Adult Ministry encompass a great variety of opportunities for study, fellowship and spiritual development. At Idlewild, the questions are as important as the answers. Join us as we explore faith, support each other, and learn more about our community. 

Rebekah Abel Lamar
Associate Pastor for Christian Formation
901-726-4681 ext. 46


Christian Formation brochure - Summer 2017 


   Check out the Summer Speaker Series,
     Sunday school classes for adults, youth & children,
     weekday studies and fellowship groups, special
     events and more.



Sunday school classes are 9:40 to 10:40 a.m. All summer sessions will be held in the T.K. Young Room unless otherwise stated.

20/20 - The Thoughtful Christian Series 

The 20/20 class meets through the summer in the Session Room. Leaders are Scott Moore, John Boughter, Charles Key, and Dan Dunaway.


From May 28 through August 13, we welcome speakers from throughout the community with a different, fascinating topic each week. This summer's series includes May Jim Strickland, Mauricio Calvo of Latino Memphis, Immigration Judge Rebecca Holt, and Dr. Marjorie Haas, the new president of Rhodes College.

May 28 – Latino Memphis
Mauricio Calvo, speaker

Mauricio Calvo is Executive Director of Latino Memphis. The organization is committed to strengthening individuals, families, and communities by connecting, collaborating and advocating for health, education and justice, thus envisioning a future in which all Latinos have the opportunity and resources to become engaged and active members of the larger Memphis community.

June 4 – Taking King Seriously: Have We Lived Up to the Challenge?
Charles McKinney, speaker

Charles McKinney is Director of the Africana Studies Program and Associate Professor of History, Rhodes College. This hour will be spent in exploration. Have we taken to heart the words and opinions of the man whose death we will honor in the coming year? Have we exhibited the courage to act on our convictions, or have our churches become the “irrelevant social clubs” King warned us about? This will be a time of critical self-assessment.

June 11 – Brilliant at the Basics
Mayor Jim Strickland, speaker

Mayor Jim Strickland is in the middle of his second year as mayor, after two terms on the Memphis City Council. An update on Memphis city government’s renewed emphasis on core services: Calling it an outline for a stronger Memphis, Mayor Strickland has proposed a 2017-18 budget that increases opportunities for young people, strengthens public safety, and continues an emphasis on improving core city services—all without a property tax increase. (meets in the sanctuary)

June 18 – More Idlewild: Building Report
Steve Berger, speaker

Steve Berger is an Architect and Managing Principal for brg3sarchitects. Steve joined Idlewild in 1978, the same year he graduated from UT Knoxville School of Architecture. Combining his talents with his passion for our church, Steve is serving as principal architect for the Jones Building renovation.

The first phase of the three–phased documentation process for our renovation project has been completed. Linkous Construction has been selected to join the team and work alongside the architect and church through the remaining two phases of documentation. Steve will give a review of the current design and the work that still lies ahead from the architect’s perspective. Moving into the final phase of documentation leads to start of construction this fall.

June 25 – Immigration Status Report
Mr. Jeremy Sykes & Judge Rebecca L. Holt, speakers

Immigration has become a nationally relevant issue through executive orders, protests, and enforcement actions. Judge Rebecca Holt will provide an overview of how the immigration court process works, and immigration attorney Jeremy Sykes will discuss recent changes in both immigration enforcement and procedures for legalization.

Jeremy Sykes has practiced immigration law in Memphis for over a decade, representing immigrants for family-based immigration applications, for removal proceedings in immigration court, and in asylum proceedings.

Immigration Judge Rebecca L. Holt was appointed as an Immigration Judge by Attorney General Eric Holder on August 29, 2010. A practicing immigration attorney in Los Angeles, California for more than 30 years, she is a member of the California Bar and is one of four immigration judges currently in Memphis. Judge Holt will be speaking in her personal capacity.

July 2 – My Life: A Work in Progress
Carl Awsumb, speaker

Carl Awsumb founded the church’s McMerton Gardens. He also participates on the  Mexico Clean Water Team (and is a part-time sidewalk protestor). His life continues to evolve in service to church, neighbors, and those beyond. Come hear Carl Awsumb describe his life as a work in progress.

