First United Presbyterian Church

Fall Spiritual Growth

The information contained in this post is now outdated. FUPC has moved into our Winter Spiritual Growth season. Both adult Spiritual Growth classes have shifted curriculum. You can find the updated information at:



Beginning with Kickoff on Sunday, September 13, FUPC will be offering two classes during the Spiritual Growth hour (Sundays, 9:30 – 10:30 am). Both classes will meet via Zoom! ALL are welcome to attend both classes, and weekly attendance is not necessary to find the classes fruitful and engaging.

Below, please find information about each class, as well as the Zoom account being used. If you have further questions about Spiritual Growth at FUPC in general, please email us at and we will try to get back to you as quickly as possible. If you have specific questions about one of the classes listed below, please contact the leader.


Led by Derrik Olsen and Pastor Phil Butin, this class typically discusses a book about important matters of faith.

The Thoughtful Christians group took a break during the summer, but resumes with fall kickoff on September 13th. They will meet on Sunday mornings during the Spiritual Growth Hour, 9:30 – 10:30 am. Thoughtful Christians will use FUPC’s “Zoom One” account (details below).

For the fall, this group will be discussing Gratefulness, The Heart of Prayer: An Approach to Life in its Fullness, by David Stendl-Rast. Stendl-Rast grew up and was educated in Vienna, Austria, and is now a brother of the Mount Saviour Benedictine Monastery in Elmira, NY. He has lectured around the world.

The book is full of wisdom and unexpected insights. Pastor Phil notes that it has had a positive affect on his own spiritual life. The chapter titles will give you a taste of the way he brings together ideas in unexpected ways to give fresh perspectives on spiritual growth:

1. Aliveness and Wakefulness
2. Surprise and Gratefulness
3. Heart and Mind
4. Prayers and Prayerfulness
5. Contemplation and Leisure
6. Faith and Belief
7. Hope: Openness to Surprise
8. Love: A “Yes” to Belonging
9. Fullness and Emptiness

To participate, you will need a copy of the book. Since the church building and office are not yet open, it will be necessary for you to order your own copy of the book. Many are available through Amazon for under $10 used, or around $15 new. Find the book on Amazon HERE.

We do not want the cost of the book to be a barrier to your participation. If you need assistance purchasing a copy of the book, please contact the church office.



This fall, “The Present Word” Bible study group begins meeting again! Dennis Brewer and Jane Steinkraus will be leading this weekly Bible study on the topic of “love for one another.”

This class is accessible for anyone who wants to join, and does not require you to purchase a book.

The class meets Sunday mornings during the Spiritual Growth Hour, 9:30 – 10:30 am, on FUPC’s “Zoom Two” account (details below). At this time, “The Present Word” is also considering meeting outdoors on the FUPC property for those who feel comfortable attending in person. Masks will be required, and the class will finish up in time for you to drive home and attend the 11 am livestream service from your living room!

The information to access both of FUPC’s Zoom accounts is below. You can also download this image to save on your computer or print HERE.

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