Bethany Renew
Midweek Email Devotion
 12 May 2016   

I welcome you to Bethany Renew! This is our church's weekly online spiritual connection.
Every midweek, you will receive a devotion, a prayer, or an essay that are intended to stir up conversations and ideas of how we will proceed on the path of renewal. Feel free to forward this email to anyone who you think will be interested in receiving these readings.  You are welcome to respond or make com ments, or otherwise just sit back and enjoy your weekly readings and reflections!  

It's been a tradition in many churches to wear red on Pentecost. You are welcome to wear red this Sunday in celebration of Pentecost Sunday (May 15).

Do you have a hymn that you want to sing during worship? Please email me back. I want to hear from you. We go by the lectionary, so I will find a Sunday where your hymn will fit the text's topic. Thanks!

10:30 A.M.
Pls share it! Spread the word.

MAY 15
After-Mother's Day
Cake Auction
Don't forget to bake! If it looks like a cake, bring it! We'll auction it!

May 10-20
Oregon Convention Center
Join me in praying for the delegates, bishops, clergy, laity, congregations, and small groups across the denomination into a spiritual preparation for the 2016 General Conference. 
For more information in praying for the GC, click here.

Here is another group study from the author who brought us our Revival and Advent Study, Adam Hamilton. This is study invites us to look at crucial topics in our society in the light of scriptures:
Are scriptures and science contradictory?
How about evolution?
How in the world the Bible got written?
How does God view homosexual people?
How should we see suffering and violence in the bible and in our world?
In my own reflections of the debates and conversations that are presently taking place at our General Conference, I feel a need for believes and churches like us, to step back, study the scriptures in a respectful, learning small-group environment.
But I must warn you, whether you are coming from progressive or a conservative background, our faith will be challenged by this study. This will will be a good challenge though, one that will lead to a stronger faith-community, and spiritual growth.
Since I was a kid, I've been reading the bible, loving it, advocating for it, and for the last 20 years, been preaching about it. I love the scriptures. However, the social issues and tensions we currently faced made my faith to be more open, expanded, while at the same time more grounded. This book has helped me in that process of finding a balance. 
Many mainline denominations right now (Methodists, Presbyterians, Lutherans, Anglican churches) are going through a similar process of dealing with similar question and topics like: bible's inerrancy vs. inspiration; violence in the scriptures; homosexuality; the bible and scientific findings; climate change, etc.
The goal of this study is not to convert anyone to shift from conservatism to progressive thinking; or from liberalism to conservative beliefs. The goal is to create a safe place of conversation, where questions can be asked, where disagreements are respected, and where our common faith in Jesus Christ will be further affirmed.
DATES: June 10, 17, July 1, 8, 15, 22. (June 24 is skipped because of Annual Conference)
For now, Friday is the best day for me to lead a study. However, I am willing to adjust, if this will not work out for many. Let me hear from you.

If interested, please sign up by replying to this email, or signing up in the signup sheet in the next 3 Sundays. Deadline: May 29.
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MONDAYS 9:30-11:30 a.m.

Pastor Ferdie Llenado
Bethany United Methodist Church
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