Methodism 101 Retreat

Join us for Formation in Wesleyan Theology and Practice - Methodism 101 Retreat Sept. 22-24, 2022 at Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary.

Experience an immersion in what it means to be Methodist through an engaging retreat at LTSS with space for spiritual renewal and holy experiences of community.

Featuring the Rev. Dr. Melanie Dobson, assistant professor of Methodist Studies at LTSS.

Learn key aspects of Methodist history and theology, including the:

  • Story of the founder of Methodism, John Wesley, and the earliest Methodists
  • Importance of the theology of grace
  • Contributions and leadership of African Americans in Methodism
  • Organization and governance (polity) of the United Methodist Church

Registration Information

The event cost is $125/person and includes all meals and retreat materials. Please note that registration for this event is limited to 30 registrants. 



Aerial view of LTSS campus with City of Columbia skyline
  • Thursday, September 22, 2022

    12-2 p.m.
    Arrive and check in
    Price House

    2 p.m.
    Welcome and Opening Worship with Communion
    Christ Chapel

    3 p.m.

    3:15 p.m.
    Instruction session 1: John Wesley and early Methodism

    4:30 p.m.
    Small Group 1:  Practice-Searching the Scriptures

    5 p.m.

    6:30 p.m.
    Evening Prayer
    Christ Chapel

  • Friday, September 23, 2022

    8 a.m.
    Morning Prayer
    Christ Chapel

    8:15 am
    Student Union 

    9 a.m.
    Instruction Session 2: Transforming Grace

    10:15 a.m.

    10:30 a.m.
    Small Group 2: Class Meeting Practice (Tradition)

    12 p.m.
    Student Union 

    1:30 p.m.
    Instruction Session 3: Practical Divinity

    2:45 p.m.

    3 p.m.
    Small Group 3: Work of Mercy 

    4:15 p.m.
    Free time and Break

    5:30 p.m.
    Student Union 

    6:30 p.m.
    Evening Prayer  

  • Saturday, September 24, 2022

    8 a.m.
    Morning Worship
    Trinity Labyrinth

    8:15 a.m.
    Student Union 

    9 a.m.
    Instruction Session 4: The Method of our Mission

    10:45 am

    11 a.m.
    Small Group 4: Covenant Renewal Prayer/Discipleship

    12 p.m.
    Closing Worship—Celebration of the Love Feast


  • Rev. Melanie Dobson, Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary
    Melanie Dobson

    The Rev. Melanie Dobson is an assistant professor and the Lefler and Wohltmann Chair in Methodist Studies. In addition to Methodism classes, she teaches theology and ethics and classes in mission and evangelism.

    Dobson became an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church in 2005. She has served as a pastor in rural, suburban and urban churches. Her interests include intersections of theology, health and healing as well as ecology and racial justice. She trained at the Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation as a spiritual director. Dobson also is a registered yoga teacher and incorporates yoga into her ministry.

    She has published a book, Health as a Virtue: Thomas Aquinas and the Practice of Habits of Health, and has had articles published in the Wesley Theological Journal and the Journal of Religion and Health

    Dobson received a Doctorate in Theology, Master's in Theology and Master's in Divinity from Duke University Divinity School and a Bachelor's of Arts in English/Political Science from Furman University.

Local Accommodations & Attractions

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Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary is located in Columbia, the capital city and cultural center of South Carolina. Find local hotels, restaurants, area attractions and events.

A limited amount of housing for the event is available on campus. For more information, please contact Helen Herrera at

Explore Columbia, S.C.

COVID-19 Information

Please watch for communications from the university or seminary for any changes to the festival’s schedule of events.

Current COVID-19 Protocols