Parish Education


         We study together the Holy Word of God and the testimonies of his great witnesses.  

          In addition we explore the great issues facing our world.  All of this is to enhance our understanding and perfect our discipleship today.  



          Adult......................9:00 to 10:00 am

          Children/Youth.....9:00 to 10:00 am

               (No children's classes during summer recess.)


          Morning Bible Study....10:00 am


          Evening Bible Study......7:30 pm


          "With the Mind" (book discussion, see below)

                         3-5 pm, every fourth Saturday


Summer Hymn School one week in June ~

Wednesday through Friday ~ Music and crafts. 

9:30 to 11:30 am. 


We also have confirmation and acolyte classes for our youth.  The dates and times of these classes vary accordingly.  See below for more information.




House of Studies

First Lutheran Church of West Seattle

(as taught by the Rev. Ronald F. Marshall)


Bible. From September to May there are two different 90 minute Bible studies on Wednesdays – at 10 am and 7:30 pm. Each class is 16 weeks long. There is also an eight week, 60 minute study at 9 am on Sundays, year round, that often studies the Bible. And every month there is a two page home Bible study made available.


Luther. From September to May the Sunday 9 am class usually includes a couple eight week classes on Luther. Quotes from Luther are also included in the church newsletter articles and in the sermon notes for each Sunday.


Historical & Social Topics. From September to May the Sunday 9 am class periodically studies an historical topic or social matter that is germane to the Lutheran church, e.g. the causes of WWI or recent US Supreme Court decisions on prayer in public schools.


Book Club. From September to May nine books on topics in Christianity are discussed in a two hour session on the fourth Saturday of each month. Book lists from past years are posted on the church webpage –


Qur’an. Since 2003, a two hour class has been offered on the Qur’an, on four consecutive Thursday nights, four times a year (January, April, July, October). Each class goes over two worksheets highlighting a total of 50 verses from the Qur’an – comparing them to the Bible. Over a hundred handouts from Islamic scholars are also made available.


Publications. Pastor Marshall has published over 50 peer reviewed articles in journals and magazines – as well as his 2013 book, Kierkegaard for the Church: Essays and Sermons. These works are available through the church office. Appointments can be made to discuss them with Pastor Marshall.

                                                                                           April 2015







With the Mind


Readings in Contemporary Theology with Pastor Marshall

12-2 pm in Room C, Sundays.


Sept. 15    Landon Dowden, Exalting Jesus in Esther: Christ-Centered Exposition (2019).

Nov. 17     Richard LeMieux, Breakfast at Sally’s: One Homeless Man’s Inspirational Journey (2009).

Jan. 19      Tara Westover, Educated: A Memoir (2018).

Mar. 16     Matthew Levering, Dying and the Virtues (2018).

May 18     D. Bruce Hindmarch, The Spirit of Early Evangelicalism: True Religion in a Modern World (2018).



Sept. 16       Sarah Jakes, Colliding With Destiny: Finding Hope in the Legacy of Ruth (2014).

Nov. 18        Bryan Stevenson, Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption (2014).

Jan. 20         George M. Marsden, C. S. Lewis’s Mere Christianity: A Biography (2016).

Mar. 17        Jacob Soll, The Reckoning: Financial Accountability and the Rise and Fall of Nations (2014).

May 19        Karen Armstrong, Fields of Blood: Religion and the History of Violence (2014).




Sept. 23     Thomas C. Oden, How Africa Shaped the Christian Mind: Rediscovering the African Seedbed of Western Christianity (2007).

Oct. 28      Martin Luther, Notes on Ecclesiastes (1527, 1532), Luther’s Works, Vol. 15.

Nov. 26     Peter Marshall, The Reformation: A Very Short Introduction (2009).

Dec. 23      Alister McGrath, The Passionate Intellect: Christian faith and the Discipleship of the Mind (2001).

Jan. 27      Michael Rota, Taking Pascal’s Wager: Faith, Evidence and the Abundant Life (2016).

Feb. 24      Greg Garrett, Entertaining Judgment: The Afterlife in Popular Imagination (2015).

Mar. 24     Thomas C. Oden, A Change of Heart: A Personal and Theological Memoir (2014).

Apr. 28      Terry Eagleton, Culture and the Death of God (2015).

May 26      Thomas C. Oden, Two Worlds: Notes on the Death of Modernity in America and Russia (1992).


