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 Book Studies
with Rev. Deacon Ari Wolfe

Director of Social Justice Programming at St. Columba's

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Deacon Ari is planning a series

of four book studies in 2023

Save the dates!

A Visual Guide to the Spiritual Practice Most of Us Get Wrong?


April 14 — May 5

3:30 - 4:30pm PT

What might it mean for us to truly follow what Jesus asked of his disciples? To consider everyone our neighbor - whether we know them, agree with them or even like them? To help those in need, support each other, and speak up in the face of injustice? What would it mean for our own journey of faith and how might it inform our practices and impact the people and the world around us? I have chosen books this year that will guide us through these questions and give us ideas for how we might live closer to the life Jesus called his followers to.


What if Jesus was Serious?: A Visual Guide to the Teachings of Jesus We Love to Ignore. Fridays, February 10 - March 3, 3:30-4:30pm PT


(Review from Amazon): Skye Jethani takes a look at some of Jesus’ most demanding teachings in the Sermon on the Mount and pushes us to ask whether we’re really hearing what Christ is saying. The visual component of the book makes it memorable and enjoyable to read, and Skye’s incisive reflections make it worthwhile for any Christian.


 What if Jesus Was Serious ... About Prayer?: A Visual Guide to the Spiritual Practice Most of Us Get Wrong. Fridays, April 14 - May 5, 3:30-4:30pm PT


(Review via Amazon): “The great gift of Skye is to cut through the muddle of confused thinking around the subject of prayer and focus on the profoundly simple instruction Jesus offers. He combines deep theology with practical and accessible illustrations that are incredibly helpful in getting to the heart of what Jesus taught and modeled.." —MIKE ERRE

Pastor, author, and host of the VOX Podcast


What If Jesus Was Serious about the Church?: A Visual Guide to Becoming the Community Jesus Intended. Fridays, June 16 - July 7, 3:30-4:30pm PT


(Review via Amazon) “This book was a breath of theological and practical fresh air! Too often, books about the church tell the same old, stale tale of instructions—go to church; tithe; listen to the sermon; be submitted; don’t ask questions. But these dusty formulas often ignore the ancient, powerful, and risky path that God’s people were called to undertake—to turn the world upside down by following the wild Jesus into a subversive way of living. Skye Jethani has written one of the most important books about the church I’ve ever read that every Christian would be wise to read.”

—A.J. Swoboda, assistant professor of Bible, theology, and World Christianity at Bushnell University; author of After Doubt


My Neighbor’s Faith: Stories of Interreligious Encounter, Growth and Transformation. Fridays, August 11 - September 15, 3:30-4:30pm PT


(Review from Leading writers from many religious traditions describe moments of transformation and growth through their interreligious encounters. This groundbreaking volume gathers an array of inspiring and penetrating stories about the interreligious encounters of outstanding community leaders, scholars, public intellectuals, and activist from the United States, Europe, and the Middle East. With wisdom, wit, courage, and humility, these writers from a range of religious backgrounds share their personal experience of "border-crossing," and the lessons learned from their interreligious adventures. We live in the most religiously diverse society in the history of humankind. Every day, people of different religious beliefs and practices encounter one another in a myriad of settings. How has this new situation of religious diversity impacted the way we understand the religious "other," ourselves, and God? Can we learn to live together with mutual respect, working together for the creation of a more compassionate and just world?

Cost: Free

Suggested Donation: $20

No one is turned away

The Reverend Ari Wolfe, MTS  The Reverend Ari Wolfe (she/her) is a deacon in the Episcopal Church, currently serving at St. Columba’s Church & Retreat House in Inverness, California. With an eclectic spiritual background, she holds a Master's degree in Theological Studies from the Church Divinity School of the Pacific, with a focus in the area of Queer Theology and how congregations can better extend welcome and support to people who are LGBTQ-identified. Deacon Ari was ordained in November, 2019 at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco and currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the School for Deacons. She has three adult children and lives in El Cerrito with her husband and 3 cats. A life-long social activist, she is excited to bring conversations of racial justice and a curriculum for anti-racism to the community. For more information, please visit

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