Unlock the mysteries of the Bible with LIVE instruction this Fall

This is your chance to ‘never stop learning’

Amy Bryer Brumley

Looking for a new kind of book club? Consider yourself a lifelong learner? 

The Denver Catholic Biblical School can unlock the mysteries of the Bible for you with LIVE online instruction this Fall. The school goes beyond learning about familiar stories like Noah’s Ark, to make the readers see themselves in the writings.  

If you’ve ever felt like you have all the pieces to your faith, but you’re not sure what the picture is supposed to look like, the Denver Catholic Biblical School has the answer. 

For nearly 40 years, St. John Vianney Theological Seminary Lay Division — one of more than 40 ministries supported by the Archbishop’s Catholic Appeal — has led students on a path to deeper understanding of their faith and themselves.  

COVID inconsistencies from county to county has forced the Biblical school to host classes online this fall. They will still be small and with a live instructor, but as soon as courses can continue in-person, they will return to the classroom.  

The school is dedicated to its mission of “live instruction that creates fellowship with community and like-minded people with a desire to learn God’s Word in communion with each other,” said Dr. Nick Lebish, longtime director of the school. 

Catholics have a good sense of scripture, they know the stories of Noah and David and Jesus and the mysteries,” Lebish continued. “They have the puzzle pieces, but if you don’t crack open the Bible and read the context, they’re just puzzle pieces without the box cover to know how the pieces fit together.” 

The Denver Catholic Biblical School, and the other flagship offering, the Denver Catholic Catechetical School, serve 2,500 students throughout the Archdiocese of Denver and the Diocese of Colorado Springs.  

Typically, classes of 35 to 40 students are at locations all over the states.  

Derek Barr has been an instructor for 11 years and his favorite part of teaching is the diversity of the students. From cradle Catholics to Protestant converts and people of the Jewish faith, the Word of God speaks to everyone, he said.  

“It doesn’t matter if you’re a doctor or you never finished high school or whether you’re rich or poor, everyone sees themselves in the stories…it’s God’s love story with us,” said Barr, who teaches the Old Testament to first-year students. 

If you’re not ready for four-year and two-year courses, the school also offers one-year enrichment courses for people who want just a taste of what the Biblical school is about, Lebish said. And this year may be the year for you to try it out.  

This is your chance to “never stop learning,” Lebish said.  

For more information about the Denver Catholic biblical School, visit https://archden.org/catholic-biblical-school/

To register for classes, visit https://sjvlaydivision.org/

COMING UP: Why you can (and should) enroll in the Denver Catholic Biblical School

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Why you can (and should) enroll in the Denver Catholic Biblical School

Seminary Lay Division launches new website and scholarship fund

Vladimir Mauricio-Perez

Whether you’re at the start of your first full-time job, at the top of your career or recently retired, taking some time during the week to dive deeper into your Catholic faith just keeps getting easier in the Archdiocese of Denver.

Exciting things are happening at the Denver Catholic Biblical and Catechetical Schools. With the formal creation of the St. John Paul II Scholarship Fund and the relaunch of the upgraded website that presents the in-and-outs of the program and now offers a faculty blog, any lay person in the archdiocese can see that it is possible to obtain great Biblical and catechetical formation from quality instructors.

The first reason to do it? “We cannot love what we do not know, and we cannot give what we do not have,” as Dr. Nicholas Lebish, Director of the St. John Vianney Seminary Lay Division and teacher for the Biblical School, said. “These are two very common expressions, but they’re very true in our faith. We’re called to follow Christ, and to share the Good News of Jesus Christ and our own testimonies. So, when people enroll in our programs, they are learning and loving their faith in order to share it.”

Moreover, the four-year Biblical program and the two-year Catechetical School under the Lay Division of St. John Vianney Seminary offer a wide variety of locations and times for classes, which are once a week and two hours long.

If money is a concern, there is financial aid available. Through the new St. John Paul II Scholarship Fund, the Biblical and Catechetical Schools will continue to donate around $150,000 in financial assistance to approximately half of their student population. Scholarships are awarded not only on basis of need, but also in forms of discounts to employees of the archdiocese or Catholic schools, seniors, veterans, active military and first responders.

“In continuity with the archdiocese’s evangelization efforts through the launching of the More Than You Realize initiative, we decided to formally create the scholarship fund after St. John Paul II,” Dr. Lebish said. The archdiocesan initiative, like the Biblical and Catechetical Schools, seeks to help Catholics follow their calling to become missionary disciples of Jesus Christ, impacting not only parish communities but also society.

Adding to the communal aspect of the programs, in which students have a few minutes of prayer time and discussion in small groups at the beginning of class, the new website now offers “The Scribe,” a new weekly blog written by faculty that finds its roots in an old print letter that was published by the Biblical School many years ago and carried the same name.

“Every week we’ll have a new short article from different members of our faculty. It’s a nice way for our students or non-students to get to know the faculty, as we talk about all things Catholic in the lay division, related to Biblical and catechetical topics, Church history, apologetics, etc.,” Dr. Lebish explained.

If you still have doubts about enrolling, check out the new website, which, other than explaining clearly the mission and structure of the seminary lay division, now offers video testimonials of alumni, attesting to the great fruits that come from diving deep into the Catholic faith through these programs.

“We hear all kinds of testimonies, but one very important thing we see over and over again is people falling in love with Jesus Christ and his Church — people convert, they encounter Jesus and they fall in love with him and his Church,” Dr. Lebish concluded.

To donate to the Saint John Paul II Scholarship Fund visit sjvlaydivision.org/donate.

For more information visit sjvlaydivision.org