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Christianity and Culture Program

One hour presentations on a broad range of topics by a broad range of presenters from the church and the community related to Christianity and Culture.  Check this space for forum topics, presenters, and recorded programs. Sundays at 9:15 a.m. unless otherwise stated. Full program descriptions sent out weekly in Parish News.

Current Programs:

March 3rd: Part 3 of the El Camino de Santiago presentation

Last summer, Ramona and Chip Bouzard walked the pilgrimage trail called El Camino de Santiago from St. Jean Pied de Port, France, to Santiago de Compostela in northwestern Spain. Their journey took forty-four days and covered over five hundred miles. They will be sharing stories and photographs of their journey as "peregrinos" (pilgrims) on the Way to Santiago.


March 10th: "Why was Jesus silent when He was interrogated during his Passion?"

The words of Jesus draw us to the Christian faith, but He chooses to be almost completely silent when interrogated by the high priests, Pilate and Herod. We will explore how ordinary medieval Christians---laborers, parish priests, and tradesmen--understood His silence as a spiritual resource through the short biblical plays they scripted and acted. 

Edwin D. Craun

March 17th: Lifting Feminist Voices in Liturgy, Lectionary, and Life


Dr. Susan Virginia Mead will lead an exploration of resources she has found to bring a broader perspective to spiritual study and worship.  She will share poetry from Amanda Gorman, showcase examples from the Feminist Bible and Inclusive Language Lectionaries, and highlight inspirations such as The Rev. Dr. Pauli Murray. Susan says "Our time together will encourage us to listen for voices we may not have heard before, to work together to ensure that every voice is lifted, and to channel the voice of the divine for greater good beyond ourselves."


March 24th:  There will be Coffee Hour but No C & C - Join the Community Palm Sunday Parade at Hopkins Green at 9:30.


March 31st:  Easter - There will be Coffee Hour and Flowering of the Cross out front.

Past 2024 Programs: January 7: Intergenerational Service on the Epiphany.  We will be focusing on the Bible story and its different interpretations, making stars and decorating some crowns, and we will enjoy some delicious Three Kings' Cake made by our very own Mary Wilson. January 14:  Tuck will be providing an overview of Renewal Works, a research based church-wide program that focuses on spiritual growth. January 21:  Tim Gaylard will present on the well known oratorio ,The Messiah,by George Frideric Handel.  Tim will share information about the story of this amazing piece of music, its religious and musical significance, and its famous composer. January 28:  Unitive Service - no Christianity and Culture. February 4th:  Open meeting for members to hear Neal Roseberry, our architect from FGMA, present the proposed plan for Parish House.  Since the initial meeting last February, Neal, his firm, the Strategic Planning Committee, and Tuck have been working on this proposal. We hope folks will attend this very important and informational meeting.  This session will be "Zoomed" and recorded for those who can't attend the meeting. February 11th: “Music in Interfaith Conversation,” will feature discussion between Fr. Tuck and visiting composer and interfaith leader, Gerald Cohen. Cohen holds a BA in music from Yale University and a DMA in composition from Columbia University. He is cantor at Shaarei Tikvah, Scarsdale, N.Y., and is on the faculties of the Jewish Theological Seminary and Hebrew Union College in New York, N.Y. Cohen’s interfaith stance is central to his thought and work in a time of worldwide crisis and trauma. Cohen will participate in the 10:30am service; lead a session at 5pm at Grace on Niggunim (Jewish mystical song); deliver a public lecture at W&L; and be the featured composer of the Chamber Music Society of Lexington’s concert Monday, Feb. 12 at Grace Episcopal.  Feb. 18th & 25th: & May 12th  On February 18 Cecile West-Settle and Heidi Schweizer will offer the first of three sessions on the Camino de Santiago or as it is known in English the Way of St. James. Since the 8th century pilgrims have crossed from France into Spain, descending the Pyrenees, then turning west and traveling 500 miles to reach Santiago de Compostela, the site of St. James’ alleged tomb. In the first session we will examine the nature of pilgrimage and focus on the scripture, ecclesiastical tradition, and folklore contributing to the multiple identities associated with the St. James of the Camino. In the second, we will discuss how to prepare for walking the Way (itinerary the necessary equipment, etc.). In the third session several “pilgrims” of our community will share their personal experiences of walking The Way of St. James.

