Contexts and intelligences shape 2019-2020 adult learning

News | September 5, 2019

Growing in faith happens in many ways all through the life of the congregation. Singing, service, chat, baking, prayer, visiting, reading, worship, and more – so many things contribute to our growth in faith. Sunday adult learning brings new horizons into focus in many ways, as well.

Christian life functions in a half-dozen contexts, each of which offers its own horizons to explore.

■ The context of the Bible gives us a shared language and story of our identity as people of faith.
■ The context of the Church is the Christian community in which our faith is at home.
■ The Community context frames our calling as servants and witnesses of God’s word for the world.
■ Relationships form the context in which faith is embodied, as our human connections mirror and instruct us about our relationship with God – our faith.
■ Each individual is an integrated Self, the called and gifted child of God who lives, body, mind, and spirit, in the faith relationship.
■ The context of Theology draws on modes of Christian expression, often in the Lutheran key, to understand faith.

Each of these offers exciting possibilities for learning. As each one grows and shifts in its character and in our understanding, and as we move through the journey of life, the horizons change and we find new vistas and windows and filters through which we engage them. Adult learning at St. Paul aims to provide avenues toward each of these horizons over time.

For some time, the learning community has known of “multiple intelligences,” originally sketched as seven by Howard Gardner and later expanded to nine by him and others. Not all are conducive to the setting of Sunday adult learning, but the program aims to meet adults in these various dimensions of learning, using more than the linguistic, interpersonal, and existential perspectives to open learning to the widest possible range of interested people. Adult learning is for those whose learning style is:

■ Linguistic, or word smart
■ Logical-mathematical, or number/reasoning smart
■ Spatial, or picture smart
■ Bodily-kinesthetic, or body smart
■ Musical, or music smart
■ Interpersonal, or people smart
■ Intrapersonal, or self smart
■ Naturalist, or nature smart
■ Existential, or deep questions smart.

With three venues each Sunday – the Chapel, Luther Loft, and the Sunday Bible class in Room 208 – and a range of contexts and dimensions to explore, Adult Learning at St. Paul strives to open up paths for faith growth for every individual person in the community. Come explore the horizons!

– Pastor Peter A. Pettit, teaching pastor

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