ODYSSEY is a thirteen-week process of teaching, discovery, conversation, and prayer designed to help Anglicans grow in their faith, their love of God and Church, and their appreciation for the Anglican Way of being Christian.
PART 1 | LOOKING AT THE BIBLE (4 weeks)
WEEK 1 – Introducing the Bible
- What is the difference between the Old and New Testaments and the Apocrypha?
- How did we get the Bible, and how was it decided what books to include?
- Why are there so many versions?
- How is the Bible trustworthy and authoritative?
OR WEEK 1 (version 2) – Anglicanism and the Bible (part 1)
- How did the Reformers view the Bible?
- What did the English Reformers mean by the Bible contains all things necessary for salvation?
- What is the role of the Apocrypha?
- Why is the Bible the Church’s highest authority (aside from Christ) but not its only authority?
WEEK 2 – Understanding the OT
- What are the major events in the Old Testament story and where do the individual books of the Old Testament and Apocrypha, fit in the Biblical story?
OR WEEK 2 (version 2) – Anglicanism and the Bible (part 2)
- How was the canon of Scripture established?
- How should the fact that the Church established the canon influence our view of the Bible?
WEEK 3 – Understanding the NT
- What are the major events in the New Testament story and where do the individual books of the New Testament fit in the Biblical story?
WEEK 4 – Reading, Interpreting, and Praying the Bible
- How do we interpret the Bible?
- How can we engage in the spiritual disciplines of personal Bible reading, meditation, and corporate Bible study?
PART 2 | CONFESSING THE FAITH (5 weeks)
WEEK 5 – The Trinity & God the Father
- What are the three Creeds that shape the faith of the Church?
- How did the Creeds come to be written and accepted by the universal Church?
- What is the Trinitarian structure of the Apostle’s and Nicene Creeds, and their Trinitarian teaching?
- What does the Athanasian Creed tell us about God as Trinity?
- What do the Creeds teach about God the Father?
WEEK 6 – God the Son
- What do the Creeds say about Jesus the person as opposed to his work (considered next week)?
- What do the Creeds teach about Jesus Christ as the incarnation of the Second Divine Person (Son of God, God from God, Light from Light, begotten not made, of one being with the Father).
- In what way is Jesus the Son of God? Is this different from the way we become sons of God through faith?
- If the second Person of the Trinity is eternal, how can he also be begotten? What does it mean to be “eternally begotten…but not made”?
WEEK 7 – The Work of the Son
- What do the Creeds teach about the saving significance of Christ’s incarnation, crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension?
WEEK 8 – God the Spirit and the Church
- What do the Creeds teach about the Holy Spirit?
- What do Creeds teach about the Church as One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic?
- What do the Creeds teach about the Church as a communion of saints?
WEEK 9 – The Five Last Things
- What do the Creeds teach about the five last things: death, second coming, judgment, hell, and heaven?
PART 3 | EXPLORING THE ANGLICAN WAY (4 weeks)
WEEK 10 – The Anglican Way of Unity
- Where did the Anglican Church come from? Was it started by Henry VIII?
- What did early Anglicans mean (and not mean) when they claimed Anglicanism was a Middle Way (Via Media)?
- Why do Anglicans distinguish between essential and non-essential doctrine?
- What do Anglicans mean by “unity in diversity” and what does it mean to be “in communion”?
- What are the instruments that hold the Anglican Communion together?
WEEK 11 – The Anglican Way of Church
- What do the terms bishop, priest, deacon, archbishop, metropolitan, primate, parish, deanery, diocese, province, synod, warden, vestry, and parish council mean?
- How have different parts of the Anglican Church emphasised different aspects of the Church’s life?
- To what do the labels liberal, evangelical, charismatic, renewal, Anglo-catholic, low church, high church, broad church refer?
- How do Anglicans look to a variety of sources including reason, tradition, and experience to aid the Church in interpreting the Bible?
WEEK 12 – The Anglican Way of Prayer
- What is the Prayer Book?
- What is the Book of Alternative Services?
- How can we use prayer books for our own prayer life?
WEEK 13 – The Anglican Way of Sacraments
- What is a sacrament?
- Why baptism and Communion?
- Are they just symbols or do they affect us?
- How can we live a sacramental life?