Faith Formation Videos

Adult Faith Formation
Loving Thyself and Neighbor” – led by Aliyah Kennedy

Aliyah Kennedy will lead a session focused on the importance of community and selfcare.

“Loving Thyself and Neighbors”

Adult Faith Formation
Answers to Job: Coping with An Imperfect World” – led by Dr. James Butler

“There was once a man in the land of Uz whose name was Job. He was blameless and upright, revered God, and turned from evil…” And yet, Job’s life came apart at the seams. Foreign raiders stole his animals and murdered his servants; his children died together in a windstorm; and then he came down with a nasty, chronic skin disease. Job lost everything except for his unsympathetic wife and three friends who said it was all his fault — he sinned, and God was punishing him. The ancient Hebrew story of Job deals with the question of why otherwise decent, good, God-fearing people suffer and experience loss. Many people ask the same question Job asked: “What did I do to deserve this?”

Beginning Sunday, January 7 at 11:20 a.m. and continuing for three more Sundays, LPC Pastor Jim Butler will explore how people of faith have coped with suffering, loss and disappointment.

Answers to Job: Coping with An Imperfect World” – Part 1
Answers to Job: Coping with An Imperfect World” – Part 2
Answers to Job: Coping with An Imperfect World” – Part 3
Answers to Job: Coping with An Imperfect World” – Part 4

Adult Faith Formation Guest Speaker
“Caregiving 101” – led by Rev. Robert J. Machovec

What does it mean to be a caregiver? Nearly one in five Americans provide unpaid care for someone 50 and older. Caring for a friend or loved one can be one of the greatest gifts one can give to another person; it can also be one of the greatest challenges. On Sunday, November 12 at 11:20 am, we will explore the joys and challenges of caregiving. What are the issues, challenges and stress points? What are emotional and spiritual issues? What are some strategies for coping in being a caregiver? The discussion will be led by Rev. Robert J. Machovec, a United Methodist minister, Pastoral Psychotherapist, and trainer for Stephen Ministry. He is the Minister of Pastoral Care at the United Methodist Church of Kent.

“Caregiving 101”

Adult Faith Formation Guest Speakers
Greater Cleveland Congregations

Greater Cleveland Congregations (GCC), with more than 30 member institutions, is dedicated to promoting issues of social justice to improve our community. Nathan Self and Khalilah Worley-Billy from GCC will be our guests for Adult Faith Formation on November 5. Their presentation will give us an opportunity to learn what GCC does to challenge policies, practices and systems that perpetuate racism and poverty.

Speakers from Greater Cleveland Congregations

Adult Faith Formation Guest Speaker
Cynthia Rios, Executive Director, The Haven Home

The Haven Home — an overflow shelter for women and children — opened in 2017, and currently serves over 240 families each year. When space becomes available in more permanent housing, the families transition out on their journey to sustainable independence. The Board of Directors has made a decision that Haven Home will pivot from a temporary shelter to a family maternity home with a transformational environment designed to restore and build healthy family relationships and prepare them for independence.

Haven’s Executive Director, Cynthia Rios, will be our guest on Sunday, October 29 at 11:20 a.m. during Adult Faith Formation. She will share Haven’s new mission and vision and how LPC can help it become a reality beyond simply providing financial support.

Cynthia Rios, Executive Director, The Haven Home

Adult Faith Formation Class
“Women in the Bible: Good, Bad and Fearsome”

Many of us are familiar with Sarah (aka Sarai) the wife of Abraham, and of course, Mary, the mother of Jesus, and perhaps Mary and Martha, the famous bickering sisters of Lazarus. But few of us know much of anything about the other women whose lives and activities were important enough to be recorded in scripture. Some were sneaky, cruel and murderous, but many more were good and faithful to God, to their loved ones, and to their communities. But all of them were human, played significant roles in God’s saving work, and they are part of our sacred library. On Sundays, October 1, 8, 15 and 22 at 11:20 a.m., LPC Pastor Jim Butler will present a four-part series introducing some of these less familiar but so very remarkable women.

“Women in the Bible” – Part 1
“Women in the Bible” – Part 2
“Women in the Bible” – Part 3
“Women in the Bible” – Part 4

Adult Faith Formation Class
The Church: ‘We’re Not in Kansas Anymore…’”

On Sunday, September 17 and 24, LPC Pastor Jim Butler will lead presentations on the evolving nature of the church as an institution. It began as small groups of Jesus’ mostly Jewish followers, centered in the Jerusalem Temple, who worshipped in local synagogues and also met for prayer, study and fellowship in homes. Three centuries later, the imperial church emerged, centered in Rome, which eventually fractured into three major categories — Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholic and thousands of Protestant traditions. North American Christians in all three categories are wondering, sometimes in fear and trembling, what is happening to the church/denomination/tradition to which I belong? What is next for my local church, our denomination and Christianity as a whole? Are we headed toward a majority atheistic or agnostic culture in which institutional religion passes away? Will only mega churches and evangelicals survive? Come and get a bigger perspective on these issues. Hear the wisdom of astute observers of these trends in North American churches and rekindle hope, not in sustaining ineffective institutions, but in resurrection of life in the Spirit within gathered communities.

