Diana Butler Bass image

Feb. 25: Ever feel like Jesus has been kidnapped by the Christian Right and discarded by the Secular Left?

Saving Jesus  sample  on Vimeo.

Let’s talk: Wednesdays: Feb. 25—March @ 7 p.m.

Ever feel like Jesus has been kidnapped by the Christian Right and discarded by the Secular Left?

We’ll be listening to and then discussing some challenging ideas about a not so meek and mild Jesus on five Wednesday this winter. Each night we’ll share a simple supper, watch a clip from Saving Jesus Redux, discuss our thoughts, and then spend a few minutes worshiping in community. We’ll start on Feb. 25 and continue each Wednesday with a new topic on Wednesdays through March 25.


1.    February 25         What Can We Know about Jesus?

2.    March 4               Jesus’ Ministry of Compassion

3.    March 11             Who Killed Jesus?

4.    March 18             Atonement

5.    March 25             Practicing Resurrection

Saving Jesus Redux is a new small group exploration of a credible Jesus for the third millennium. New contributors including Brian McLaren, Diana Butler Bass, and Robin Meyers join Marcus Borg, Walter Brueggemann, John Dominic Crossan, Matthew Fox, and Amy-Jill Levine.


Diana Butler Bass – An independent commentator on American religion, a leader in progressive Christianity and author of several books includingChristianity for the Rest of Us and A People’s History of Christianity.

Marcus Borg imageMarcus Borg – Emeritus Professor of Religion and Culture at Oregon State University. Author of many books includingMeeting Jesus Again for the First Time andThe Heart of Christianity. Borg lectures extensively throughout North America and overseas.

Rita Nakashima Brock imageRita Nakashima Brock – Founding Co-Director of Faith Voices for the Common Good, dedicated to creating a nationwide community of conscience. Author of the award-winning Journeys by Heart and co-author of Proverbs of Ashes.

Walter Brueggemann imageWalter Brueggemann – Old Testament scholar and retired professor from Columbia Theological Seminary. Also a United Church of Christ minister, Brueggemann has authored hundreds of articles, several biblical commentaries and more than 50 books, including The Prophetic Imagination, Genesis: A Bible Commentary for Teaching and Preaching, Finally Comes the Poet, and Theology of the Old Testament.

Ron Buford imageRon Buford – The visionary behind the United Church of Christ’s “God is still speaking” campaign. He served as the coordinator and spokesman of the initiative until mid-2006. Ron speaks and conducts workshops regularly on a national level.

Minerva Carcaño imageMinerva Carcaño – Having served as an organizer of various cooperative ministries and a pastor in churches from Texas to California, Bishop Carcaño is the first Hispanic woman to be elected to the Episcopacy in the United Methodist Church. Former Director of the Mexican-American Program of Hispanic Studies at Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University, she is currently serving as the Bishop of the Desert Southwest Conference.

John Cobb imageJohn Cobb – Emeritus Professor at the Claremont School of Theology and Graduate School and Founding Co-Director of the Center for Process Theology. Recipient of the Grawemeyer Award of Ideas Improving World Order, his many writings include Christ in a Pluralistic Age, God and the World, For the Common Good, and Reclaiming the Church.

John Dominic Crossan imageJohn Dominic Crossan – Professor Emeritus of Biblical Studies at De Paul University. Generally acknowledged to be the premier historical Jesus scholar in the world. He has written twenty books including Jesus: A Revolutionary Biography, Who Killed Jesus? and The Birth of Christianity. A Roman Catholic monk for nineteen years and a priest for twelve years, Crossan is a former co-chair of The Jesus Seminar and chair of the Historical Jesus Section of the Society of Biblical Literature.

Yvette Flunder imageYvette Flunder – Senior Pastor of City of Refuge Community Church UCC in San Francisco and Residing Bishop, Refuge Ministries/Fellowship 2000. Serves as Executive Director of the Ark of Refuge, Inc., and as chair of the Social Justice Commission for the World Bishop’s Council and as a member of the Board of Directors of the Justice and Witness Ministry of the United Church of Christ.

James Forbes imageJames Forbes – Senior Minister Emeritus of Riverside Church in NYC, President of the Healing of the Nations Foundation, and host of “The Time Is Now ” on Air America Radio. Newsweek magazine recognized Forbes as one of the 12 “most effective preachers” in the English-speaking world.

Matthew Fox imageMatthew Fox – Founder of the University of Creation Spirituality (Wisdom University) in Oakland, California. He was ordained a Roman Catholic priest in 1967. Due to his controversial teachings, he was silenced by Cardinal Ratzinger in 1988, and dismissed from the Dominican order in 1992. In 1994 he was received as an Episcopal priest. He is the author of Original Blessing, Creation Spirituality, and The Coming of the Cosmic Christ.