2023 Programs: January 22: Building Use Plan January 29: Diocesan Convention - Parochial Report Discussion February 5: What happened at Diocesan Convention - presentation by our Delegates February 12: 9:15AM Eucharist followed by 10:30AM Town Hall with Neal Roseberry February 19: Last Epiphany Intro to Lent Madness Wednesday, February 22: Ash Wednesday Sunday, February 26: 1 Renewal of Faith, Confirmation –Dwelling in the Word Mt 4:1-11  Wednesday, March 1: 6PM Prayer 6:20 Supper 6:45PM Lent Madness Sunday, March 5: 2 Lent Renewal of Faith/Confirmation Wednesday, March 8: 2nd 6PM Prayer 6:20 Supper 6:45PM Lent Madness March 12: 3 Lent Renewal of Faith/Confirmation – Dwelling in the Word John 4:5-26 March 15: 3rd Wednesday 6PM Prayer 6:20 Supper 6:45PM Lent Madness Saintly 16 March 19: 4 Lent Renewal of Faith/Confirmation Dwelling inthe Word 15 minutes, John 9:1-12 Wednesday, March 22: 6PM Prayer 6:20 Supper 6:45PM Lent Madness Elate 8 March 26: 5 Lent Renewal of Faith/Confirmation Dwellingin the Word John 11:17-37 Wednesday, March 29: 6PM Prayer 6:20 Supper 6:45PM Lent Madness – Final 4  April 2: Palm Sunday Why Jesus? April 9: Easter April 16: 2 Why Jesus? April 23: 3 Easter Why Jesus? May 7: Becoming Beloved Community Repairing the Breach June 4: Trinitarian symbology at Grace June 11: No C&C 9:30am Unitive Worship followed by 11am Town Hall Meeting with Neal Roseberry - Response to Building Use Proposals June 18: Introduction to Spiritual Formation - Introduction to six Christian spiritual Traditions - ways to live like Jesus: Sacramental, Contemplative, Evangelical, Holiness, Compassion/Justice, Charismatic.  Starting July 9 we will look more closely at one tradition each Sunday and suggest some practices to experiment with during the week. June 25: No C&C Prepare for 10:30 am Eucharist at Jordan's Point. July 2: Retired professor of history Holt Merchant will offer reflections on the Federalist papers focused on paper #10 July 9: Charismatic Tradition.  Jesus relied on the power of the Holy Spirit.  The Charismatic Tradition opens us to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit which transforms us from within. Led by Jerry Nay July 16: Evangelical Tradition. Jesus studied the Scripture, Jesus is the Word, Jesus proclaimed the Word. The Evangelical Tradition directs us toward knowledge of God through the Word of God. Led by Anne Hansen July 23: Justice/Compassion Tradition. Jesus served the marginalized and oppressed. The Justice Tradition directs us to acts of direct service, advocacy and the dismantling of unjust systems. Led by Susan Mead July 30:  Renewal Works. Setting a course for Congregational Spiritual Growth. August 6: Sacramental & Holiness Tradition. The Sacramental Tradition directs us to live as members of Christ’s Body - Our hands are his hands, our vocation is affirm the goodness of human life and the entire material world. The Holiness tradition protects us from ways of life that lead to death and despair and guides us into ways of life that lead to true freedom and joy. Led by Madelyn Stuart and Drew Sorber. August 13: Contemplative Tradition - Jesus Prayed. The Contemplative Tradition is a response to God's longing that we spend time with God.  The goal of Contemplative Prayer is intimacy with God who is always with us. We will discuss several resources and exercises for practice during the week. Led by Heidi Schweizer and Alexandra Brown August 20: Jonathan Daniels. Today, in honor of 2023 Golden Halo Winner Jonathan Daniels we will reflect on his life and legacy. Led by Keith Gibson August 27: Marc Nikkel Day.  Today, in honor of Marc Nikkel and the people of Sudan we will reflect on the work of the American Friends of the Episcopal Church in Sudan. September 3: "All Good Gifts from South Sudan" Through a little music, art, and storytelling for ALL ages--and a quick 5-minute trip through South Sudan--we will explore the cultural richness and many gifts we receive from our spiritual neighbors across the globe. September 10: James Keane will be talking about Education for Ministry (EfM), one of the most meaningful spiritual growth programs at Grace. EfM teaches about history, content, and their impact on the spiritual journey of EfM participants. Please join us to find out more about this enriching and challenging program. September 17: Entering into and understanding the liturgical year of the Church can itself contribute to personal, spiritual growth. David Cox will explain the significance of this liturgical calendar during this session. September 24: This will be a double program. Speaking first will be Elise Sprunt Sheffield, from Boxerwood, who will share interesting information about COREworks, a grassroots effort that focuses on carbon emission-reducing projects. Elise will educate us on ways that we can work together to preserve the glorious world that God created for us and charged us to protect. The second part of the program is our own David Hansen, who will speak on the Legacy Society of Grace. What better way to express our spiritual commitment than to make a special gift to our church. October 1:  This will be our second intergenerational program and our members both young and old are invited to join us.  This is the Sunday where our rector blesses the animals (no snakes, please) both during and following the services.  You can bring your pets, your stuffed animals and pictures of beloved animals to be blessed.   Following coffee hour, a delightful book entitled, "Bible Birds and Beasties" will be read to the children.  We will be pulling together all the items members donated to the SPCA and prepare them for delivery. October 8:  What beloved book by a Rockbridge County native was recognized in 1970 as the "most distinguished contribution to American literature for children"?  How did an extraordinary local teacher of color inspire the story and another go on to share it with Lexington fourth graders, sending at least one on a life-long quest for social justice?  Come to the October 8th Christianity and Culture program at 9:15 to learn the answers and to imagine together how we might use lessons learned to build a Beloved Community --that is, "A Sounder Community." October 15: David Cox will share information that will help us understand the purpose and meaning of Evensong, which is a service traditionally held near sunset focused on singing psalms and other Biblical canticles. The Grace choir performs Evensong once a month at 5:00 p.m. on Sunday. October 22:  Sacred Ground is a film and readings based dialogue series on race, grounded in faith.  This 11-part series is built around a powerful online curriculum of documentary films and readings that focus on Indigenous, Black Latino, and Asian/Pacific American histories as they intersect with European American Historie.  Please join Tuck and some Sacred Ground graduates and learn more about this timely program.  October 29:  Now that our Grace pilgrims have recovered from their recent pilgrimage to Israel, we are excited to have them share their experiences and inspirational moments with us.  November 5th:  Intergenerational Session  "For All the Saints" During this session the lesson will focus on different saints, different levels of saints, and the calendar for the year. November 12th and November 19th: Anne Hansen will be speaking about HOPE. The world is full of alarm and sorrow. What is the nature of Christian hope? And how are Christians called to live this hope in a troubled world? November 26th: Rooted in Abundance December 17th: We will have our third intergenerational session. Each family, young and old, will be making their own Nativity set to take home for the holidays. Grandchildren will love these,  so grandparents are invited to come and make them.  Part of our time together will have us using our adorable Nativity sets for a mini-Christmas pageant. On December 31st, Joanne Robblee will be focusing on the "Symbols of the Season." She will share the history and the meaning of the beautiful Chrismon symbols on the tree in the Sanctuary; what the different kinds of halos signify; and what is the religious meaning behind the Twelve Days of Christmas.