“The Church” – Part 1
“The Church” – Part 2

Adult Faith Formation Class
In Touch with Titus”

Titus is not Paul’s shortest letter — flip the page in your New Testament to Philemon — yet in three short chapters, we will not only get in touch with Titus but with the challenges and hopes for our church and lives as well. Beginning Sunday, May 14, join Dr. Steve Gorman at 11:20 a.m. in Wright Chapel for a Bible study full of insights into the past and instructions for the present and future.

“In Touch with Titus” – Part 1
“In Touch with Titus” – Part 2
“In Touch with Titus” – Part 3

Adult Faith Formation Class
Mission Malawi Update

Karen Byrne returns to give an update on the Malawi Prison Well that she spoke about at LPC last September. The well for the largest prison in Malawi was completed in January. Karen will give updates on the blessings that your gifts have provided for these impoverished inmates and their community.

Mission Malawi Update

Adult Faith Formation Class
“Speakers from Project Noelle”

Project Noelle was founded by Kelli Clark to address the needs of the thousands of children who have suffered because of the opioid epidemic. On Sunday, April 23, Kelli Clark, along with the Cuyahoga County director, Sue Derov, will provide details about their work.

“Speakers from Project Noelle”

Adult Faith Formation Class
“And He Appeared…”

LPC Pastor Jim Butler leads a discussion on the nine stories in the four Gospels in which Jesus “appears” to his disciples followed by the major historic theories concerning the crucified physical body of the Lord.

“And He Appeared”

Tuesday Evening Lenten Series
“Mouthpieces of God: the Weird and Weighty Lives of Prophets”

LPC Pastor Jim Butler leads a four-part series looking at the very special (and sometimes very weird) ministries of the Hebrew prophets. The word prophet means “one who speaks for and interprets God’s will.” Learn more about the series here.

“The Weird and Weighty Lives of Prophets– Part 1
“The Weird and Weighty Lives of Prophets– Part 2
“The Weird and Weighty Lives of Prophets– Part 3
“The Weird and Weighty Lives of Prophets– Part 4

Adult Faith Formation Class
“Allies for Justice – Part II”

After her impactful November series on recognizing racial injustice in American culture, we welcome back Patricia Wellborn to lead a four-part Sunday morning series on how each of us can support and work for racial justice in our ordinary lives. The series begins at 11:20 a.m. on Sunday, March 5 and continues the following three Sundays. Patricia is a graduate of John Carroll University and the president of Lakewood Black Caucus.

** Link to homework assignments **

“Allies for Justice” – Part 2
“Allies for Justice” – Part 4

NOTE: Weeks 1 and 3 of the class are unavailable for viewing.

Adult Faith Formation Class
“Bible Basics for Non-Thumpers”

Do you really have to believe that every word and sentence in the entire Bible is the “word of God” in order to be a faithful Christian? LPC Pastor Jim Butler will explore these and other questions regarding scripture and its role and authority in a three-part series beginning Sunday, February 12 and continuing on February 19 and 26. Learn more about the series here.

“Bible Basics for Non-Thumpers” – Part 1
“Bible Basics for Non-Thumpers” – Part 2
“Bible Basics for Non-Thumpers” – Part 3

Adult Faith Formation Class
“I Was a Stranger, and You Took Me In…”

This three-part series beginning on January 8, 2023 will take a look at the “stranger in our midst.” Learn more about the series here.

“A Biblical Perspective on Immigrants/Refugees” – Part 1
“Christians Caring for Immigrants and Refugees” – Part 2
“Rebuilding Lives” – Part 3

Adult Faith Formation Class
A Back Stage Look at the Christmas Characters

Most everyone knows something about the main characters in the Christmas story — Mary, Joseph, and of course, the baby Jesus. On Sundays, December 4 and 11 at 11:15 a.m. in Wright Chapel, LPC Pastor Jim Butler will help us explore the lives and thoughts of the other figures sprinkled across the two Christmas stories in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke. Learn more about the series here.

