The new lectionary year begins on December 1, 2019, with the First Sunday in Advent, Year A. The Region of Ohio is hosting a Lectionary Preaching Camp to introduce the Gospel of Matthew, the main gospel in the new year, and to think about important ways in which passages and themes in Matthew intersect with main themes in the Christian Year with some attention to other readings. This camp will be offered Thursday night and Friday, October 24 and 25 at Camp Christian, the historic Disciples venue in beautiful Marysville, Ohio. It is specifically designed for ordained ministers and seminarians.
The camp will begin with an overview of key purposes that Matthew intended for this gospel in light of the historical situation of the time. The group will explore distinctive features of Matthew’s literary style and, most importantly, theological emphases. Particular attention will be given to the central theme of Jesus’ ministry in the First Gospel—the Realm of God. Also highlighted will be Matthew’s relationships with Judaism (especially the Pharisees) and the Roman Empire. The camp will consider passages from each season of the Christian Year as representative of conversation among the First Gospel, the Christian Year, and today’s context. The leader will present one of those passages, and campers will work in small groups on others. The groups will brainstorm possibilities for preaching.
Participants will not come away with complete sermons. But they should come away with exegetical, theological, hermeneutical, and homiletical questions and possibilities. The plan is to name the toughest theological questions and look them in the eye.
The leader is Ron Allen, a long-time friend of the Christian Church in Ohio, who taught preaching and Gospels and Letters at Christian Theological Seminary for 37 years before retiring in 2019. He has recently been part of the ministers’ Spiritual Life Retreat and Adult Conference. Ron’s most recent book is I Will Tell You the Mystery: A Commentary on Preaching from the Book of Revelation (2019). Several of his books are popular study books for Sunday School classes and small groups—especially A Faith of Your Own: Naming What You Really Believe, Reading the New Testament for the First Time, and The Life of Jesus for Today. He was also an editor for the widely used three volume commentary Preaching God’s Transforming Justice: A Commentary for Preaching on the Lectionary introducing 22 New Holy Days for Justice. He has written or edited more than 40 other books.
This event will start at 3:00pm on Thursday, October 24th and end at 3:00pm on Friday, October 25th. Along with the program, included in with the registration fee is Dinner on Thursday as well as Breakfast and Lunch on Friday. There is also the option to include overnight accommodations at Camp Christian.
Registration fee is $75.00 with lodging at Camp Christian or $45.00 without. The registration deadline is Tuesday, October 15th. Any registrations received/paid for October 16th or later must include an addition $10 late fee per person.