The Cathedral of St. Philip - Atlanta, GA

What Is A Personal Relationship With Jesus? The Dean's Forum For Lent

An article from the Cathedral Times
by the Very Reverend Samuel G. Candler,
Dean of the Cathedral of St. Philip

It is my honor to announce a special series of Dean's Forum classes for Lent. Beginning this Sunday, March 12, we will be examining a question that has both fascinated and confounded modern-day Christians: what is a personal relationship with Jesus?

I know that there are many types of Christians in the world. Some of us are old-fashioned and traditional; we are Christians because our parents were and we were brought up in the church. The way we learned church fifty years ago will forever be the way we know church.

Others of us are new-fangled and innovative. Maybe we made conscious choices to be Christian, as opposed to being something else, or as opposed to being nothing at all. We learned that Christianity is always something new, and that excites us. Some of us are very political Christians. Some of us are very devotional. Some of us are activists; some of us are contemplative; many of us are both.

We will discuss Christian identity in this season of Lent. What is a Christian? How are we being Christian in the twenty-first century? What is an American Christian? We will review the histories of Western and Eastern Christianity. And then we will meet the question: Can we know Jesus personally? Can we know God personally?

My answer will be Yes! My conviction is that serious Christianity is always personal. It might or might not be private, but it is always personal.

The schedule is as follows:

March 12

Christian Identity
What Makes us Christian?
What is a personal relationship?


March 19

What are the types of Christian prayer?
How can I pray better?


March 26

What makes my service Christian?
How do people meet Jesus in service?


April 2

Guest Speaker: Charles Marsh, professor of religion at the University of Virginia, and author of The Beloved Community.


Join us! Have a blessed and holy Lent, AND-one more thing-the Cathedral depends upon your annual pledge to the work and ministry of this place. We cannot prepare a realistic budget until we have a realistic expectation of how much people can give in the year 2006. Your pledge really does make a difference, whether it is $10 a year or $10,000 a year. We do have some very large pledgers, but the Cathedral continues to thrive because of the number of pledges! We need you!

Sam Candler signature



The Very Rev. Sam Candler