Study courses 2018

The Adult Education Committee is proud to sponsor St. Paul's 2018 Study Classes.

You may sign up for class only OR class + catered meal.

Dinner is served at 6:30 p.m.; classes begin at 7:00 p.m.

All class materials and books are included at no extra charge. 

Please see more detail in the class descriptions below!


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All classes are currently underway for the Fall Supper & Study Series.



  • The Lord's Prayer

    6 weeks, Tuesdays (September 11 - October 16), 7:00-8:30 p.m.  No class on Sept. 25 - alternative meeting date to be arranged.

    Cost of class: $12

    Cost of class with 6 catered dinners: $72


    When the disciples asked Jesus to teach them to pray, he gave them what we call "the Lord's Prayer." For many, this prayer has become both a standard part of worship and something so familiar that we hardly think about its meaning and message. Using a text by Douglas Connelly, we will reconsider and recontextualize the Lord's Prayer to dig deeper into Jesus' teachings and how we pray.


    Led by J. Perlow. Mr. Perlow has engaged in faith formation as a previous participant in Disciple I classes and was active as a Sunday School teacher. While this is his first foray into teaching in the Supper & Study series, he previously taught for ten years as an adjunct professor at American University.

  • The Synoptic Gospels

    6 weeks, Tuesdays (September 11 - October 16), 7:00-8:30 p.m.

    Cost of class: $12

    Cost of class with 6 catered dinners: $72


    The first three gospels are so similar in content and organization that they are called the Synoptic Gospels. Synoptic means “seeing together” and these gospels present the ministry of Jesus using similar (and at times almost identical) stories. We will examine what the similarities and differences in the gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke can tell us about the authors and the messages they are trying to convey.


    Led by Robert Nordstrom. Dr. Bob Nordstrom is branch Chief, Image Guided Interventions, Cancer Imaging Program at the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health. A student of The Bible for many years, Bob taught a number of short-term studies at St. Paul’s, including the Gospel of Mark, The Revelation to John, The Sermon on the Mount and the Sermon on the Plain, Jesus: From Prophecy to Praise. 



  • Invitation to the New Testament

    6 weeks, Tuesdays (September 11 - October 16), 7:00-8:30 p.m. 

    Cost of class: $12

    Cost of class with 6 catered dinners: $72


    Explore the writings of the New Testament using the story of Jesus as the starting point. This survey looks at how the early church took ownership of and was shaped by the story of Jesus, and how the church learned to create disciples and communities of faith. This study from the creators of the Disciple series, with text by Emerson Powery and David de Silva, is accessible for adults with little prior Bible experience.


    Led by Mark Huff.  Mark is a lifelong United Methodist and a member of the St. Paul's Adult Education Committee. He previously led short term studies about John Wesley, the Gospel of John, and the Journeys of St. Paul. He and his wife Sheela live in Olney and have been attending St. Paul’s UMC for over 6 years.

  • Making Sense of the Bible

    6 weeks, Tuesdays (September 11 - October 16), 7:00-8:30 p.m.


    Cost of class: $12

    Cost of class with 6 catered dinners: $72

    Using an accessible text by Adam Hamilton, this class will address some common foundational questions about the Bible, including how and when the Bible was written and who decided which books made it into the Scriptures. Then we’ll move to questions about the Bible that stir debate today. (Why is God so violent in the Old Testament? Why would Paul insist women "keep silent in the church?” How does God view homosexual people? Is Jesus the only way to salvation?) By considering these themes and more, we will gain a deeper appreciation of the Bible so we might better hear God speak to us through it.


    Led by Mike McCurry. Mike has been Lay Leader at St Paul’s and is active in our denomination as a former delegate to the UMC General Conference and member of the UMC Commission on Communications (UMCom). He worked for 25 years on Capitol Hill and as the White House as press secretary to President Bill Clinton. He now teaches at Wesley Theological Seminary where he also directs the Seminary’s Center for Public Theology.

  • Disciple IIA: Into the Word, Into the WOrld

    16 weeks, Tuesdays beginning October 2. 7:00-9:00 p.m.

    Cost of class: $20

    Cost of class plus 3 catered dinners Oct. 2-16: $50


    We will be offering the full Disciple II program in two parts. “Disciple: Into the Word, Into the World” draws upon the work of scholars, personal Bible study, and dynamic group discussion to deepen our understanding of the Bible. This year’s 16-week class offering will offer a deep dive into Genesis and Exodus. (Next year's session, Disciple IIB, will focus on Luke and Acts.)


    Co-led by Vern Schinski and Meg Baker.  Vern Schinski is a retired Navy Captain and medical school VP who led mission and outreach programs for two decades. He has been involved leading small groups and Disciple classes for many years. Meg Baker is a long-time member of St. Paul's who has served the church in a variety of capacities, including her current role as Director of Christian Education. You can read more about Meg at our Meet the Staff page.