Lloyd Geering imageLloyd Geering – Emeritus Professor of Religious Studies at Victoria University, Wellington, New Zealand, a fellow of The Jesus Seminar, and an ordained minister of the Presbyterian Church of New Zealand. He is the author of God in the New World, The World to Come, and Christianity without God.

Amy-Jill Levine imageAmy-Jill Levine – E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of New Testament Studies at Vanderbilt University Divinity School. Her most recent publications include The Misunderstood Jew, the edited collection, The Historical Jesus in Context, and the fourteen-volume series, Feminist Companions to the New Testament and Early Christian Writings.

Brian McLaren imageBrian McLaren – Speaker, pastor, and networker among innovative Christian leaders, thinkers, and activists. Author of several books including A Generous Orthodoxy, Everything Must Change and A New Kind of Christianity. He is a frequent guest on television, radio, and news media programs.

 Robin Meyers imageRobin Meyers – An ordained minister in the United Church of Christ, a tenured professor in the philosophy department at Oklahoma City University, a syndicated columnist, an award-winning commentator for NPR and author of several books, including Saving Jesus from the Church. Senior Minister of Mayflower Congregational UCC church of Oklahoma City.

Pat McMahon imagePat McMahon – An award winning talk-show host, editorial commentator, and host of the “The McMahon Group” and “The God Show” both on KTAR radio (Phoenix, AZ). Recipient of seven Emmys, major national and international radio awards, numerous civic, educational, religious and humanitarian awards, and is the only two-time Hall of Fame recipient of the Arizona Broadcasters Association.

'CulverCulver “Bill” Nelson – Founding Pastor Emeritus of the Church of the Beatitudes in Phoenix. A founding member of The Jesus Seminar, he serves as the editor of the Westar Institute’s magazine, “The Fourth R.”

Rebecca Ann Parker imageRebecca Ann Parker – Seminary President, Professor of Theology of Starr King School. She is an ordained United Methodist minister in dual fellowship with the Unitarian Universalist Association. Co-author of Proverbs of Ashes and a book of collected essays Blessing the World: What Can Save Us Now.

Stephen Patterson imageStephen Patterson – A professor focusing on New Testament and Christian origins at Missouri’s Eden Theological Seminary, he is the author of The God of Jesus and the Search for Meaning and Beyond the Passion. Dr. Patterson is also a fellow of The Jesus Seminar and a contributing editor of Bible Review.

Helen Prejean imageHelen Prejean – Roman Catholic Sister and leading American advocate for the abolition of the death penalty. She has ministered to numerous inmates on death row, and has authored two books based on her experiences with several inmates on death row, Dead Man Walking and The Death of Innocents. Prejean bases her work at the Death Penalty Discourse Center in New Orleans.

Tex Sample imageTex Sample – Former Academic Dean and Emeritus Professor of Church and Society at the Saint Paul School of Theology, Sample is a freelance lecturer, workshop leader, consultant. His books include Ministry in an Oral Culture andEarthy Mysticism.

Bernard Brandon Scott imageBernard Brandon Scott – Darbeth Distinguished Professor of New Testament at the Phillips Theological Seminary, University of Tulsa, OK. Charter member ofThe Jesus Seminar, co-chair of the Bible in Ancient and Modern Media Section of the Society of Biblical Literature, and a consultant to the American Bible Society experimental film translations. He is the author of several books, including Re-Imagine the World and Hear Then the Parable.

John Shelby Spong imageJohn Shelby Spong – The retired Bishop of Newark, New Jersey. Columnist and author of many books including including Rescuing the Bible from Fundamentalism and Why Christianity Must Change or Die. Guest on numerous national television broadcasts including The Today Show, Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher, and Larry King Live, Bishop Spong lectures around the world.

 Dave Tomlinson imageDave Tomlinson – Anglican vicar of St. Lukes in North London, former leader of the House Church movement in England and author of several books, includingThe Post Evangelical and Re-Enchanting Christianity.

Emilie Townes imageEmilie Townes – Andrew W. Mellon Professor of African American Religion and Theology at Yale Divinity. Author of such books as Womanist Justice, Womanist Hope, and Breaking the Fine Rain of Death. Professor Townes is an ordained American Baptist minister.

 Winnie Varghese imageWinnie Varghese – Episcopal priest in New York City. She is a contributing editor to The Witness, and is an active member of the National Executive Council of the Episcopal Peace Fellowship.

Posted in ARC, Cyprian's Church, First United Lutheran Church.