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Continuing Education classes are open to all Lay School of Ministry participants who have completed their first two years of basic studies.

Each year the Lay School Board chooses a theme and invites instructors from around the country to cover our topics. We seek out instructors from our ELCA seminaries and colleges, as well as experts at public and private universities, colleges and other institutes.


2016-17 LSM Cont Ed Faculty/Topics
The Book of Acts

2016
Sept 9/10 Sarah Henrich/Luther Seminary

Session One
                  "Restore the kingdom to Israel?" (Acts 1:6): What were they thinking?
We began where Jesus and his followers began, in a world understood through a Jewish imagination about God, God's word, God's promises, and human hopes.  Every aspect of Jesus' life and ministry was deeply rooted in Jewish thought and life.  What did Jews believe at the turn of the millennium?  How did Jesus challenge those beliefs, if he did?  What did that mean for community?

Oct 7/8 Sarah Henrich/Luther Seminary

Session Two
                  "The Gentiles who turn to God" (15:19):Who were these folks and what did they bring to their new communities?
                  Gentiles were everyone who was not Jewish.  The ancient Mediterranean world was predominantly Gentile--filled with varieties of beliefs, languages, customs, ethnic groups....you name it.  Most of the Mediterranean world was part of the Roman Empire which tolerated variety pretty well as long as taxes were paid and the peace kept.  What did it mean in the midst of all this variety to proclaim another king, a savior other than the emperor, and the worship of one God?   Perhaps we will find some clues for faithful living in our own pluralistic world.


Nov 11/12 David Fredrickson/Luther Seminary

The Two Pauls: The Book of Acts Versus the Letters of Paul

Over my years of reading the Book of Acts I have been fascinated with the way it tells the story of Paul in ways that he himself would neither have recognized nor approved. Paul is the major (human) player in Acts. He is there at the stoning of Stephen in chapter 7, and the last words of Acts 28 describe his stay in Rome. But this beginning and this ending and all that happens between fails to show up in the genuine letters of Paul.  So what are we to make of the two Pauls, and which one can enliven the church of the 21st century?

Session one deals with the two ways Paul’s conversion was depicted (2 Corinthians 12; Acts 9; 22; 26).

Dec 9/10 David Fredrickson/Luther Seminary
Session two deals with the meaning of religion (1 Corinthians 1-2 and Acts 17)

2017
Jan 13/14 David Fredrickson/Luther Seminary
Session three examines attitudes toward the religion of others (1 Corinthians 8; Acts 14:8-18).

Feb 10/11 David Fredrickson/Luther Seminary
Session four looks at gender (Philippians 3-4 and Acts 16:11-15).

Mar 10/11 David Fredrickson/Luther Seminary
Session five treats Judaism (Romans 9-11; Acts 13-15).



April 7/8 Ray Picket/Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you” (Acts 1:8): How is the Spirit at Work in the World Today?


Acts tells the story of the continuation of Jesus’ ministry through his followers who have been filled and empowered by the Spirit. Acts has sometimes been called the gospel of the Spirit because it features transformational experiences prompted by the Spirit. In this session we will explore various interpretations of the work of the Spirit in Acts from a variety of cultural and theological perspectives.

May 12/13 Ray Picket/Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago

“These people who have been turning the world upside down” (Acts 17:6): How do we Witness to the Resurrection of Jesus?

The story Acts begins with a small band of Jesus’ followers in Jerusalem who are impelled by the Spirit to bear witness to the resurrection of Jesus throughout the Roman Empire. As the movement spreads, Jesus’ Jewish followers find themselves encountering people of different ethnicities and engaging cultural differences in ways that transform both the movement and those it embraced. In this session we will explore what Acts has to say about bearing witness to the resurrection of Jesus in creative ways that allow us to be transformed by others even as we share the good news.



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