The Alternative Seminary
Current Classes


The Gospel of Luke: The Reign of God and the Empire of Caesar
Thursday evenings, January 14 – March 3
7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Project HOME, 1515 Fairmount Avenue

Is Good News for the poor bad news for many of us in North America?

The Gospel of Luke was probably written for a mixed community that included many socially privileged members who were enjoying the benefits of empire -- which means it is perhaps the most relevant Gospel to the North American church. This eight-week study will explore how Luke seeks to subvert the claims of Caesar while calling on a community to live out the alternative community of the reign of God. We will look at specific themes of Luke's theology, including social reversals, inclusion of sinners and enemies, forgiveness and mercy, and many radical teachings on money and possessions. This will be an intensive course that will wrestle with many deeply challenging texts -- especially for people of privilege -- and how they challeng us on what it means to live out the reign of God in the midst of American empire today.

This course is especially significant for churches that are following the C cycle of the Common Lectionary, which will focus on gospel readings from Luke throughout the year.

This course will be facilitated by Will O'Brien, coordinator of The Alternative Seminary. The cost for this course will be $75 (or whatever you can afford).

To register, contact Will O'Brien at 215-842-1790 or by January 3.


The Alternative Seminary occasionally offers Saturday morning sessions on a variety of provocative topics. All of these events take place at Project H.O.M.E., 1515 Fairmount Avenue and feature a light breakfast.

Saturday morning, December 5, 2015
9:30 – 11:30 a.m.
Project HOME - 1515 Fairmount Avenue

The celebration of Christmas is often wrapped in innocent, feel-good, Hallmark-card imagery. But in fact the biblical texts describing the coming of Jesus are making powerful assertions about the politics of the Bible that speak very much to our contemporary global crises. We will reflect on the "nativity narratives" in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke to see how they express core biblical themes of justice and liberation. We will try to "un-domesticate" these tales of liberation and reflect on how they are truly challenging us in terms of our allegiance and our discipleship. A perfect event for Advent.
A light breakfast will be served. A $5 donation is requested to cover costs (though if you can't pay, please feel free to come anyway!).
For those who aren't in the Philadelphia area: We are live-streaming this event. Go to
Co-sponsored by The Alternative Seminary, Bartimaeus Cooperative Ministries; Circle of Hope, The Simple Way, Red Letter Christians, Catholic Peace Fellowship, the House of Grace Catholic Worker, and the Brandywine Peace Community

If you are interested in participating, please contact Will O'Brien at 215-842-1790 or by November 30.


The Alternative Seminary c/o Will O'Brien . 4715 Pulaski Avenue Rear . Philadelphia, PA 19144 . 215-842-1790