Recordings of Previous Programs


Recognizing Bias with Tamara Futrell, Dean for Diversity, Inclusion, and Student Engagement at Washington & Lee University. 

Legacy Planning with Sally Hurme. What is the most important information you need to decide, document, and organize to ensure your life's plans and wishes are carried out? Sally Hurme, an Episcopalian and attorney, retired AARP executive, and bestselling author shares her experience and suggestions.

Recovering our Connection to God’s Joy in Creation (Part 1) led by Anne Hansen

"....when the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy" (Job 38:7). Is there a place for joy in our age of ecological anxiety? If so, how do we regain it? We'll consider creation through the accounts in Genesis and our own experience.

Recovering our Connection to God's Joy in Creation (Part 2)

Three Kings of Israel, with Doug Ayer

 Doug Ayer treats from a historical perspective three Kings of Israel who exemplify prominent aspects of the development of Israel's Monarchy. David transforms a Tribal Confederation into a Nation-State. Solomon expands David's State into a Regional Empire. Josiah, near the end of the Pre-Exilic Period, institutes a major if short-lived Political Reform which institutes elements of limited government parallel in some respects to features found in institutions in Ancient Greece during roughly the same period.



The Seven Last Words of Christ with Joanne Robblee


A three-part series of Reflections on The Seven Last Words of Christ from Jon Meacham's The Hope of Glory. The events of Good Friday and Easter reveal essential truths about Christianity. Beginning with “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do” we will discuss how these words epitomize Jesus’s message of love, not hate; grace, not rage; and, rather than vengeance, extraordinary mercy.


The Life and Doctrine of Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Our presenter, Brooklyne Oliveira is a senior in Religion and Philosophy at WLU. 

Part 1

Part 2

The Labyrinth with Joanne Robblee

The History of the Labyrinth, part 1

The Labyrinth of Grace, part 2

Walking the Labyrinth, part 3


The Windows and Brass of Grace with Marlys Craun

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