Saturday, February 26, 2011

Getting serious about theology in Fayetteville

Canon, Creed, Confession

This class will begin in the fall of 2011 and will last 14 weeks, location and time yet to be determined based on availability of participants. The class will be team taught by myself and two members of our congregation.

The concept: to explore what it means to have a canon (Scripture), creed, and confessional texts. All Christian communities can benefit from continued conversation about how the Scripture functions as a holy text for the community, how the creeds (especially the Apostles and Nicene) function as a hermeneutical key for reading Scripture, and how, in the case of Lutherans, being confessional contributes further to being authentic in confessing precisely how we read Scripture in relation to the life of church, and life in general.

Our primary texts for the class will be:

Deep Exegesis: The Mystery of Reading Scripture, by Peter Leithart
Canon and Creed, by Robert Jenson
The Augsburg Confession (and perhaps other Book of Concord texts)
Harvesting the Fruits: Basic Aspects of Christian Faith in Ecumenical Dialogue, Walter Kasper
Comparative Theology: Deep Learning Across Religious Borders, Francis X. Clooney

The class will meet weekly for 90 minutes. Over the course of the semester, we will read all of the primary texts as the basis for our conversation and learning. For the Comparative Theology component at the end of the class. Gregory Walter, professor of theology from St. Olaf College, MN, will be a guest speaker as the capstone for the course. Finally, although we'll be studying the Lutheran confessional texts, this is a class open to the wider community, for example with our ecumenical partners or even in the community, so we will choose an off-site location to meet, and anyone interested in the development of canon, creed, and confession is invited to participate.

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