St. John Neumann Catholic Church recently announced that it would, once again, be running The Alpha Course.
The Alpha Course was designed and first run in London by the Church of England 30 years ago and is being conducted in 112 languages across nearly 170 countries in various Christian communities.
To date, The Alpha Course has impacted 25.5 million people. St. John Neumann presented The Alpha Course in the spring of 2015 as one of the first three area Catholic parishes to do so, with more than 1,000 people attending.
The Alpha Course is designed for people who attend church regularly and people who are not churchgoers, and is open for anyone who would like to attend, regardless of religious affiliation or background.
Alpha Course guests attend for many different reasons. Some want to investigate whether God really exists; and some have questions they would like to discuss. Many guests have never been to a church before, while others may attend regularly but feel they have never had a personal understanding of Christianity or encounter with Christ.
The Alpha Course is based on small groups of up to 10 guests, led by one or two facilitators who encourage discussion and ensure that guests’ questions are fully aired.
The Alpha Course runs for nine weeks with a day or weekend-retreat experience in the middle. Each session begins with a meal, then a short talk about different aspects of the Christian faith, followed by a discussion when guests can ask questions and freely contribute their opinions, while abiding friendships are formed.
Registrations are open now for The Alpha Course. Registrants can choose to attend sessions on Thursday mornings, Thursday evenings, Sunday afternoons or Sunday evenings.
Sessions begin on Sept. 10 (for Thursdays) and Sept. 13 (for Sundays). Childcare is available, but registration is needed.
For more information call the St. John Parish Office at 740-965-1358, or visit the parish website at saintjohnsunbury.org/alpha.
Established in 1977, St. John Neumann Church is part of the Catholic Diocese of Columbus, serving nearly 1,500 households in the Sunbury area. Father David Sizemore has been its pastor since 2005.