Adult Forum Fall Schedule Unveiled — Beyond Our Walls

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From Fall, 2016 through Spring, 2017, St. Paul’s Adult Forums take participants Beyond Our Walls to explore more completely the ways in which God works in the broader world.  For many, church offers a refuge from the busyness and pain of the world, a safe place from all the uncertainty and trouble that exists outside. But the Good News of Jesus also beckons the followers of Christ to engage with and love the world past the edges of the church grounds.

The Forum this fall aims to illuminate several different ways in which God is at work beyond our walls. Forum speakers include leaders of social service organizations, important civic institutions and other faith communities, as well as leaders within St. Paul’s and the larger Church who offer a variety of perspectives on how God shows up in the world out there.

It should be a diverse, exciting and informative year! The Forum takes place every Sunday at 10:10 AM in the St. Hilda Room (except for the month of September, when they take place in the Chittim-Howell House / ARTWorks Gallery). Forums conclude in time for the 11 AM Eucharist. Please come as often as you can.

September 11, 2016 10:10 AM

Responding to Trauma and Tragedy: Poems for the Fifteenth Anniversary of 9/119.11 Sculpture

As the fifteenth anniversary of the tragic events of September 11th, 2001 is marked, violent and traumatic events continue to take place far too regularly both close to home and around the world. Laurel Peterson, who serves as the Poet Laureate of Norwalk and teaches at Norwalk Community College, discusses how, when faced with the worst, poetry can help individuals and whole communities to grieve, process and heal.


September 18, 2016 10:10 AM

Norwalk Public SchoolsShaping the Next Generation: The Future of Norwalk Public Schools

Now beginning his second year as Superintendent of Norwalk Public Schools, Dr. Steven Adamowski shares the challenges he believes are currently facing the students of Norwalk and how the school system plans to address those challenges. The forum offers the opportunity to share thoughts about what the next generation needs and questions about where the school system is headed.


September 25, 2016 10:10 AM

The New Washington Village: The Choice Neighborhoods Initiative and the Changing Face of South NorwalkNew Washington Village

Washington Village, located in South Norwalk, is the oldest public housing development in Connecticut. In 2010, the Norwalk Housing Authority received a substantial and competitive grant from the Choice Neighborhoods program of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to rebuild Washington Village as a vibrant mixed-income neighborhood and to revitalize South Norwalk with educational opportunities and job training. Tom Ivers, director of The Choice Neighborhoods Initiative, outlines this vision and talks about the progress that has been achieved so far.


October 2, 2016 10:10 AM

Faith-and-Science-for-webFinding God in Science: Bridging the Gap between Faith and Reason

Over time, science and Christian faith have had their differences, yet ways have been proposed for them to coexist and even benefit from one another. As St. Francis’ Day approaches, Ryan Kopreski, who serves as Instructor of Science Research at Rye Country Day School, and Elia Kopreski, who also has a scientific background and now runs her own marketing company, join us to share their own thoughts and lead a discussion on how to reconcile faith and science.  Ryan & Elia and their children worship regularly at St. Paul’s.


October 9, 2016 10:10 AM

Problems that Affect Us All: Substance Abuse and Addiction and What to Do About Themliberation-programs-logo-ma

Alan Mathis directs Liberation Programs, a local organization devoted to combatting substance abuse and addiction in all of the ways those problems can show up. As part of Liberation’s “Minute for Mission” outreach program to religious communities, Alan brings awareness of just how much damage substance abuse and addiction cause in communities and provides a window into how his organization is addressing these challenges.


October 16, 2016 10:10 AM

Al Madany Islamic Center -- The HourChildren of Abraham Too: The Muslim Community in Norwalk

The Al Madany Islamic Center of Norwalk now has a property of its own, the building at 1 Union Park Street that formerly housed Grace Episcopal Church and now serves as a physical testament to the presence of the Muslim community in Norwalk. Azra Asaduddin, one of the members of Al Madany and an active participant in interfaith work in the area, shares some of the experiences, desires and concerns of the Muslim community, important voices to listen to in today’s political climate.


October 23, 2016 10:10 AM

HealingCaring for the Whole Person: The Sacred Ministry of Healing

Every Sunday at St. Paul’s during one of the principal services of Eucharist, prayers for healing are offered in the side aisles. More members of St. Paul’s offer themselves in service to this ministry than any other, and many more receive the benefits of being prayed for each and every week. The Rector of St. Paul’s, Nicholas Lang, explains the origins of this ministry and how it can be meaningful for those who participate in it.


