Dr. Vernon Meyer at The Fountains

Dr. Vernon Meyer at The Fountains: Widows, Orphans, & Aliens, Oh My!

Vern Meyer pointing croppedJoin the Rev. Dr. Vernon Meyer for this Spring’s annual three-part series on theology: Widows, Orphans, & Aliens, Oh My! The Political, Economic and Social Implications of the Biblical Vision. Hosted by The Fountains, the series will begin on Thursday morning, April 16th from 10am to 11:30 and continue on Thursday mornings April 23rd and 30th.
In this year’s sessions, Dr. Meyer will unpack three texts at the heart of not only ancient Israel’s prophetic tradition, but that served as the foundation of Jesus’ ministry of compassion and call for justice.

The Bible portrays God as having a “special place in God’s heart” for widows, orphans, and aliens – people who are particularly vulnerable to oppression, mistreatment, and abuse. In delving into Exodus 22:21-24, Deuteronomy 10:17-18, and Deuteronomy 24:17-22, Dr. Meyer will help us see what the texts tell us about ancient Israel and its world, and then bring them into the 21st century to consider the challenges these texts present to our current realities of budgets, political alliances, and social commitments.

 “A concern for and care of aliens, orphans, widows, the poor, the disadvantaged, the helpless, the disabled, etc., lies at the very heart of “true Christianity.” So what are the implications of the biblical tradition for our political, economic and social commitments and obligations today?”

The Rev. Dr. Vernon Myer is a former Catholic priest, who has an MA in Theology from Catholic Theological Union in Chicago, an MA in Pastoral theology from the University of San Francisco, and a PhD in Theology from the University of Dayton. Dr. Meyer is currently the Director of the Arizona Center for Theological Studies (www.azcts.org) and a United Church of Christ minister in Sun Lakes.

All in the community are encouraged to attend. The classes are free, but donations are encouraged. The presentations will be in the sanctuary at The Fountains United Methodist, 15300 N Fountain Hills Blvd. Additional information may be obtained by calling The Fountains at 480-837-7627. Childcare is available upon request.

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“Widows, Orphans, & Aliens, Oh My!” Schedule:

April 16th  Exodus 22:21-24: “You shall not wrong or oppress a resident alien, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt. You shall not abuse any widow or orphan. If you do abuse them, when they cry out to me, I will surely heed their cry; my wrath will burn, and I will kill you with the sword, and your wives shall become widows and your children orphans.”

April 23rd  Deuteronomy 10:17-18: “For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who is not partial and takes no bribe, who exercises justice for the orphan and the widow, and who loves the strangers, providing them food and clothing.”

April 30th Deuteronomy 24:17-22: “You shall not deprive a resident alien or an orphan of justice; you shall not take a widow’s garment in pledge. Remember that you were a slave in Egypt and the Lord your God redeemed you from there; therefore I command you to do this. When you reap your harvest in your field and forget a sheaf in the field, you shall not go back to get it; it shall be left for the alien, the orphan, and the widow, so that the Lord your God may bless you in all your undertakings. When you beat your olive trees, do not strip what is left; it shall be for the alien, the orphan, and the widow. When you gather the grapes of your vineyard, do not glean what is left; it shall be for the alien, the orphan, and the widow. Remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt; therefore I am commanding you to do this.”