Adult Learning

As Christ-followers, we commit to a lifelong journey of learning and experience in an effort to grow our faith. The term discipleship articulates this journey, where we are not only called to learn the teachings of Jesus Christ, but also to live them. As members of FirstChurch, our primary charge is to grow disciples, and that begins with each of us.

While there are infinite ways to experience God’s grace, three primary points of connection comprise discipleship:

Worship: As we hear and study God’s Word, we begin to understand the nature and purpose of God.

Learning: As we engage in critical study, both alone and with others, we more fully appreciate the meaning behind God’s Word, how the Holy Spirit guides us, and how we can share faith with others.

Service: As we move into deeper relationship with God, the changes that take place within us call us to love others through action.

At FirstChurch, we’re offering ways to experience these connection points through both community and personal devotion (piety). This discipleship guide contains information that will guide you along your personal discipleship journey. For questions, contact Rev. Evan Jones at




Click image for PDF of Fall 2018 Discipleship Guide.




Fall Classes



Can I Get a Witness? Gaining the Clarity and Courage to Share Your Story.

Christ’s call to the early Christians was to witness to the transforming love that they had experienced through faith.  How can we shed our outdated understanding of witnessing and develop new ways of talking about our faith authentically?  Join this four-week study to explore this topic more.

Facilitator: Rev. Ann Willet

Tuesdays, 7 – 8 p.m.
Oct. 23 – Nov. 13
Room G04

Thursdays, Noon – 1 p.m.
Sept. 13 – Oct. 4
Room G06 (Sept. 13)
Room G04 (all others)

Invitation to Genesis

This eight-week study takes us into the rich tapestry of Genesis. Pride, family relationships, conflict and journey all showcase the best known stories of creation, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Rebekah and Joseph. Participants read just two chapters per week and do not have to have an in-depth knowledge of the Bible to enjoy and benefit from participation. Book cost is $10.

Facilitator: Loren Willet

1 orientation (Sept. 9) and 8 meetings
Sundays, 12:15 – 2 p.m.
Sept. 16 – Nov. 4
Room G04
Lunch available for $10/week

Why Discipleship Matters

In an age of quick fix and easy answers, some things still remain a part of a longer journey. Discipleship is a life-long path of learning and growth and exploration. In this two-week class, we will seek to answer basic questions like what is discipleship, why does it matter and what is the point?

Facilitator: Rev. Evan Jones

2 meetings
Mondays, 6:30 – 8 p.m.
Sept. 24 & Oct. 1
Room G04

Revolutionary Acts: Our Christian Origin Story Told by the Book of Acts

The Book of Acts is unique in the New Testament.  Only Acts tells us of the struggles, tragedies and triumphs of the early Christian church.  From Jesus’ Great Commission to Paul’s conversion and ultimate imprisonment in Rome, Christ’s message was spread “to the ends of the earth.”  This class will explore Acts’ histories, biographies, homilies and letters, and discover our miraculous origins as Christ-followers.

Facilitator: Courtney Mitchell

4 meetings
Mondays, 6:30 – 8 p.m.
Oct. 22 & 29; Nov. 5 & 12
Room G04

Where Does the Money Go?

Do you ever wonder how your financial gifts are used by FirstChurch? Or why we have various fundraising efforts? Join us for one night to learn how all the pieces fit together to form our financial puzzle. Select one evening that works for you; each class offered will have the same content.

Facilitators: Karen Kendall, Lori Louis and Alexis Willis

3 options
Tuesday, Oct. 30, Nov. 6 or 13
6:30 – 8 p.m.
Room G05



Parenting Mindfulness

Mindfulness is the quality of deliberate attention, bringing purposeful awareness to one’s experience with acceptance and without judgment. In a three-part class, participants will practice mindfulness strategies and simple activities to induce self-care and establish a mindfulness practice with their family. Participants will be able to apply mindfulness strategies to their scheduled lives immediately, reaping the benefits of improved focus and concentration, decreased anxiety and stress, self-soothing capacity, stronger impulse control, and heightened empathy.

Facilitator: Crystal Reimer

Mondays, 6:30 – 8 p.m.
Sept. 10, 17, 24
Room G05

Discover your Enneagram Type

The Enneagram is an ancient tool for discerning our personalities. Learning the
characteristics of the nine types helps us tell the difference between our own ego
and the Holy Spirit within. Eight fall classes combine instructional DVDs by Enneagram master Suzanne Stabile, with skilled facilitation and interactive discussion that will help you understand yourself and others. Workbook cost is $20.

Facilitator: Susan Cantrell Holloway
assisted by Rev. Ann Willet and Dana Effler

8 meetings
Tuesdays, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Sept. 11 – Oct. 30
Room G06

Flow Yoga

Julianne offers all-level flow classes to connect mindful breath with mindful movement. Through guided movement, these classes offer a great way to slow down and breathe deep in the midst of all things “to do.”

