Stop by the Right Brain Brewery in Traverse City, Mich., on Thursday nights, and you’ll find an interesting menu: beer, conversation, and theology.
Rev. Bryan Berghoef, pastor of Watershed Christian Reformed Church in Traverse City, started a gathering called Pub Theology in the fall of 2008.
“We definitely get into deep stuff, and questions are both random and purposeful,” said Berghoef.
Pub Theology is open to anyone and often includes other members from Watershed. Turnout has ranged from 8 to 23 people during the evening hours. When the turnout is larger they break into smaller groups.
A sign posted at the entrance of the pub notes which discussion topics are on the menu for the night. Topics have included what it means to “get” Jesus and discussion of the question “If God enjoys differences in human life and nature, why are differences often part of religious conflict?”
Berghoef said they see folks from the community, some who are Christians, some who are atheists.
“I didn’t expect it to go over as well as it has,” he said. “We want to engage people in our community and in an environment they are comfortable with. We did not want to assume they would come to us for [theological] questions and answers.”