Learning for Life For Laity and Clergy
Classes on five Mondays and Tuesdays
April 17 – May 23

1 Celtic Spirituality: Reviving “Anam Cara” in Life and Creation

Mondays 1:00 – 3:00

A fresh understanding and history of Celtic Christianity and spirituality. Reviving the “soul friend” (Anam Cara) of  Celtic  wisdom  and how Celtic spirituality can renew the modern day church in peoples’ lives and creation. Required text: John Philip Newell, Listening for the Heartbeat of God: A Celtic Spirituality; (New York: Paulist Press), 1997 ISBN: 0-8091-3759-3

Rev. Dr. Raymond Moreland is a retired Elder of the United Methodist Church. Former Adjunct Professor – Frederick Community College; Executive Director Emeritus – Maryland Bible Society; B.A – Randolph-Macon College; M.Div. and D.Min. – Wesley Theological Seminary;

M.A. – St. Mary’s Seminary and University; and Ph.D. – Graduate Theological Foundation.

2 The Evolution of the Symphony

Mondays 1:00 – 3:00

The symphonic form has evolved over the last 300 years, yet remains a viable genre through which composers can express what is in their hearts and minds. Please join musician David Howard in exploring, through words and musical excerpts, this remarkable evolution, from the symphonies of Joseph Haydn to those of Dmitri Shostakovitch.

David Howard, cellist, was a member of the National Symphony Orchestra for 41 years. He holds two Masters Degrees, in Performance and in Education. In 2012 he retired to Frederick, where he maintains a teaching studio in his home and performs with the Frederick Symphony.

3 The First Christian Centuries: Apostolic Origins to the Fall of Rome and the Quest of Alopen

Mondays 7:00 – 9:00

From its beginning as an obscure cult in a backwater Roman province, Christianity  grew and thrived against a diverse set of cultural and religious backgrounds, amid a typically hostile political environment. How did this happen? We will examine pivotal events, trace the development of customs and beliefs and  pause  to  see  what the church’s detractors and  opponents  made of it all. And always look for relevant links to the role of faith and the faithful in our world. Required text: Christianity at the Crossroads; Michael Kruger (IVP Academic, 2018).

Dr. Charles L. Harrell is Director of Pastoral Care at the Asbury Solomons retirement community in Southern Maryland, and an adjunct faculty member at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington,

D.C. He earned his Ph.D. in Religion from Duke University with a concentration in early Christianity, with minors also in Theology and Art History.

4   Christian Nationalism

Mondays 7:00 – 9:00

Christian Nationalism is hailed by some Christians as the fulfillment of God’s purpose for America and by others as its greatest threat, while many haven’t heard of it at all or wonder what it really is. This class will examine Christian Nationalism from an historical and a biblical perspective to help the student understand and evaluate the movement.

Larry Eubanks has just retired after 27 years as pastor of First Baptist Church of Frederick. He earned a B.S., a M.Div. and a Ph.D. in Old Testament Literature. He blogs on biblical interpretation (, is a contributor at EthicsDaily. org and and is author of The Essence of Jesus: A Fresh Look at the Beatitudes.

5 Climate & Environmental Justice – Creation Care

Tuesdays 1:00 – 3:00

Katharine Hayhoe, author of the required  text, has said, “Climate change connects to the things we all care about: the health of our families, the economic strength of our communities, and the stability of our world. Fixing it isn’t only good for the planet; it’s good for all of us…To care about climate change, you only need to be one thing, and that’s a person living on planet Earth who wants a better future.” The class will explore different faith traditions’ beliefs about creation care, the systemic problems, intersections with other issues, and what science says can be done. Required text: Katharine Hayhoe; Saving Us.

Sherie Koob is a United Methodist Certified Lay Minister and a Global Ministries EarthKeeper, She has a B.S. from North Carolina State University. Mike Koob is a founding member of the Multi-faith Alliance of Climate Stewards of Frederick County, a certified Climate Justice Study Leader, and a Global Ministries EarthKeeper. He has a B.S. from Loyola University of Chicago and an M.B.A. from Averett College.

6   101: Basic Tenets of Jewish Mysticism

Tuesdays 1:00 – 3:00

The once tightly guarded secret system of Kabbalah, or Jewish Mysticism, has attained much attention in our modern era. Its wisdom has been sought both by Jews looking to their own tradition to deepen their connection with the Divine, as well as countless other spiritual seekers. Together we will explore the basic concepts of Kabbalah and discover how its concepts can help us along our own spiritual journeys.

Jordan Hersh is the rabbi of Beth Sholom Congregation. He also serves as a chaplain in the Maryland Army National Guard. He holds an M.A. in Bible and Ancient Near Eastern Languages from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America.

7 Speech from the “Whirlwind”

Tuesdays 7:00 – 9:00

Many value Job as an exemplary model of humble faith who endures immense personal suffering as a test. Recent trauma studies, in biblical scholarship of scriptures composed during the Babylonian Period (587-515 BCE), suggest another dimension to this book. It is in this context that we will examine YHWH’s speech, from the “whirlwind” and other parts of the book, as supporting collective post- traumatic recovery when the first waves of exiles returned to their homeland from Babylon.

John Lafferty is a social worker and independent Biblical scholar. He holds a B.A. in Religious Studies, an M.A. in drama, and an M.S.W. He began his study of the Book of Job in the context of trauma as a graduate student at the Ecumenical Institute in Baltimore.

8   Islam? Your Questions

Tuesdays 7:00 – 9:00

Have questions about Islam? Perhaps you have wondered about Islamic practices in life and death. What about the Hajj or Ramadan and fasting? Perhaps the role of Sharia in our country where there is separation of church and state? Other questions? Our neighbors from the Islamic Society of Frederick will be here to discuss and answer your questions.

Sayed Haque, a local physician and past Frederick News Post contributor, has gathered members of the Islamic community to present on the various subjects.