Facilitator: Julianne Harris

Tuesdays & Thursdays
Noon – 1 p.m.
Sept. 18 – Dec. 13*
Room 202
Cost: $5 per class

* No class on Oct. 30, Nov. 1 & 22


Book Study: Grateful by Diana Butler Bass

In her latest book, Diana Butler Bass explores why gratitude is missing as a modern spiritual practice, offers practical suggestions for reclaiming it, and illuminates how the shared practice of gratitude can lead to greater connection with God, our world and our own souls.

Facilitator: Sherrye Bass

3 meetings
Mondays, 6:30 – 8 p.m.
Oct. 29, Nov. 5 & 12
Room 212

*Grateful is available on Amazon starting at $13

Diana Butler Bass Comes to FirstChurch
Nov. 19

In partnership with other faith communities in the city, FirstChurch is pleased to bring Diana Butler Bass to Dallas. Bass will discuss material from her books, including “Grateful”, and thoughts on dimensions of American spirituality.  A former Evangelical turned Episcopalian, Bass holds a Ph.D in religious studies from Duke University, and is one of the most prolific voices on American religion today.

Centering Prayer

Centering Prayer in its most simple form is a “wordless, trusting and opening of oneself to the Divine Presence”. It is the simplest form of prayer and a spiritual practice most necessary for individuals seeking to grow and transform. It is a method of reconnecting us with our natural aptitude for the inner life and union with the divine dwelling within us.

Facilitator: Rev. Joe Stabile

2 meetings
Mondays, 6:30 – 8 p.m.
Sept. 24 & Oct. 1
Room G04



Two Worldviews: Hinduism & Christianity:

Godliness, messiahs and even time itself could not be more different in Hinduism and Christianity, but if we drill deep into these faiths, we see a common understanding of humanity’s mission expressed in divergent ways. This Hindu-Christian conversation will cover death, creation and ethics, symbols, architecture and the sacred arts.

Facilitator: Eric Shaw

3 meetings
Tuesdays, 6:30 – 8 p.m.
Sept. 18 & 25, Oct. 2
Room G04

Mental Illness and the Christian Response

This course addresses the current understanding of what constitutes mental health and mental illness. The history of the relationship between religion and mental illness will be discussed as well as how Christians may respond to the mentally ill and the many issues associated with mental illness in our culture. Didactic material will be presented and ample time for discussion is planned.

Facilitator: Dr. Ed Nace

4 meetings
Mondays, 6:30 – 7:45 p.m.
Sept. 24, Oct. 8 & 22, Nov. 5
Room G06

Intentional Conversations on A Way Forward

The United Methodist Church has been engaged in a debate over human sexuality for over forty years. The discourse has settled on two specific issues of the Church: marriage of same gender couples and ordination of openly gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender persons. Dr. Andy Stoker will be discussing these issues and what it means for The United Methodist Church.

Facilitator: Dr. Andy Stoker

3 options
Sundays, Sept. 30 & Oct. 28, 1:30 p.m.
Monday, Nov. 12, 6:30 p.m.
Room G06

From Relief to Empowerment

Journey through what it means to really love our neighbors, to show compassion that leads to transformation, and to create equity that is sustainable. This missional series will use the book by Laceye and Gaston Warner and the video “Poverty, Inc.”

Facilitator: Rev. Holly Bandel

4 meetings
Mondays, 6:30 – 8 p.m.
Oct. 22 & 29, Nov. 5 & 12
Room G05
Book is available on Amazon for $25




CLICK HERE TO REGISTER for long term studies.

Disciple 1

This is a introductory 34-week Disciple Bible Study course that offers a complete overview of the Bible. The study moves from the Creation stories of Genesis to the New Jerusalem of Revelation – participants are invited to bring their experiences and struggles to Scripture. This is transformation, not just information.

The Tuesday night study will be held in partnership with St. Paul UMC downtown. Meetings will be held at FirstChurch.

Facilitator: Rick Horch

Sundays, 9 – 10:45 a.m.
Starting Sept. 9
Fall and Spring semesters, with breaks for Thanksgiving and Christmas
Room G01

Tuesdays, 6:30 – 8 p.m.
Starting Sept. 11
Fall and Spring semesters, with breaks for Thanksgiving and Christmas
Room G01

Disciple 2

This is a 32-week study of Genesis, Exodus, Luke, and Acts that contains many of the great stories of our faith. This study proclaims the transforming power of Scripture while teaching Bible study skills that will take you deeper into the Scripture for the purpose of changing habits and transforming lives.

Facilitators: Jeff & Sarah Chestnut

Sundays, 9 – 10:45 a.m.
Starting Sept. 9
Fall and Spring semesters, with breaks for Thanksgiving and Christmas
Room G13

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER for long term studies.


Parking in the Bryan Tower garage is FREE – but you must bring your parking ticket in and have it stamped at the Information Desk.

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