October 30, 2016 10:10 AM

Norwalk PoliceProtecting and Serving the Community: Policing in Tense Times

In recent months and years, the work of police and other law enforcement officers has been in the national spotlight, particularly in terms of how the police interacts with people of color. The Chief of the Norwalk Police Department, Thomas Kulhawik, provides insight into how the Norwalk Police approach its work and offers his own thoughts on the issues captivating the nation.


November 6, 2016No forum on All Saints’ Sunday


November 13, 2016 10:10 AM

Striving for Justice and Peace Among All People: A Report from the Parish Social Justice Summit

Members of the Social Justice Team plan for parish-wide summit

Members of the Social Justice Team plan for parish-wide summit

In September, the Social Justice and Outreach Team, led by warden Bob Giolitto, hosted a Social Justice summit to discuss how Social Justice and Outreach efforts through St. Paul’s might be re-thought and re-focused in the local community. After several weeks of processing the results of the summit, the team shares plans for the future of this important work—and invites the rest of us to contribute in our own ways.


November 20, 2016 10:10 AM

Brendan iconHoly Art: An Introduction to Icons and Icon Writing

Icons—highly symbolized artistic representations of God or saints—are objects that are central to the expression of the Eastern Orthodox tradition of Christianity and have also found their way into many Western Christian churches. Massachusetts iconographer Mary Street “wrote” the icons that now hang above St. Paul’s High Altar, including two new ones to be dedicated this weekend. She outlines the process and shares about her own experience creating these beautiful works of art.


November 27, 2016 10:10 AM

Advent Retreat Follow-upAdvent Retreat

St. Paul’s 2016-2017 seminarian and Yale Divinity School senior Helen Durany leads an Advent retreat on November 26 and debriefs the retreat during this forum. This is an excellent chance for those not able to attend the retreat to get a taste of the topics explored, as well as an opportunity for those who did attend the retreat to share their experiences and explore those topics further.


December 4, 2016 10:10 AM

lgbtq cultural compentencyLiving Radical Welcome in a Changing World: LGBTQ Cultural Competency for Ever-shifting Times

When it comes to LGBTQ issues, things are moving so fast that it can often feel hard to keep up. If you’re a little bewildered by it all, don’t fear! St. Paul’s vestry member and Triangle Community Center Executive Director Anthony Crisci is here to offer a brief and up-to-date training on LGBTQ issues. Participating in this training is an important way to demonstrate an ongoing commitment to making all of God’s people feel welcome at St. Paul’s.


December 11, 2016 10:10 AM

Visiting the Least of These: The Challenges and Rewards of Prison MinistryKairos prison ministry

Many at St. Paul’s have never been to a prison, yet visiting the imprisoned was one of the tasks Jesus encouraged his followers to do. St. Paul’s parishioners Ellie Nardelli and Serge Karpow discuss their involvement in a program called Kairos Prison Ministry, sharing the difficulties and the joys of doing that work—and the significant impact it can have on the lives of those being visited.


December 18, 2016 10:10 AM

Open Door ShelterNo Room in the Inn: Tending to the Homeless of our Streets

365 days a year, Open Door Shelter in South Norwalk offers a warm bed, showers and three meals a day to men, women and families of Norwalk that have no other housing. As the feast of Christmas nears, when the Holy Family had trouble of their own finding a place to sleep, Executive Director of the shelter, Jeannette Archer-Simons, talks about the plight of the homeless and poor today, the steps her organization has taken and how individuals and communities can all pitch in to help.



There will be no forum on December 25 (Christmas Day), January 1 (New Years’ Day) or January 8 (Epiphany Sunday).

Beyond the Walls: the 2016-2017 Adult Forum series resumes on January 15, 2017. The Spring series of forum speakers includes :

  • State Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff
  • Chris Steadman, humanist and author of “Faithiest”
  • Timothy Hodapp, Canon for Mission Collaboration and Congregational Life for the Episcopal Church in Connecticut,
  • representatives of several nonprofit organizations (Person to Person, Laurel House, One Woven Community, the Greater Norwalk Chamber of Commerce, the Americares clinic in Norwalk, the Tony Blair Faith Foundation) and faith communities (the Wilton Hindu Mandir, Twining Vines Sangha, Congregation Beth El, and the Sikh Research Institute).


Stay tuned for more in