RETURNING SPRING 2012
BETA-Disciple at Home
A preliminary course in discipleship that can be studied with a life group in your own home.
Each winter for the past two years St. Michael’s staff have offered this follow-up course to ALPHA, our introductory course in Christian faith and life.
BETA-Disciple follows the same format as ALPHA except now in your home: an informal supper, a talk on DVD, a Study Guide for Life Groups to follow, and some outside reading.
Some of the topics include: Prayer, the authority and interpretation of the Bible, the cost of discipleship, the uniqueness of Jesus Christ, spiritual warfare, and life in the Spirit.
Beta-Disciple . . . the next step!
Now, on to Beta-Disciple!
Beta-Disciple will take place from the end of January through April. Beta involves DVD teaching sessions and Life Groups usually held in someone’s home.
If you have a regular, weekly Life Group, you are encouraged to take Beta together!
If you do NOT have a regular, weekly Life Group, fear not—new, Beta Life Groups will be formed specifically for you.
What is included with the Beta-Disciple Course?
You will receive two books, a brand new Study Guide developed for 2012.
Topics to be explored:
• The key to experiencing God on a continuous basis.
• How to be fully committed (without necessarily becoming a missionary in Africa).
• Guidance: how does it work, and how doesn’t it?
• Building a solid doctrinal foundation under your faith.
• Interpreting Scripture: Developing a Christ-centered view of Scripture.
• Spiritual warfare: Is it for the crazies, or something I need to know about?
• My gifts and yours – why appreciating them is so important.
• How spirituality can be a useful term, and how it is often misused.
• Developing a Christian worldview in a postmodern age.
• Which of the spiritual disciplines do I need to think seriously about?
• What happens if I fall – and fall badly?
• If I hate to sing, can I still learn to enjoy worship?
• What it means to be a sacramental Christian, and what it doesn’t.
OK, I’ve moved from being a “cultural Christian” to being a real believer. What next?
Studies have shown that many Christians eager to grow in their faith simply don’t know where to turn. After taking the initial steps, we want to be sure that our next steps are both biblical and draw on the rich history of Anglican and evangelical spirituality that is our heritage here at St. Michael’s.
To grow as a Christian one needs to send out deep roots that tap into the experience of believers through the ages, and we need to grapple with the challenges of living for Christ in a world that is increasingly secular and unsupportive. In short we need to learn to walk the walk, as well as talk the talk.
Regular worship, participation in a life group, Alpha and many other vehicles are here to get us started. But where does the journey in discipleship lead us, and what joys and sorrows will it help us cope with?
St. Michael’s wants to help you take those next steps, and send out those deeper roots. Therefore we are embarking on a new vision that begins with participation in Beta. Building on the excellent work of Alpha, but different in form and substance from it, Beta will involve us in study, prayer, spiritual disciplines, interaction and mutual support so that we are not left wondering:
Peter Moore, will take us on a journey that promises to change lives.
A word to you . . .
St. Michael’s believes that it’s absolutely critical that the entire congregation “sing from the same hymnal.” We believe Beta-Disciple will be fun, informative, and exciting. You may feel you have received instruction in some of these areas before; but this is a chance to review and renew, as well as assess how far you’ve come. As Dietrich Bonhoeffer said in his magisterial work, The Cost of Discipleship, “Only those who believe obey; and only those who obey believe.” By the end of this course you will see why that is one of the most profound statements he ever made.
If you have taken Beta once, take it again! Peter Moore has created a totally new Study Guide for all Life Groups. Also, new readings and tweaked Live Talks!
Contact Peter Moore with any questions. Fill out the form below to sign up.
Pick up your Beta CD, if you missed the lecture, and are registered for the course. All you have to do is drop by the Church office at 71 Broad Street, dash in to Gretchen’s desk, and ask for it. If you prefer, you may ask for a printed copy of the talk. Both will be available the day after the Beta presentation.
Reflections from Parishoners on Beta
Passion for BETA
What are your first thoughts when someone tells you they have a “passion” for something? A “passion” for food, music or staying up late watching movies. Well what about a “passion” to become more Christ like? I personally have not put much thought into it until now. The first session of BETA last Thursday not only provided good food and great company, it also provided a definition of what it is to be a disciple. “Christian disciples are people who have a ‘passion’ for growing in Christ-likeness while remaining fully aware of continued faults and sins that show their daily need for God’s grace.” When I read that definition in my BETA notebook, I could not help but focus on the word “passion.” My attention was immediately drawn to it, much like one is drawn to something one feels passionate about. When I looked up from my notebook and glanced around the room, I realized that the other BETA participants had the same devotion and desire as me. It was a rather energetic moment. I felt extremely moved and peaceful all at once to know I was not alone in my desire to further my developing relationship with Christ. This is my “passion,” to be a Christian disciple, to become more Christ-like amidst the faults and sins. BETA is the next step. ~ Brents Lee