Sept. 26     Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen, American Nietzsche: A History of an Icon and His Ideas (2012).

Oct. 24      Not Just Good, But Beautiful: The Complementary Relationship Between Man and Woman, ed. S. Lopes, H. Alvaré (2015).

Nov. 21     Jack Mulder Jr., What Does It Mean to Be Catholic? (2015).

Dec. 26      Nicholas Wolterstorff, The God We Worship: An Exploration of Liturgical Theology (2015).

Jan. 23      Prue Shaw, Reading Dante: From Here to Eternity (2015).

Feb. 27      Drew Dyck, Yawning at Tigers: You Can’t Tame God, So Stop Trying (2014).

Mar. 26     Dallas Willard, The Allurement of Gentleness: Defending the Faith in the Manner of Jesus (2016).

Apr. 23      Daniel William Taylor, Death Comes for the Deconstructionist: A Novel (2014).

May 28      Michael Denton, Evolution: Still a Theory in Crisis (2016).




Sept. 26     Billy Graham, Nearing Home: Life, Faith, and Finishing Well (2011).

Oct. 24      Brian Moore, Catholics: A Novel (1972, 2006).

Nov. 21     Jeremy Treat, The Crucified King: Atonement and Kingdom in Biblical and Systematic Theology (2014).

Dec. 26      Tullian Tchividjian, Unfashionable: Making a Difference in the World by Being Different (2009, 2012).

Jan. 23      Philip Jenkins, Jesus Wars: How Four Patriarchs, Three Queens, and Two Emperors Decided What Christians Would Believe for the Next 1,500 Years (2011).

Feb. 27      Alvin Plantinga, Knowledge & Christian Belief (2015).

Mar. 26     Billy Graham, Storm Warning: Whether Global Recession, Terrorist Threats, or Devastating Natural Disasters, These Ominous Shadows Must Bring Us Back to the Gospel (1992, 2011).

Apr. 23      Pope Francis, Praised Be You: On Care for Our Common Home (2015).

May 28      Eric Metaxas, Miracles: What They Are, Why They Happen, and How They Can Change Your Life (2014).



Sept. 27       Brett McCracken, Hipster Christianity: When Church and Cool Collide (2010).

Oct. 25        David Montgomery, The Rocks Don’t Lie: A Geologist Investigates Noah’s Flood (2012).

Nov. 22       Frederica Mathewes-Green, The Jesus Prayer: The Ancient Desert Prayer That Tunes the Heart to God (2009).

Dec. 27       Timothy Keller, The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism (2008).

Jan. 24        Thomas Bergler, The Juvenilization of American Christianity (2012).

Feb. 28        Tosca Lee, Iscariot: A Novel of Judas (2014).

Mar. 28      C. C. Smith & J. Pattison, Slow Church: Cultivating Community in the Patient Way of Jesus (2014).

Apr. 25       Martin Mosebach, The Heresy of Formlessness: The Roman Liturgy and Its Enemy (2006).

May 23       Ross Douthat, Bad Religion: How We Became a Nation of Heretics (2012).



Sept. 28     Caroline Coleman O’Neill, Loving Søren: A Novel (2005).

Oct. 26      Johan Corvino and Maggie Gallagher, Debating Same-Sex Marriage (2012).

Nov. 23     Duncan K. Foley, Adam’s Fallacy: A Guide to Economic Theology (2006).

Dec. 28      Stacy Horn, Imperfect Harmony: Finding Happiness Singing With Others (2013).

Jan. 25      J. M. Brandt, ed., Selections from Friedrich Schleiermacher’s Christian Ethics [Sittenlehre, 1843] (2011).

Feb. 22      Gregg A. Ten Elshof, I Told Me So: Self-Deception and the Christian Life (2009).

Mar. 22     Kevin DeYoung and Ted Kluck, Why I Love the Church: In Praise of Institutions and Organized Religion (2009).

Apr. 26     Mark A. Gornik, Word Made Global: Stories of African Christians in New York City (2011).

May 24     Richard John Neuhaus, American Babylon: Notes of a Christian Exile (2009).





Sept. 22        Richard Watson, Cogito Ergo Sum: The Life of René Descartes (2002).

Oct. 27         Jon Krakauer, Under the Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith (2004).

Nov. 24        Mark Johnston, Saving God: Religion After Idolatry (2009).

Dec. 29         W. A. Dembski, M. R. Licona, ed., Evidence for God: 50 Arguments for Faith from the Bible, History, Philosophy, and Science (2010).

