Four Sessions Exploring a Variety of Ways
In Which “God is Being Reborn”
In this four-week course, the Reverend Al Gephart will invite participants to respond to the ways that John Philip Newell perceives concepts of God in the Christian community undergoing a seismic shift, reorientation, and rebirth.
Attend the Live Class Sessions
or Work At Your Own Pace
Do you find yourself thinking about God in new ways? Or perhaps you’ve given up on God because traditional perspectives no longer satisfy? Some see a “rebirthing of God” taking place around the world. We will share reflections based on a book by that title, written by Celtic scholar John Philip Newell, former warden of the Iona Abbey in the Western Isles of Scotland.
Newell observes rebirth happening in a variety of ways through messengers like Thomas Berry, Mary Oliver, Bede Griffiths, Thomas Merton, Simon Weil and Carl Jung. “There is a desperate yearning among us for new beginnings.”
Such yearning is seen in a reconnecting to the earth, a reclaiming of compassion, a recommitment to the shared journey of many faith traditions, a rediscovery of spiritual practices, a rededication to nonviolence, a reuniting with love. We are invited to notice these fresh stirrings of the Spirit. Newell's prayers express our connection with the sacred in all people, and with the whole creation.
“The walls of Western Christianity are collapsing. In many parts of the West that collapse can only be described as seismic. . . . There are three main responses or reactions to this collapse. . . . The third, which I invite us into, is to ask what is trying to be born that requires a radical reorientation of our vision. What is the new thing that is trying to emerge from deep within us and from deep within the collective soul of Christianity?”
-John Philip Newell
About the Professor
The Rev. Al Gephart is a retired ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church, USA. He also chairs the Interfaith Dialogue Committee, which is a part of the Arizona Faith Network. Al, his wife Betsy Wells-Gephart, and their dog Tulla live in Tempe, Arizona.
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