education at Woodside

Churches all have ways of passing the stories along. Some people call it Christian Education, some just say "Sunday school." At Woodside, we're calling it Faith Exploration, since it seems to be as much about questions as answers. Whatever you call it, we do it Sundays and other times, and we try to keep it fresh. Here's what's going on right now... (And if you want to know what we believe, you can find that here.)

for kids

Lessons for small children are during the worship service, 11 am each Sunday, during the school year, including age-appropriate lessons for pre-K - gr 2. Our kids in grades 3-6 prefer to come to worship. And our teens are still trying to figure out what they are up for. In the summer, we have childcare only, in the nursery, which is in the back of the sanctuary. Missy is delighted to welcome them with stories and activities.

for adults

During the school year, we have various classes and forums for adults Sundays at 9:30 -- and child care available during this time, as needed. Just tell us if this is a need, and we can make it happen.

Here's what we're doing right now:

  • Adult Book Forum. This is our current Sunday morning adult group. At the moment, they're reading Demolition Means Progress by Andrew Highsmith, all about the rise and fall of Flint. Previously, they’ve ready “The Cross and the Lynching Tree,” by James Cone; No Ashes in the Fire, a memoir of growing up black and gay in the innercity by Darnell Moore; “White Fragility,” by Robin DiAngelo; “How to Preach a Dangerous Sermon” by Frank Thomas, guaranteed to throw a wrench into family gatherings; and "Trouble the Water," a collection of essays on congregational response to racial injustice. That last one is a Baptist publication, and Pastor Deb wrote one of the chapters.

  • An Inquirers Class with Pastor Deb explores membership at Woodside. We do this in 4-5 week sessions, during the weeks before Easter and in Sept/Oct. If you're interested in this, call or email to join the list and get notifications.

Here's a bit of what we've done in the recent past: 

  • Bible Study Group – considers the same lessons we read that day in worship. Or something special, like Pastor Deb's class called 'God Hates Fags' and Other Ways We Screw Up Scripture. Which she may offer again. Inquirers' Class also includes a session on how we approach the bible.

  • Living our Faith in the World – has considered faith in light of social realities: water crisis, mass incarceration, whatever is in the news.

We've also had times when we stayed after worship to talk more about the sermon and the day's theme. We could imagine doing more of this! 

not on Sundays?

We have that, too. We frequently have book groups, which meet for 5-6 weeks at at time, usually at a local restaurant. Among other things, we've read "Pre-Post-Racial America: spiritual stories from the front lines" by Sandhya Jha; "Jesus: Uncovering the Life, Teachings and Relevance of a Religious Revolutionary" by Marcus Borg; and "Nickel and Dimed: On Not Getting By in America" by Barbara Ehrenreich. Have ideas? let us know!