Jan. 26         Carl E. Braaten, Who Is Jesus? Disputed Questions and Answers (2011).

Feb. 23         Chandra Manning, What This Cruel War Was Over: Soldiers, Slavery, and the Civil War (2007).

Mar. 23        Michael Lewis, Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game (2004).

Apr. 27        Stephen King, Desperation: A Novel (1996).

May 25        Michael S. Gazzaniga, Who’s In Charge? Free Will and the Science of the Brain (2012).




Sept. 24     Marilynne Robinson, The Death of Adam: Essays on Modern Thought (2005).

Oct. 22      Rebecca Goldstein, 36 Arguments for the Existence of God: A Work of Fiction (2010).

Nov. 26     Andreas Köstenberger & Michael Kruger The Heresy of Orthodoxy (2010).

Dec. 30 (Fri.)  Bill Myers, Eli: A Novel (2000).

Jan. 22      Julia Scheeres, Jesus Land: A Memoir (2005).

Feb. 26      Walker Percy, The Second Coming: A Novel (1980).

Mar. 26     Susan Pfeffer, Life as We Knew It: A Novel (2006).

Apr. 23     William Johnston, Christian Zen, 3rd Edition (1997).

May 28     Andrew Newberg, et al, Why God Won’t Go Away: Brain Science & the Biology of Belief (2002).



Sept. 25              Ken Grimwood, Replay: A Novel (1986, 2002).

Oct. 23               Anne Rice, Called Out of Darkness: A Spiritual Confession (2008).

Nov. 27              W. J. Wright, Martin Luther’s Understanding of God’s Two Kingdoms (2010).

Dec. 26 (Sun.)    Bruce D. Forbes, Christmas: A Candid History (2008).

Jan. 22               Peter Gay, Modernism: The Lure of Hersey (2007).

Feb. 26               Clyde Edgerton, The Bible Salesman: A Novel (2008).

Mar. 26              Reynolds Price, The Good Priest’s Son: A Novel (2005).

Apr. 23              Barbara Ehrenreich, Bight-sided (2009).

May 28              P. Pullman, The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ (2010).



Sept. 26     Bowman & Komoszewski, Putting Jesus in His Place: The Case for the Divinity of Jesus (2007).

Oct. 24      Dinesh D’Souza, What’s So Great About Christianity (2008).

Nov. 28     Quash & Ward, eds., Heresies and How to Avoid Them (2007).

Dec. 26      Philip Jenkins, The Lost History of Christianity (2007).

Jan. 30      Alister McGrath, The Twilight of Atheism (2006).

Feb. 27      Michael Faber, The Fire Gospel (2009).

Mar. 27     William Young, The Shack (2007).

Apr. 24     Carl Braaten, Because of Christ: A Memoir of a Theologian (2010).

May 29     Ann Rice, Christ the Lord: The Road to Cana (2007).


Sept. 27     Anne Rice, Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt: A Novel (2006).

Oct. 25      Mischa Berlinski, Fieldwork: A Novel (2007).

Nov. 22     Lizsa Mundy, Everything Conceivable: How Assisted Reproduction Is Changing Our World (2008).

Dec. 27      Pope Benedict XVI, Saved in Hope: Encyclical Letter (2007).

Jan. 24      Calvin R. Stapert, A New Song for an Old World: Musical Thought in the Early Church (2007).

Feb. 28      Derby Applegate, The Most Famous American: The Biography of Henry Ward Beecher (2006).

Mar. 28     Joseph Roth, Job: The Story of a Simple Man (1930, 1982).

Apr. 25     David Klinghoffer, Why the Jews Rejected Jesus: The Turning Point in Western History (2005).

May 23     Antony Flew, There Is a God: How the World’s Most Notorious Atheist Changed His Mind (2007).



Sept. 29   Fydor Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov, trans. R. Pevear & L. Volokhonsky (1880; 1990, 2002), Parts I & II.

Oct. 27     Fydor Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov , trans. R. Pevear & L. Volokhonsky (1880; 1990, 2002), Parts III, IV and the epilogue.

Nov. 24    Carl E. Braaten, Principles of Lutheran Theology, Second Edition (2007).

Dec. 29    Daniel C. Maguire, The Horrors We Bless: Rethinking the Just-War Legacy (2007).

Jan. 28    Francis Collins, The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief (2006).

