Adult Education continues in the new year with a look at the second of the great commandments: to “love your neighbor as yourself.” In recognition of January 15 as Martin Luther King Day of Service and of February as Black History Month, we begin with a look at the role of the Black church in Philadelphia as an advocate for our African-American neighbors. This series will segue into the question of sanctuary and conclude with a presentation on current issues in the immigration debate.
January 7: “Who is Our Neighbor in Church?” Rev. Dr. Leonard Bethel, retired Professor Emeritus from Rutgers University and one of the key organizers of their Department of Africana Studies, will address "African Theology, Black Presbyterianism and the First African Presbyterian Church of Philadelphia." Don’t miss this opportunity to learn more about our neighbors in the Philadelphia Presbytery!
January 14: “Who is our Neighbor in Jail?” Did you know that Martin Luther King Jr went to jail 29 times, largely on trumped-up charges? That he entered Morehouse College at the age of 15? That he was ordained to the ministry before he graduated from college? Come learn more about this civil rights leader as we listen to excerpts from “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” in his own voice. We will use images and scripture readings to reflect upon the meaning of MLK Jr’s message in our day.
January 21: “Who is our Neighbor in Sanctuary?” The sanctuary movement has been much in the news of late, yet the intricacies of offering and receiving sanctuary are poorly understood. The Rev. Adan Mairena, community organizer and pastor of the West Kensington Ministry and the Yeadon Presbyterian Church will discuss sanctuary as a social justice issue. Adan is a board member of the New Sanctuary Movement in Philadelphia.
January 28: “Who is our Neighbor in the Philadelphia?” We anticipate hosting Lois Hayman-El, Training Specialist at the Philadelphia Corporation for Aging and member/historian of the First African Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia, and First African’s Clerk of Session, Marcia Singleton, for a lively presentation about the nation’s first African American Presbyterian Church. First African was established in 1807 by the Reverend John Gloucester, a former slave from Tennessee.
February 4: “Who is Our Neighbor in Wyncote?” Isaac Baah, currently a second-career student at Princeton Theological Seminary and inquirer under care of the Philadelphia Presbytery, will be with us to discuss his ministry with the United Ghanaian Community Church, a chartered congregation of the Philadelphia Presbytery. Learn more about this unique fellowship in our midst, “…ministering unto Christians of all denominations the Ghanaian way.”
February 11: “Who is Our Neighbor in Jenkintown?” The church office often handles requests from people needing assistance to take the bus to the US Center for Immigration Services in Philadelphia. To learn more about what is needed by those in need of such services, join us for a presentation by Bill Stock, one of the country’s leading immigration lawyers and a founding member of Klasko Immigration Law Partners, LLP. A local resident who has practiced immigration law exclusively for over twenty years, Bill will present a nuanced picture of the issues involved in immigration.