Jones
Location:  Taylor Conerence Room (off Tull Fellowship Hall)


Spring Learning 2014 (75 x 74)Being a Faith-Full Christian in an Interfaith World
The question is not “how to have interfaith dialogue or why,” but rather dealing with questions that arise from certain “exclusionary” scripture passages.

We will be looking between the Christian understanding that the Bible says Jesus is the only way to God and salvation and others who read the Bible and hear it saying God loves everyone absolutely and that God is bigger than we know or understand.

Leader: Katie Givens Kime, Ph.D. student and former Associate Pastor at Trinity Presbyterian Church
Convenor:  Ed Carwile
Location:   Brotherhood Room (off Tull Fellowship Hall)

February 2 - March 2

Spring Learning 2014 (75 x 74)Why Christian Education?
Dialogue on raising children in faith, answering their questions, and Christian education in the home.

Various leaders, including class members, will lead discussion about the meaning of Christian education for children and their families. Participants will observe Godly Play curriculum in action, explore the role of Christian education and church in each family’s culture, discuss ways to talk with and involve children in the worship experience, and talk about ways to develop practices of education at home through family devotion, sharing, and storytelling.

Convener:  Melanie Bliss
Location:  The Parlor (off Tull Fellowship Hall)


March 9 - April 6

A View of Lent from John’s Gospel

This class will engage many of the great stories only told in John’s Gospel, from the Samaritan woman at the well to the raising of Lazarus to the extended confrontation between Jesus and Pilate. No prior Bible knowledge is necessary. Come learn at the feet of one of the most engaging and sometimes, maddening, of the four Gospel writers.

Leader:  Gary Charles, CPC Pastor
Convener:  Ed Carwile
Location:  Brotherhood Room (off Tull Fellowship Hall)


Lenten Mindfulness Meditation

In preparation for Easter and in honor of the Lenten season, various leaders will offer guided meditation exercises. We will join together in peace and reflection.

Convener:  Melanie Bliss
Location:  The Parlor (off Tull Fellowship Hall)


Tuesdays, March 11 - April 15
7:30 – 9:00 p.m. | The Harrington Center Library at Columbia Theological Seminary
Spiritual Practices and the Gospel of John      

Leader: Marilyn McKelvey Tucker, Senior M.Div. Student at Columbia Theological Seminary and CPC Chancel Choir member

Marilyn will be leading a study on Tuesday evenings from 7:30-9:00 p.m. which will, through the Gospel of John, explore different spiritual practices within daily life, particularly in times of transition and change. This study is open to all. Coffee, tea dessert and light snacks will be provided. We hope that those who participate will covenant to read the Gospel of John outside of our time together over the course of Lent and attempt the spiritual practices we explore each week. For more information, contact Marilyn Tucker at 334-202-2004 or

Adult Classes--Late Spring Quarter

March 23 - May 18

Spring Learning 2014 (75 x 74)Experiencing short fiction through a Christian lens
The Vintage Book of Contemporary American Short Stories (1994) Edited by Tobias Wolff

How does our perspective as Christians influence the way we understand fiction?

We will read and discuss seven works of short fiction from an acclaimed compilation edited by Tobias Wolff, seeking to discern if and how elements of Christian faith are involved.

Leader:  Chris Sciarrone
Convener:  Jean Ellen Jones
Location:  Taylor Conference Room (off Tull Fellowship Hall)


April 27 - May 18

Spring Learning 2014 (75 x 74)What the Bible Really Says About Family
Hear what the Bible really says about family.

Rodger Nishioka (April 27) and Beth Johnson (May 4, 11, and 18) will share their theological expertise, quick wit, and humor as they offer insight into scriptural references to family, including homosexuality and marriage. 

Leaders: Rodger Nishioka, Benton Family Associate Professor of Christian Education at Columbia Theological Seminary and CPC Affiliate Member, and Beth Johnson, J. Davison Philips Professor of New Testament and CPC Affiliate Member
Convener:  Melanie Bliss
Location:  The Parlor (off Tull Fellowship Hall)

Spring Learning 2014 (75 x 74)What is Religion?
The class will participate in examining theological reflections on religion, religious diversity, and what religion has to do with following Jesus.

During this 4-week series, we will explore the development of the concept of “religion” and how Christians through the ages have interpreted themselves in a world of religious diversity. Areas of focus will include: the development of categories of “world religions,” inclusivism and pluralism, and Barth’s critique of religion.

Leader: Martha Moore-Keish, Associate Professor of Theology, Columbia Theological Seminary
Convener:  Ed Carwile
Location:  Brotherhood Room (off Tull Fellowship Hall)