On November 7, 2012, we began the first of five weekly live sessions of an online class to assist all pastors with their Advent sermon preparation titled, "Advent: Preaching Texts from the Hebrew Bible and Gospels." This course is taught by Dr. Rick Lowery. Ph.D. with additional commentary and discussion by Linda McCrae, Senior Pastor of Central Christian Church of Indianapolis.
After the second of our five scheduled live conference calls, we are still registering new students for the class everyday!
Currently, as this page is being written, one-third of the total students in this course registered AFTER the start of the class and more are coming in daily! This is a significant percentage and we have taken note of it.
The shear number of registrations and the broad geographic distribution of students indicate this course is filling a broad need. The large number of late registrations also indicate this class still has a significant appeal even after the class has started.
From today, right now, and for the remainder of the Advent season, anyone who registers late for this course AND uses the Scholarship Code (shown below), will receive a $30 discount off the price of the course for the remaining session.
The Scholarship Code is "COLLEAGUE"
All the registrant has to do to receive this discount is to enter the Scholarship Code into the indicated spot on the online order form. At checkout, the $79.99 price of the course will be discounted $30.00 to be $49.99.
This partial scholarship is available to any new student. It will be honored throughout the remainder of the Advent season from any new late-arriving student who uses this code in late registration.
Just because a person registers late for this class doesn't mean that they can't easily catch up with the remainder of the course and receive a great deal of value from its content.
First, all five of the video-on-demand sessions will always be available for viewing. These alone will be of value to those entering the class for the first time.
Second, all of the past live conference calls are recorded and available for review to catch up on the past sessions.
Third, the Class Forum is always available for catching up with questions on past video-on-demand or live conference call sessions. It is never to late for new questions and discussions of earlier sessions.
Just among the clergy that I speak with regularly, I have heard from several pastors that they are just now beginning their sermon preparation for Advent; others tell me that they haven't yet begun.
Therefore, it isn't too late to begin this course and receive its value.
Even for those who might have just started their preparation, this course can provide a jump-start to a meaningful series of sermons during the Advent season.
This course takes an in-depth look at this year's lectionary texts for Advent from the Hebrew Bible and asks how they relate to the gospel texts from Luke. Lectures provide an overview of the historical context of the biblical passages and some of the cultural and economic influences that shaped them. Conversations explore sermon ideas and how the biblical texts relate to the weekly themes of advent. Rick Lowery provides social-historical, literary, and theological commentary and talks with experienced Indianapolis pastor Linda McCrae about how these texts speak to the church as it engages its mission of justice, healing, and reconciliation today.
Whether new to the task of preaching – in which you immerse yourself in the Scripture, the historical context, the commentaries, and your own experience – as you prepare to “Proclaim the Gospel” -- or seasoned in the preparation and delivery of sermons, you will not want to miss the latest course offered by Christian College of Georgia.
It is time to prepare for the Advent Season: “The liturgical season of Advent celebrates Christ’s vision of the Kingdom of God erupting in our very midst. It prepares us and calls us to recognize the signs of God’s in-breaking reign of justice and peace in this broken and confused world.” (Dr. Rick Lowery, Professor for this Distance Education Class).
If that summary alone does not sufficiently capture your curiosity, your commitment to lead, and your compassion for God’s creation and creatures, then take a look at what this course will provide as you prepare for the preaching opportunities of Advent this year.
The course consists of five 40-minute video-on-demand sessions and five one-hour live interactive sessions with one of Disciples’ best and brightest, Dr. Rick Lowery, will provide the essential background information for the homilist to immerse herself in the realities of the Biblical world, gaining new awareness of the vicissitudes of life in the Roman world. Your mind will wind its way through the conspicuous comparisons to the Twenty-first Century, and you will not escape the almost instantaneous illustrations which confront you as you “soak” in the sights and sounds and symbols of your daily life – truly the crucible of preparation for proclamation.
Rick Lowery provides social-historical, literary, and theological commentary.
Talks with experienced Indianapolis pastor Linda McCrae about how these texts speak to the church as it engages its mission of justice, healing, and reconciliation today.
You will embark on a journey through the lectionary which will point you to each of the Sundays of the Advent Season. Not surprisingly, you will find yourself making notes you may never bring to your sermon manuscript or outline. But your own spiritual journey will be enriched, nevertheless, and you will be ready to stand and deliver on December 2, 9, 16, and 23, with confidence and enthusiasm.
If you are new to the discipline of homiletics, you will soon see that this course – whether taken for Advent or as a way of developing the standard competencies for ministry as your prepare your portfolio for your Commission on Ministry or to have a trusted guide as you prepare for your first Advent preaching series – is precisely what you need for exposure to the process of spiritual and intellectual preparation for the liturgical year.
If you are not new to the privilege (or the task) of preaching, you will find that there is no substitute for fresh insights from a Disciples Scholar who will assist you in grounding yourself in the best practices for preparation to proclaim the prophetic texts for Advent. Take the course alone, or share it with your colleagues in your Advent discussion groups. Your life and ministry will be enriched by the experience.
Click here to register.
Click here for the course brochure.
Click here for the course flyer.
Click here to see the course details.
Click here to see the course syllabus.
Click here to see Rick Lowery's bio.
Click here to see Linda McCrae's bio.
Click here to see the anticipated course outcomes.