July 9 – Children and Family Enrichment at Idlewild
Joellyn Sullivan, speaker

Joellyn Sullivan serves as Ministry Unit Chair for our Outreach Leadership Team. She is also a deacon and has served on the Outreach Mission Unit, chairing Worldwide Missions and Global Missions Clean Water subcommittee, and Global Market. Joellyn is the current chair of Visioning for Children and Families Enrichment (CAFE) and president of the CAFE board. She has been a church member since 1980.

The concepts of early childhood brain development, factors that can interrupt healthy brain development, outcomes of adversity in childhood, and key components that contribute to best brain development will be discussed. There will also be an update on the CAFE status and plans.

July 16 – Most Compelling Gospel Writer
Jim McClanahan, speaker

Jim McClanahan is a former pastor (ordained in 1980 by the Presbytery of the Mid-South) and professor of religious studies, with a concentration in New Testament and Church History. In the New Testament, we have four gospels of the One Gospel. That is to say, we have one Jesus, and four stories about him. Why and how is each its own, compelling telling? Come find out.

July 23 – Welcoming the Nation’s Most Vulnerable: Refugee Resettlement in Memphis
Karen Spencer, speaker

Karen Spencer is Church and Community Engagement Manager with World Relief Memphis. A Canadian immigrant to Memphis in 1993, she has devoted much time raising awareness and action for the local and global poor, especially as poverty impacts women and children, often the most vulnerable and voiceless.

What does the Bible say about God's heart for the foreigner, sojourner, alien, marginalized, and persecuted? What opportunity exists for Christians to love "the least of these" seeking refuge? Hear from World Relief Memphis as they share who refugees are, where they are fleeing from and why, the process of resettlement, and ways to welcome them to Memphis.

July 30 – HopeWorks and Idlewild’s Strategic Partnership
Ron Wade, speaker

Ron Wade, Executive Director of HopeWorks, will talk about how societal barriers of education gaps and incarceration are being overcome locally to help individuals to connect with their God-given capacity for hope and learning, in order to lead a productive fulfilling life. Come hear how, as a HopeWorks strategic partner, Idlewild’s support has enabled individual men and women to experience love, respect, faith development and personal growth, while simultaneously strengthening the community by adding $6 million to the local economy and saving taxpayers nearly $500,000 annually.

August 6 – Higher Education/Moral Development: Educating for Character
Dr. Marjorie Haas, speaker

Dr. Marjorie Haas became the 20th president of Rhodes College, following a unanimous vote of the College’s Board of Trustees. Her tenure began on July 1, 2017. She is an experienced educator, successful leader, and nationally recognized spokesperson for the value of a liberal arts education.

August 13 – Race, Race Relations, and Memphis History
Anthony C. Siracusa, speaker

Anthony C.Siracusa, a native Memphian and a Ph.D. candidate in history at Vanderbilt University, focuses his work on the development of nonviolence as a strategy and ideology in the 20th century Black Freedom Struggle. His work has appeared in the Journal of Civil and Human Rights, Tennessee Historical Quarterly, and the Southwest Tennessee Historical Society Papers. His contribution to a forthcoming anthology on Memphis and the Black Freedom Struggle, entitled An Unseen Light, will be released in April 2018. 

The tangled relationship between violence and nonviolence in Memphis, examining how these two forces have shaped public policy and cultural understandings in the City of Memphis from the Civil War until the present will be traced.

August 20 – Rally Day for All Ages

Come kick-off a new year of Sunday School!  Children will spend time in their new classes and adults will have a chance to check out the many adult ministry opportunities. Mark your calendars and invite your friends!




For more details please call the church office, 726-4681.

KOINE GREEK CLASS, Wednesday, 4:30-5:30 P.M. Contact Ernest Kelly for information,   (901) 568-8462 or


Wednesdays, June 7–July 26, 7:00–9:00 p.m.
     — OR —

Thursdays, June 8–July 27, 9:30–11:30 a.m.