Feb. 25    Matthew Stewart, The Courtier and the Heretic: Leibniz, Spinoza, and the Fate of God in the Modern World (2006).

Mar. 25   Leonard Sweet, The Gospel According to Starbucks: Living With Grande Passion (2007).

Apr. 29    Janis Rozentals, The Promise of Eternal Life: Biblical Witness to Christian Hope (1987).

May 27    Susan Howatch, Absolute Truths: A Novel (1994).



Sept. 23     Dietrich Bonheoffer, Christ the Center (1933, 1978).

Oct. 28      Bo Giertz, The Hammer of God (1941, 2005).

Nov. 25     C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity (1952, 2001).

Dec. 30      Studs Terkel, Will the Circle Be Unbroken?  Reflections on Death, Rebirth, and Hunger for a Faith (2002).  

Jan. 27      Thomas Frank, What's the Matter With Kansas?  How Conservatives Won the Heart of America (2005).

Feb. 25      Jonathan Edwards, et al, Sinners in the Hands of An Angry God (1941, 2005).

Mar. 25     John G. Stackhouse, Jr., Humble Apologetics (2002).

Apr. 22      Irvin Yalom, The Schopenhauer Cure (2005).

May 27      Sigrid Undset, Kristin Lavransdatter III: The Cross: A Novel (1922, 2000).





Sept. 24     Søren Kierkegaard, Works of Love (1847, 1995), Part I.

Oct. 22      Søren Kierkegaard, Works of Love (1847, 1995), Part II.

Nov. 26     Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger [Pope Benedict XVI], Salt of the Earth (1997).

Dec. 31      Philip Jenkins, Hidden Gospels (2001).  

Jan. 28      Glenn C. Altschuler, All Shook Up: How Rock 'n' Roll Changed America (2003).

Feb. 25      Colleen Carroll, The New Faithful (2002).

Mar. 25     William A. Dembski, ed., Uncommon Dissent: Intellectuals Who Find Darwinism Unconvincing (2004).

Apr. 22      Russell Banks, Cloudsplitter: A Novel (1998), Parts I-II.

May 27      Russell Banks, Cloudsplitter: A Novel (1998), Parts III-IV.



Sept. 25      H. Richard Niebuhr, The Kingdom of God in America (1937, 1988).

Oct. 30        Roy H. Schoeman, Salvation is From the Jews (2003).

Nov. 27       Martin Luther, The Church Comes From All Nations: Luther Texts on Mission (2003).

Dec. 26       Alvin L. Reid, Radically Unchurched: Who They Are & How to reach Them (2002).

Jan. 22         Terry W. York, America’s Worship Wars (2003).

Feb. 26         Robert Wuthnow, After Heaven: Spirituality in America Since the 1950s (1998).

Mar. 19         Ralph C. Woods, Contending for the Faith (2003).

Apr. 23          Scott R. Murray, Law, Life, and the Living God: The Third Use of the Law in Modern American Lutheranism (2002).

May 28          Mikhail Bulgokov, The Master and Margarita, trans. D. Burgin & K. T. O’Connor (1940, 1995).




Sept. 27         C. S. Lewis, Letters to an American Lady (1967, 2000)

Oct. 25           Rudolk K. and Marilynn Markwald, Katherine von Bora: A Reformation Life (2002).

Nov. 29          Søren Kierkegaard, Fear & Trembling (1843, 1983).

Dec. 27          Philip Jenkins, The Next Christendom: The Coming of Global Christianity (2002).

Jan. 24           Armed Services Devotional Book (2003).

Feb. 28          Vincent Carroll & David Shiflett, Christianity on Trial: Arguments Against Anti-Religious Bigotry (2002).

Mar. 27         Jack Miles, Christ: A Crisis in the Life of God (2001).

Apr. 24         R. R. Reno, In the Ruins of the Church: Sustaining Faith in an Age of Diminished Christianity (2002).

May 22         Nikolai Leskov, On the Edge of the World (1876, 1992).




Sept. 28       David Penchansky, What Rough Beast? Images of God in the Hebrew Bible (1999).

Oct. 26        Bernard Lewis, The Middle East: A Brief History of the Last 2000 Years (1995).

Nov. 23       Marilyn Harran, Martin Luther – Learning For Life (1997).

Dec. 28       Jørgen Bukdahl, Søren Kierkegaard & the Common Man (1961, 2001), trans., revised, edited and with notes by Bruce H. Kirmmse.