A Back Stage Look at the Christmas Characters– Part 1
A Back Stage Look at the Christmas Characters– Part 2

Adult Faith Formation Class
Becoming an Ally for Justice

Patricia Wellborn, president of the Lakewood Black Caucus, will lead a four-part Sunday Faith Formation series on November 6, 13, 20 and 27. The series will help broaden our understanding of the complex challenges of racism in our culture, and how we can become allies with people of color in the struggle for equity and justice. Learn more about the series here.

“Becoming an Ally for Justice” – Part 1
“Becoming an Ally for Justice” – Part 2
“Becoming an Ally for Justice” – Part 3
“Becoming an Ally for Justice” – Part 4

Adult Faith Formation Class
Opening Our Hearts to Those in Need

As the weather turns cooler and long summer days turn to dark autumn evenings, let us turn our hearts and minds to those who may feel that chill a little more than others. In October, the Faith Formation Ministry invites you to learn how we can support those in poverty within our community. Four local organizations will share stories of faith and service to those who are most in need. Learn more about the speakers here.

Renee Brickman from The Metanoia Project
Anthony Baratta from The City Mission
Trish Rooney from Lakewood Community Services Center

Adult Faith Formation Class
When I Was Thirsty: A Matthew 25 Mission in Malawi

On September 25 our speaker was Karen Byrne, the Commissioned Pastor (C.P.) of Concord Presbyterian Church in Centerville, Ohio, a part of the Upper Ohio Valley Presbytery. This past summer she spent several weeks in Malawi visiting prisoners, local church groups, and seeing the well that she helped to fund in Domasi Prison.

“When I Was Thirsty: A Matthew 25 Mission in Malawi”

Adult Faith Formation Class
Becoming a Faith Community that Cares for Neighbors

As LPC adopts the Matthew 25 model for mission, Pastor Jim Butler leads a presentation and discussion about the possibilities for LPC to become more intentional about responding to the emotional and spiritual needs of our neighbors.

Becoming a Faith Community that Cares for Neighbors

Adult Faith Formation Class
What is a Matthew 25 Congregation?

This past January our church Session approved a plan to become a “Matthew 25” church. What does this mean? What are the implications? These questions will be explored during a four-part faith formation series following worship on May 1, 8, 15 and 22. The series will be led by our Matthew 25 exploratory task force — Brian Case, Cindy Dugan, Cinda Gorman, Jeff Ritter and Tedd Roos. (Please note: Sessions 1 and 2 are not available for online viewing.)

“What is a Matthew 25 Congregation?” – Part 3
“What is a Matthew 25 Congregation?” – Part 4

Adult Faith Formation Class
“What Happened?”

Dr. Jim Butler presents some of the common theories about the missing body of Jesus of Nazareth.

“The Resurrection in the Gospels”

Tuesday Evening Lenten Series
God’s Unifying Grace

Beginning Tuesday evening, March 8, LPC Pastor Jim Butler will lead a four-part series looking chiefly at the Christian doctrine of grace and its implications for racism and other issues that continue to divide the church. The series will also introduce the Belhar Confession to our LPC family. The 222nd (2016) General Assembly approved the adoption of the Belhar Confession, and it now joins eleven other historic Reformed confessional statements in the Presbyterian Book of Confessions.

The United Reformed Church of South Africa offered this confession to the world-wide Reformed family of churches following its long confrontation with racial disunity, injustice and Apartheid. The confession has five short sections that repudiate all manner of disunity and injustice with references to scripture and the Christian doctrine of grace. Each section is followed by clear “rejections of false doctrines” that accommodate racism and division in the church and culture. Dr. Butler will cover each of the five sections and provide time for questions and discussion.

The in-person and Zoom hybrid series will be held at 7 p.m. in the Reed Room. The series will continue March 15, 22 and 29.

“God’s Unifying Grace” – Part 1
“God’s Unifying Grace” – Part 2
“God’s Unifying Grace” – Part 3
“God’s Unifying Grace” – Part 4

Adult Faith Formation Class
Caring for Neighbors in Need”

As we begin our journey as a “Matthew 25 Church,” we will explore Jesus’ command to love our neighbors (Matthew 22:39) and to see him in people who are hungry, inadequately clothed and housed, imprisoned, and unwell in mind, body or spirit (Matthew 25). The four-part series will be held on Sundays, March 6, 13, 20 and 27 in Wright Chapel at 11:20 a.m.

The Rev. Dr. Cinda Gorman, a member of our Matthew 25 Taskforce, will begin on March 6 with a discussion of the biblical mandate to care for others. On March 13, Patty Napolitano, MSW, will speak on the growing problem of homelessness and how congregations can help. Our speaker on Sunday, March 20 will be Ken Harbaugh, a former US Navy Pilot and past president of Team Rubicon Global, a disaster relief organization that has helped retrain over 100,000 military veterans as emergency responders. He has served as a guest fellow at Yale University where he earned the JD degree, and written for The New York Times, The Atlantic, and Time Magazine. On March 27, Kathy Hartzell, an Elder at Rocky River Church and recent seminary graduate, will share her jail chaplaincy experience in Pittsburgh.