The groups are open to all. Meetings are at MARY LOU MCCAA'S home, 5394 Collingwood Cove. Join in by contacting Mary Lou, who will serve as facilitator, at 687-5427 or


Support Group for Mothers of Young Children

Wednesdays, June 21–July 26
9:00–10:00 a.m., 28 S. Evergreen (CAFE)

A six-week Support Group for Young Mothers will take place this summer on Wednesdays at 28 S. Evergreen, the address of the new Children and Family Enrichment Center, (CAFE). The hope for this time is that it will be a therapeutic pause  mid-week to find support in the midst of the busyness of raising little ones. Expectant mothers are more than welcome! Please RSVP to Brenda Harris at



A fellowship opportunity for families with at least one child who is JK or younger is held the last weekend of the month. Please RSVP to Brenda Harris,

Saturdays this Summer:

May 27: Judy Johnson’s Farm, 177 Kimbrough Drive, Atoka, 38004. Detailed directions to come, no GPS available.

June 24: Alison and Taylor Berger, 544 Fairchild Cove, 38120. Please bring a side dish or dessert to share.

July 15: Carol and Matt Fields, 4462 Sequoia Road, 38117. Please bring a side dish or dessert to share.



Join Young Adults on Thursday nights this summer for Theology on Tap. Meet each Thursdays from 7:00 to 8:00 at Pyro's Pizza on Union Ave. Come a little early if you want to order a pizza. Child care will be provided. Contact SARAH WOLF,, for more information.

June 1: A Biblical Diet: The Ethics of Food Consumption and Production

June 8: Civility: American Politics and Christian Responses

June 15: The Gospel of Judas: Recent Discoveries, the Bible, and Tradition

June 22: How Should Christians Vote?

June 29: Kickoff! The Ethics of College Sports

July 6: Loving Our Neighbors: Immigration and the Mexican Border

July 13: Medical Ethics 101

July 20: Serve, Not Rule: Understanding Our Role in God's Creation

July 27: Understanding Happiness

August 3: What do Presbyterians Believe?

August 10: Satan: Can the Devil Make You Do It?



Friday, August 18

All Young Adults are invited to enjoy an evening at the home of Jim and Anne Apple on Friday, August 18 from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. Contact Sarah Wolf, for more information.



Contact: BARRY OLIVER, Director of Music Ministry, 726-4681 ext. 12,

May 28–August 20: The Summer Choir meets each Sunday morning at 10:00 in the Choir Room to prepare for the 11:00 service. All interested singers are invited to contact Barry Oliver to join the choir during the summer. Regular weekly choir rehearsals resume Wednesday, August 23.



There are two Friday "eat-out" groups. Contact the group coordinator to join. If you'd like to be a part of a new group contact Anne Apple,

First Friday Dine-Out Group, 6:30 P.M.. Contact Carol Good, 726-4681

Third Friday Dine-Out Group, 6:30 P.M.. SEPT - MAY. Contact Ann Fain, 334-4810



All women are invited to study circles and activities of Presbyterian Women. Presbyterian Women Gatherings, which include program and lunch, are at the church on the third Tuesday of September, January, April and May. Circles meet on the first Tuesday, October–May, for Bible study and fellowship. (Click link above.)  Contact Teresa Caldwell,, 


 Learn more about Presbyterian Women.

ChristCare Groups 

ChristCare Groups: Transforming Lives. Making Disciples.

ChristCare groups are small communities (5-12 participants) of faithful people who meet regularly to care for one another, to help one another grow in faith, and to support one another in Christian discipleship. Each gathering includes mutual care and encouragement, prayer and worship, relating of biblical principles to life, and service to others. Although the interests of the individual groups are diverse — for example, spiritual formation, blended families, spiritual themes in movies, hot topics, relationships, spiritual discipline, theology and the arts, and men in mid-life — each ChristCare group includes prayer and worship, community building, Bible study, and outreach. See the ChristCare for group info, or contact Anne Apple at 726-4681 or








A Greeting From Our Pastor

Get Involved

Education, Outreach, Fellowship

Worship Service

Assemble In God's Name

Presbyterian Beliefs

What We Believe To Be True