Jan. 25        Kalmbach & Kopp, Because I Said Forever: Embracing Hope in a Not-So-Perfect Marriage (2001).

Feb. 22        Nicholas Wolterstorff, Lament for a Son (1987).

Mar. 22       Mark I. Pinsky, The Gospel According to the Simpsons (2001).

Apr. 26        Bruce M. Metzger, The Bible in Translation: Ancient and English Versions (2001).

May 24        P. D. James, Death in Holy Orders: A Novel (2001).




Sept. 22       Roland E. Murphy, The Book of Job: A Short Reading (1999).

Oct. 27        Steve Sjogren, Conspiracy of Kindness (1993).

Nov. 24       Gregory A. Boyd, God of the Possible: A Biblical Introduction to the Open View of God (2000).

Dec. 22        Frits DeLange, Waitng for the Word: Dietrich Bonhoeffer on Speaking About God (2000).

Jan. 26         Lis Bellantoni, Moral Progress: A Process Critique of MacIntyre (2000).

Feb. 23         Walter Brueggemann, Prophetic Imagination, Second Edition (2000).

Mar. 23        Marilyn McCord Adams, Horrendous Evils and the Goodness of God (1999).

Apr. 27        Richard John Neuhaus, Death on a Friday Afternoon: Meditations on the Last Words of Jesus From the Cross (2000).

May 25        John Updike, Roger’s Version (1986).




Sept. 23      Saint Therese of Lisieux, Story of a Soul: Autobiography, Third Edition (1897, 1972, 1996).

Oct. 28        Bernard McGinn, The Doctors of the Church: Thirty-Three Men and Women Who Shaped Christianity (1999).

Nov. 25       Tim LaHaye, Left Behind (1995).

Dec. 23        Alexander Solzhenistyn, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich (1962).

Jan. 27         Pope John Paul II, Springtime Evangelism (1999).

Feb. 24        Phillip E. Johnson, Darwin on Trial, Second Edition (1993).

Mar. 24       Lee M. Silver, Remaking Eden: How Genetic Engineering and Cloning Will Transform the American Family (1997).

Apr. 28        John Irving, A Prayer for Owen Meany: A Novel (1989). Part I.

May 26        John Irving, A Prayer for Owen Meany: A Novel (1989). Part II.




Sept.25       Judgment Day at the White House, ed. Gabriel Fackre (1999).

Oct. 23        William F. Buckley, Jr., Nearer, My God: An Autobiography of Faith (1997).

Nov. 27       Luigi Accattoli, When a Pope Asks for Forgiveness: The Mea Culpa’s of John Paul II (1998).

Dec. 18       Can a Bishop Be Wrong? Ten Scholars Challenge John Shelby Spong, ed. Peter C. Moore (1998).

Jan. 22        Ralph M. McInerny, What Went Wrong With Vatican II: The Catholic Crisis Explained (1998).

Feb. 26       Dale A. Matthews, MD, The Faith Factor: Proof of the Healing Power of Prayer (1998).

Mar. 25      Andrew Louth, Maximus the Confessor (1996).

Apr. 22       Harriet Beecher Stowe, Uncle Tom’s Cabin or, Life Among the Lowly (1852; 1986), Chapters 1-18.

May 27       Stowe, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Chapters 19–45.




Sept.26       Jean-Francois Lyotard, The Inhuman (1991). 

Oct. 24        Peter Brown, Authority as the Sacred: Aspects of the Christianisation of the Roman World (1995).

Nov. 28       Gerhard O. Forde, On Being a Theologian of the Cross: Reflections on Luther’s Heidelberg Disputation (1518) (1997).

Dec. 26      Fyodor Dostoevsky, The Idiot (1865), trans. Alan Myers 1992, Parts 1–2.

Jan. 24       Dostoevsky, The Idiot, Parts 3–4.

Feb. 28       From the Ashes: Making Sense of Waco, ed. J. R. Lewis (1994).

Mar. 28      Rodney Stark, The Rise of Christianity: How the Obscure, Marginal Jesus Movement Became the Dominant Religious Force in the Western World in a Few Centuries (1996).

Apr. 25       Calvin M. Johansson, Disciplinary Music Ministry: Twenty-first Century Directions (1992).

May 23       Pope John Paul II, Crossing the Threshold of Hope (1994).




Sept.27       Reynolds Price, A Whole New Life: An Illness and a Healing (1994). 