“Caring for Neighbors in Need” – Part 1
“Caring for Neighbors in Need” – Part 2
“Caring for Neighbors in Need” – Part 3
“Caring for Neighbors in Need” – Part 4

Adult Faith Formation Class
From Eros to Agape: Søren Kierkegaard’s The Work of Love” led by Aliyah Kennedy

What is love? It’s not all Valentines and chocolates. Love is indescribable, yet many philosophers and theologians have attempted to capture its essence. In his book Works of Love, Søren Kierkegaard, a Danish philosopher and father of existentialism, explores Agape, the Christian concept of unconditional love, Eros, preferential love, and phileo, love given to friends and family. Kierkegaard (1813-1855) is widely considered to be the first existentialist philosopher, but he was also a theologian, poet, social critic and religious author. His theological work often deals with Christian love. He compares and contrasts the infinite differences in the quality of mankind vs. that of God and the individual’s subjective relationship to Jesus through faith. Several biblical aspects of spiritual love are examined in relation to erotic love and friendship and moves from primal erotism to spiritual ecstasy. This study contemplates the unfathomable qualities of love, since “God is love.” The writing is also concerned with how love manifests itself in Christian life. Though he agrees with Luther that works do not earn us salvation, he proposes that works, grounded in love, are a necessary part of Christianity. Aliyah Kennedy will lead a study of these three types of love. Opportunity for discussion will take place in the chapel after worship on February 13, 20 and 27.

“From Eros to Agape” – Part 1
“From Eros to Agape” – Part 2
“From Eros to Agape” – Part 3

Adult Faith Formation Class
A Very Brief but Incredibly Interesting Look at Christian Worship” led by Rev. Dr. James Butler

LPC Pastor Jim Butler will lead a three-part series looking at public worship as a primary venue for forming faith that inspires action. The series begins on Sunday, December 5 with the story of the Magi who traveled a great distance bearing expensive gifts to worship the baby Jesus after they “observed his star in the east…” The series continues on Sunday, December 12 with a brief look at the origins of Christian worship as it emerged from Jewish synagogues. The series concludes on Sunday, December 19 with a fascinating look at the seemingly endless variety of Christian worship from Appalachian snake handlers, Pentecostals, the sacramentally focused traditions, to our own Reformed styles.

“An Interesting Look at Christian Worship” – Part 1
“An Interesting Look at Christian Worship” – Part 2
“An Interesting Look at Christian Worship” – Part 3

Adult Faith Formation Class
God’s Word/God’s Will” led by Rev. Dr. Steve Gorman

This year’s Faith and Action theme continues as LPC Parish Associate, the Rev. Dr. Steve Gorman, presents a four-part series, beginning November 7, that will help motivate participants to read the church’s ancient sacred library — The Bible — not just for intellectual curiosity, but to allow the scriptures to motivate us into actions of kindness and compassion, generosity and justice. We study the scriptures, but we must also allow them to speak and direct us into faithfully living — faith and action. The series will be both Bible study and discipleship study. Wherever you are on your journey, this series will challenge you to be “a good steward (manager) of God’s manifold grace” (I Peter 4:10). Adult Faith Formation convenes in Wright Chapel at 11:15 a.m. each Sunday. Come learn and then go forth to do! All are welcome.

God’s Word/God’s Will – Part 1
God’s Word/God’s Will – Part 2
God’s Word/God’s Will – Part 3
God’s Word/God’s Will – Part 4

Adult Faith Formation Class
How to Love All as God’s Beloved Children” led by Dr. Sheryl Buckley

Our 2021 Faith Formation theme of “Faith and Action” continues with a four-part series led by Dr. Sheryl Buckley focused on how we can actively demonstrate the love of Christ to everyone, even those who might consider us an enemy. See No Stranger: A Memoir and Manifesto of Revolutionary Love by Valarie Kaur is an extraordinary work we will explore for four Sundays beginning October 10. She is a third generation American who is a Sikh and whose life has led her to conclude that the strongest force for redeeming the world is love. Although her religious tradition is not Christian, her vision of what “revolutionary love” means and her potentially life-changing map for facing problems stands squarely alongside the kind of love that Jesus commanded us, his followers, to practice.

How to Love All as God’s Beloved Children – Part 1
How to Love All as God’s Beloved Children – Part 2
How to Love All as God’s Beloved Children – Part 3
How to Love All as God’s Beloved Children – Part 4