Adult Spiritual Development - ACTS Ministry

Adult Spiritual Development - ACTS Ministry


FEBRUARY 19, 2018

Monday Night Book Study Session #5

We have reached the half way point of our book study for this winter. Last night we targeted the second of three sections of our book - that being "Siblings." Chapter 6 focussed on the Half-Brothers, Esau and Jacob, and Chapter 7 tied in nicely with Rev. Peggy's sermon on Sunday. Jacob's night in the wilderness as he prepared to meet his brother Esau after 22 years is a story well worth remembering. 

Sheryl opened with an overview of Chapters 6 and 7, then shared a book with us, "I am a Story," which echoed the theme of the Lenten season. Joan included some of her favourite quotes from Chapters 6 and 7 in her closing. As usual, break time was full of great food and even greater conversation. See you next week. 

FEBRUARY 12, 2018

Monday Night Book Study Session #4

Tonight we tackled the last two chapters of "Bad Faith" - one of three of the sections in Rabbi Sacks' book, "Not in my Name." Pat N. in his opening focused on Chapter 5, Scapegoating, highlighting his own experience with that of the experiences cited by Sacks. Wayne emphasized that Sacks is writing from a point of view outside of our experience. Breaktime offered an opportunity to share singing and cake marking David Layton's 72nd birthday. I was committed to Book Study so couldn't entertain him with cake and song otherwise. Thanks for the indulgence of our group!!

Scapegoating and Sibling Rivalry brought with it lively discussion as we struggle to understand the complexities of living in our era. 

Karen M. provided a closing to our evening that gave a positive twist to Sibling Rivalry. As usual, the keynote for the evening is attached as a file attachment below for those of you who were unable to attend (and eat cake)!

FEBRUARY 5, 2018

Monday Night Book Study Session #3

What a loyal group of Monday Night Book Studiers we are! In spite of the cold, the chairs were filled and the discussion was lively. Colin opened with an overview of the readings for tonight - Violence and Identity (Chapter 2) and Dualism (Chapter 3). The closing tonight was borrowed from the Jonathan Sacks website entitled "Politics of Hope." 

Some of the group did not have enough time to read Chapter 3 so will have Chapters 3, 4 and 5 to read for February 12. This will conclude the first segment of our book which Sacks has labelled "Bad Faith." If you are following the study at home, just click on the presentation for Session #3 at the bottom of this page.

Next week, Pat will open and Sheryl will close. Happy reading to you.  

JANUARY 30, 2018

Monday Night Book Study Session #2  

Deb shared the opening with our own Mike Grammar who is the Torontonian member of our Book Study. Mike recommended the book we are currently studying and he has participated from afar in previous studies. We appreciate the depth of his contributions. Thank you, Deb. Closing was done by Karen McKeown who shared with us some quotes from Chapter one and concluded with "Universal Soldier," by First Aid Kit.

The Keynote for the evening can be viewed as a file attachment at the bottom of the page. We continued viewing the interview with Rabbi Jonathan Sacks addressing his book, "Not in God's Name."

THREE QUOTES selected by Karen

"The test of faith is whether I can make space for difference. Can I recognize God's image in someone who is not in my image, who's language, faith, ideals are different from mine? If I cannot, then I have made God in my image instead of allowing him to remake me in his."

"It is the space we create for one another that allows love to be like sunlight to a flower. The role of love, both human and Divine, is in the lovely phrase of Irish poet, John O'Donahue, "to bless the space between us." 

"Wars are won by weapons, but it take ideas to win at peace." 

JANUARY 24, 2018

Monday Night Book Study Session #1

There are 34 registrations and over 40 books sold in connection to our Monday Night Book Study this winter. On Monday night, we had over thirty people in attendance and there was an air of excitement as we attempted to work our way through an understanding of violence as it presents itself in today's world. Deb will open next week and, if by chance, you come across a reading, short video or just a major epiphany during the week, you will be more than welcome to close for session #2. Remember, your reading is chapter #1 "Altruistic Evil." Check the File attachment at the bottom of the page for Session #1. NOTE: The entire youtube, featuring Rabbi Sacks in discussion regarding his book, is attached. We watched only the first 8 minutes of the video and will continue to view it during upcoming sessions, a few minutes at a time. 

JANUARY 13, 2018

Monday Night Book Study and Thursday Morning Bible Study  are about to start their winter sessions with Bible Study starting next Thursday morning, Jan. 18, at which the members in attendance will choose their focus for the session. Monday Night Book Study will start on Jan. 22. There are a few book left with 30 registrations for this, our 50th book study. Here is a copy of Wayne's message to the Forum:                     

Forum Friends:

This is a reminder that our Monday Night Study on the theme "Not in God's Name -
Religion and Violence" begins Monday, January 22nd - ten days from now.

We ordered a total of 40 books, and six copies remain for sale in the church lobby 
this Sunday. So far, 30 people have registered. We always have room for more!
If you want a book held for you, it will be on a first come, first served basis.

Thursday Morning Bible Study begins next week on January 18th when we decide
on the biblical book(s) we plan to study this winter. Newcomers are always welcome.

Our St. David's Lenten Retreat at Mount St. Francis, Cochrane will take place on
Sunday, March 4th - 11:30 AM to 4:00 PM. The theme, led by retreat leader Susan
Campbell is: "Encountering a Sacred Intimacy With God." 

Mark your calendars for these events! I will keep you posted.


HEARTS AND HANDS travellers to Guatemala in March are reminded of a meeting at St. David's Tuesday, January 16, 2018, at 7 p.m.

DECEMBER 26, 2017


ACTS has been very active during the month of December, first with their Christmas Book Sale and then with the promotion of the Monday Night Book Study which begin in late January. Our Spiritual Education Director, Wayne Holst, has sent out the following message to St. David's Forum.

             Forum Friends:

            ACTS Ministry at St. David's is pleased to announce our Monday Night
            Winter Study selection for 2018. It is our 50th book under consideration.
            The title "Not in God's Name: Confronting Religious Violence" was suggested
            last summer by Mike Grammer of Toronto, an e-partner for many years with
            our Forum Friends studies. Please read the description below to get an idea of the subject.
            Also, check out "My Thoughts" on the book. Click on the file attachment below. 
           Since Jock cannot be with us, Brenda Wallace has agreed to take his place
           for most Mondays, and we thank her for that. We will miss Jock.

           We begin selling registrations and books this Sunday, December 17th in the 
           church lobby; and have a good supply, but anticipate they will sell out quickly.
           ACTS continues to keep the total study cost at $60 or $20 for the book only - 
           and that is a bargain when you consider that hospitality is included.
           Here is a title you can start into during the holidays, but sales will continue
           January 7th, 14th and 21st before classes begin.
          Join us for ten Mondays (January 22nd to April 3rd  7-9 PM in the TM Room)
          with Family Weekend serving as a mid-course break-nite.

          See you there!


DECEMBER 4, 2017

Our Christmas Book Sale has offered an opportunity for selecting the right gift for special folks on our list. The books will be available at church next Sunday.