Oct. 25        Nicholas Wolterstorff, Divine Discourse: Philosophical reflections on the Claim that God Speaks (1995).

Nov. 22       Penne L. Restad, Christmas in America: A History (1995).

Dec. 27      Bruce Barron, Heaven on Earth? (1992).

Jan. 24       John Updike, In the Beauty of the Lilies (1996).

Feb. 28       In Defense of Miracles, ed. Geivett & Habermas (1997).

Mar. 28      Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, A New Song for the Lord: Faith in Christ and Liturgy Today (1996).

Apr. 25       Norbert Lohfink, The Covenant Never Revoked: Biblical Reflections on Christian-Jewish Dialogue (1991).

May 23       Paul Marshall, Their Blood Cries Out: The Untold Story of Persecution Against Christians in the Modern World (1997).




Sept. 28       Robert Payne, The Holy Fire: The Story of the Fathers of the Eastern Church (1957, 1980).

Oct. 26        John Dominic Crossan, The Historical Jesus: The Life of a Mediter-ranean Jewish Peasant (1991) Parts 1–2..

Nov. 23       Crossan, The Historical Jesus, Part 3.  

Dec. 28       Elizabeth Behr-Sigel, The Ministry of Women in the Church (1987, 1991).

Jan. 25        Jean-Luc Marion, God Without Being (1991).

Feb. 22        Wayne E. Oates, Luke: A Secular Faith (1995).

Mar. 22       David W. Shenk, Global Gods: Exploring the Role of Religions in Modern Societies (1995).

Apr. 26        Thomas C. Oden, Corrective Love: The Power of Communion Discipline (1995).

May 24        Marva J. Dawn, Reaching Out Without Dumbing Down: A Theology of Worship for the Turn-of-the-Century Culture (1995).




Sept. 23      Ernest Becker, The Denial of Death (1973).

Oct. 28        Stephan L. Carter, The Culture of Disbelief (1994).

Nov. 25       Marvin Olasky, The Tragedy of American Compassion (1992).

Dec. 30        Theophan the Recluse, Unseen Warfare (1987).

Jan. 27         Joanna & Alister McGrath, The Dilemma of Self-Esteem (1992).

Feb. 24        Wolfhart Pannenberg, Toward a Theology of Nature (1993).

Mar. 23       Steven Ozment, Protestants (1993).

Apr. 27        Uwe Siemon-Netto, The Fabricated Luther (1995).

May 25        Robert Hovda: The Amen Corner, ed. J. F. Baldovin (1984).




Sept. 24      Søren Kierkegaard, For Self-Examination & Judge For Yourself! (1851, 1990).

Oct. 22        Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship (1937, 1959).

Nov. 27       Augustine Today, ed. Richard John Neuhaus (1993).

Dec. 31       Henry Abelove, The Evangelist of Desire: John Wesley and the Methodists (1990).

Jan. 28         Harold Bloom, The American Religion: The Emergence of the Post-Christian Nation (1992).

Feb. 25         Marsha Witten, All Is Forgiven: The Secular Message in American Protestantism (1993).

Mar. 25         Walter Brueggemann, Biblical Perspectives on Evangelism: Living in a Three-Storied Universe (1993).

Apr. 22          Wendy Kaminer, I’m Dysfunctional, You’re Dysfunctional: The Recovery Movement and Other Self-Help Fashions (1993).

May 27          Michael Martin, The Case Against Christianity (1991).




Sept.25       David A. Gustafson, Lutherans in Crisis (1993).

Oct. 23        Jerry L. Walls, Hell: The Logic of Damnation (1992).

Nov. 20       William H. Willimon, Peculiar Speech: Preaching to the Baptized (1992).

Dec. 26       Thomas Day, Why Catholics Can’t Sing: The Culture of Catholicism and the Triumph of Bad Taste (1990).

Jan. 22        John F. Harvey, The Homosexual Person: New Thinking in Pastoral Care (1987).

Feb. 26       Heinz W. Cassirer, Grace and Law: Saint Paul, Kant, and the Hebrew Prophets (1988).

Mar. 26      Janet Fishburn, Confronting the Idolatry of Family (1991).

Apr. 23       Susan E. Heine, Matriarchs, Goddesses, and Images of God: A Critique of a Feminist Theology (1989).

May 28       Patrick M. Arnold, Wildmen, Warriors and Kings: Masculine Spirituality and the Bible (1992).

