Adult Discussion Group


Enlightening dialogue

Join us for a lively, in-depth, single-topic, 70-minute discussion, typically featuring a knowledgeable authority. Share your views during the Q&A period. 8:30 AM every Sunday in the Assembly Hall.


Adult Discussion Group: Raising & Assisting People Working the Streets in Zimbabwe by Jerry Johnson & Tatende Choto

Date & Time: Sunday, July 23, 2017 - 8:30am

On July 23 Tatende Choto and Jerry Johnson, son of Pat and Deanne, will be returning to speak on “Raising and Assisting Children, Youth and Adults Living and Working the Streets in Zimbabwe.”  This will include new programs designed since their last visit  to ADG.  All ages are encouraged to attend this interesting and informative program.  We meet at 8:30 in the Assembly Hall.


July 16, 2017 ADG: "The Path From Jewish Biblical Texts to Jewish Codes of Law" by Cantor Beth Garden

Cantor Beth Garden from CTJ provides a brief overview of the process of writing the various portions of the Hebrew Bible. Then she discusses how these biblical writings were analyzed and debated by scholars before being made part of Jewish law.

July 9, 2017 ADG: "Homelessness - Is It Ever Solvable ?" by Becky Tan

Becky Tan discusses County Measure H, the homeless initiative funded by a 1/4 % sales tax that went into effect on July 1st.  Will this initiative be the answer to the ever growing homeless problem in L. A. County ?  Becky explains who is involved, with what resources, and she attempts to say what goals are realistic.

June 25, 2017 ADG: "The Historic Ordination of William Johnson" by Frank Hanzel

Frank explains how the UCC became the first major denomination to knowingly ordain a gay person into the Christian ministry.  Frank discusses the hardships that Rev. Johnson encountered and was able to overcome thru his faith and his resolve.  As a result, the doors of ordained ministry were opened to hundreds who have followed in his footsteps.

Adult Discussion Group: Historic Ordination of William Johnson

As we celebrate the anniversary of the UCC, you are invited to hear Frank Hanzel present how the United Church of Christ became the first major denomination to knowingly ordain a gay person to the Christian ministry. Learn how the faith and resolve of Bill Johnson opened the doors of ordained ministry to hundreds who have followed in his footsteps. Fireside Room, 8:30 am

ADG: "The Gospel of Mark - A Literary Perspective" by Marilyn Anderson

This is a literary analysis of the Gospel of Mark, not a religious or spiritual analysis.  Marilyn Anderson discusses how Homer’s two great epic poems, The Odyssey and The Illiad, written possibly 7 or 8 centuries earlier, appear to have set the standard for how epic stories (including Mark’s Gospel) were to be told.  Marilyn gives five specific strategies for these epic stories and shows how they were incorporated into the Gospel of Mark.

Adult Discussion Group: The Gospel of Mark - A Literary Perspective

On June 18, Marilyn Anderson will discuss “The Gospel of Mark –  A Literary Perspective”.  The Gospel of Mark’s author uses four narrative strategies to capture and hold the reader’s interest in this fast-paced story.  When we analyze Mark’s gospel as a literary work, we discover why these strategies are successful.  We begin at 8:30 AM in the Assembly Hall.  All ages are welcome.

ADG: "Providing Aid to the Developing World" by Jeff Stern


Jeff Stern spent 5 years in Ecuador and Nicaragua as a USAID employee overseeing a variety of aid programs.  Often this aid was in the form of matching the funding from private American donor groups.  Jeff gives us insights into how both our federal government and private donor groups provide aid to the developing world, and he discusses the effectiveness of various aid programs.

ADG: "Rev. Dietrich Bonhoeffer: Maintaining Jesus' Values in Hitler's Germany" by Dr. Lisa Dahill

(By mistake, the first four minutes of this presentation were not recorded.)
In this part 1 of a 2-part series, Dr. Dahill begins by describing Bonhoeffer’s childhood in a very large, religiously inactive, Prussian elitist family.  His gradual evolution into a Christian spiritual leader (including a year spent exploring religion in America) and his subsequent response to the moral dilemmas posed by the rise of Hitler are also explored.

ADG: "Islam - - A Comparative Religion Perspective" By Dr. Amir Hussain

This is the last of a 6-part comparative religion series – – specifically in 2016 Dr Hussain gave   presentations on Hinduism, Buddhism, Confusianism, and Taoism and in January 2017 he discussed  Judaism and Christianity.  Today Dr. Hussain discusses Islam and gives examples of how Islam adapted to local cultures as it spread out of Arabia soon after Mohammad’s death.  The inevitable result is that today within Islam there is a  wide diversity of religious practice, and Dr. Hussain gave sharia law as an example of this.

Adult Discussion Group: Islamd - A Comparative Religion Perspective

On April 30th our topic will be “Islam — A Comparative Religion Perspective” by LMU’s Prof. Amir Hussain.  This concludes a 3-part series on the major western religions begun by Dr. Hussain in January.  Dr. Hussain is a practicing Muslim and yet he is married to a Protestant (Methodist) and teaches at a Catholic University (Loyola Marymount).  He will make comparisons and contrasts among Islam, Judaism, and Christianity.  He will also focus on the aspects of Islam, from its beginning to the present day, that are most interesting and moving to him.


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