[ALSO each month during 1993–1994 schedule, portions of David R. Griffin, Evil Revisited: Responses and Reconsiderations (1991) will be read and discussed along with the assigned book.]




Sept.27       Oscar Romero, The Violence of Love (1988).

Oct. 25        Stanley Hauerwas, Naming the Silences: God, Medicine, and the Problem of Suffering (1990).

Nov. 29       Hauerwas & Willimon, Resident Aliens: Life in the Christian Colony (1989).

Dec. 27      Michel Quenot, The Icon: Window on the Kingdom (1991).

Jan. 24       Carl E. Braaten, No Other Gospel! Christianity Among World Religions (1992).

Feb. 28       Edgar Trexler, Anatomy of a Merger: People, Dynamics, and Decisions That Shaped the ELCA (1991).

Mar. 28      Charles Cousar, A Theology of the Cross: The Death of Jesus in the Pauline Letters (1990).

Apr. 25       James Turner, Without God, Without Creed: The Origin of Unbelief in America (1985).

May 30       Daphne Hampson, Theology & Feminism (1990).


[12 year hiatus]




Jan. 13      James L. Crenshaw, Samson: A Secret Betrayed, a Vow Ignored (1978).

Feb. 3       Raymond E. Brown, The Community of the Beloved Disciple: The Life, Loves, and Hates of an Individual Church in New Testament Times (1979).

Feb. 24     Terrence E. Fretheim, The Message of Jonah: A Theological Commentary (1977).

Mar. 9      W. Sibley Towner, How God Deals With Evil (1976).

Apr. 13     Walter Brueggemann, The Prophetic Imagination (1978).

Apr. 27     Brueggemann, The Prophetic Imagination (continued).

May 19     Brueggemann, The Prophetic Imagination (continued).  \

Oct. 5      Gustaf Aulen, Christus Victor: An Historical Study of the three main Types of the Idea of the Atonement (1931, 1969).

Nov. 9      Aulen, Christus Victor (continued).








Confirmation instruction at First Lutheran Church of West Seattle is a three year program. On Sunday mornings, from September to May, the students meet for 60 minutes to study Luther's Small Caethcism (1529) with a lay instructor. Their textbook is Luther's Small Catechism with Explanation (1943) (Concordia, 1991). On Thursdays, for the same length of time, they study the Bible with Pastor Marshall, again in 60 minute classes.

The first year covers the Old Testament.

The second year the Four Gospels.

The third year the Letters of Paul, the Book of Acts, and Revelations.

The three years conclude with the rite of the Affirmation of Baptism. Upon completion, each student is given a personal copy of The Book of Concord (1580) and the Lutheran Book of Worship (1978).


The Ministry of Acolyte

First Lutheran Church of West Seattle


The Ministry of Acolytes in our parish was started in 1947 by the Rev. Norris R. Halvorson our 7th pastor (1945-1959).  Pastor Halvorson trained the acolytes the years he served as our pastor.  He also formed the churches Altar Guild and Altar Sewing Guild.

    In 1959 the Rev. M. Donald Hinderlie was called as our 8th pastor. Pastor Hinderlie continued the acolyte program but assigned the teaching to the interns (seminarians) serving our parish.  In the summer of 1968 Rev. Hinderlie asked Dean Hard, our then Assistant Choirmaster and Youth Advisor, to take over the training of acolytes.  Fifty plus years later Dean continues this teaching ministry.

    Most Lutheran church’s have acolytes.  In most cases the acolytes are shown how to light candles in "one easy lesson" and little else.  Our program is unique in the Lutheran Church in that it requires of each student a commitment of eight 1½ hour classes of instruction, required reading, practice time, and the satisfactory completion of a two hour written exam.  The subjects covered are:     Acolytes:  The Who, What, Why and How.  2.   Lutheran Worship:  A Historical Overview.  3.   Vestments:  The Things We Wear.  4.   The Sacraments:  Holy Baptism and Holy Communion.  5.   Church Architecture:  Liturgical Space/Holy Ground.  6.  Holy Objects:  How We Handle Them.

Our best estimation is that over 200 of the youth from First Lutheran Church of West Seattle have been instructed by our Parish Deacon to serve at the altar of our church as acolytes.  On Sunday, September 2, 2018, in order as pictured above, Luke Douglass and Samantha Kahn were invested as acolytes at the 10:30 am liturgy.