What Curriculum do You Use? Take this Important Survey

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“The information collected from the surveys resulted in a number of new initiatives and programs…”

Curriculum, Curriculum Everywhere…

Across all our denominations, there are hundreds of curricular resources. And we know the needs of churches are changing as well as the resources we tap into for our faith formation programs. How can we learn about trends of what is being used? Moreover, how do we know about teacher preparedness, and if that magical “Christian education hour” still exists? How many congregations have paid staff who oversee such ministries and how are they compensated?

The Importance of Surveys
Sharon Ely Pearson, editor and Christian formation specialist with Church Publishing Incorporated, surveyed churches in 2009, 2010, and 2013 regarding which published curricular resources they used, and what needs were not being met. The information collected from those surveys resulted in a number of new initiatives and programs, including Godly Play Digital and a new human sexuality program entitled These Are Our BodiesTalking Faith & Sexuality at Church & Home (to be launched this August).

Contribute Your Wisdom: Take the 2016 Curriculum Survey
It is time for another survey – to learn what congregations are using in their faith formation programs as well as what new resources are needed. This survey also asks about your ministry as a Christian educator – whether clergy or lay, paid or volunteer. All responses are confidential. Results of the survey will be shared later this summer. Again, the survey is for all denominations, and all types/sizes of churches.

Your experience is valuable! Please take just 5 minutes now to answer the survey. It will close on June 10, 2016.

Click Here to Take the Curriculum Survey

Originally posted Build Faith.

EYE17 Dates & Location Announced

The next Episcopal Youth Event (EYE) will be held at the University of Central Oklahoma in Edmond, OK on July 10-14, 2017. EYE17 is being planned by the Episcopal Church in partnership with the Diocese of Oklahoma.

“EYE is always a great event for both our youth and for our adults,” Presiding Bishop Michael Curry commented.  “I have attended many of the Episcopal Youth Events and I have fond memories of joining our youth in celebration, learning and fun. EYE17 is a strong component of the Jesus Movement.”

“The Diocese of Oklahoma is excited about hosting the Episcopal Youth Event in 2017,” Oklahoma Bishop Edward J. Konieczny said.  “The youth are an integral part of the Diocese of Oklahoma and hosting the Episcopal Youth Event is an affirmation of our commitment to their formation.”

EYE traditionally draws hundreds of youth from throughout the Episcopal Church. EYE 2017 marks the 13th EYE and remains a popular and well-attended event. EYE 2017 is geared for youth in grades 9-12 during the 2016-2017 academic year and their adult leaders.

“University of Central Oklahoma – UCO – offers a great venue for EYE, with lots of room and great facilities for the range of activities we are planning for EYE17,” Bronwyn Clark Skov, Episcopal Church Youth Ministries Missioner said.  “UCO is located just outside of Oklahoma City, so travel will be easy for all.”


For information contact Skov.

e-Formation Program and Webinar Schedule

eform16-logoThis is the moment you’ve all been waiting for. The e-Formation workshop and webinar schedules are now available: Full Program | Webinar Program

e-Formation is a learning community and an ecumenical conference on ministry in a digital world. The conference is shaping up to be amazing. This is the largest slate of presenters yet.

Make sure you register today!

Conference held June 6 – 8 at Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria, Virginia.

For more offerings and opportunities click here.

Called to Transformation ABCD facilitator formation workshops announced for 2016; registration open for April

Slide1Called to Transformation is a partnership between The Episcopal Church and Episcopal Relief & Development.  The workshops are designed to train leaders in methods and tools to enhance local ministry and mission.

I highly recommend this training for Youth Ministers, especially at the regional and diocesan level. Called to Transformation could help yield some innovative approaches to mission and ministry. This is leadership development that holds potential across generations, locations, and traditional divisions in ministry. – Bronwyn Clark Skov

Asset-Based Community Development engages communities at a grassroots level to recognize local assets – such as people, buildings, relationships and even faith – and creatively envision how to use that abundance to achieve goals and imagine new forms of ministry.

“ABCD brings people together to transform their communities. It focuses on the gifts and strengths of individuals, congregations and organizations. By recognizing their own gifts, people are empowered to more deeply invest in achieving the shared goals of the community.” -Sean McConnell, Episcopal Relief & Development’s Senior Director of Engagement

Through the trainings, participants will learn about the theory and the practice of ABCD work, and then begin the process of creating a working plan to implement an Asset-Based Community Development project in their own ministry community.

Four Called to Transformation Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) facilitator formation workshops have been slated for 2016: April 18-21, Solomon Episcopal Conference Center, New Orleans, LA; June 13-16, Dumas Bay Center Seattle, WA; August 8-11, Nashotah House, Milwaukee, WI; and September 19-22, Bosque Center, Albuquerque, NM.

Register now for April training.

For more information click here or visit calledtotransformation.org

Lenten resources for a spirit-filled season

The holy season of Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, February 10, and continues to the festive day of Easter on March 27. Resources for Lent 2016 from the Episcopal Church will be available here and include a wide array of prayers, reflections, links, videos, social media, bulletin inserts, and more for all ages to participate in and experience a spirit-filled Lenten season.


Centering on the theme Go!, daily reflections on a scripture verse containing the word go will be available here and on Facebook here.

The reflections, prepared by many authors, will be personal stories, poems, and other ways that the verse is meaningful and related to the theme Go! Among the authors are Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, bishops, Episcopal Church staff, and members of United Thank Offering, Episcopal Migration Ministries, National Association of Episcopal Schools, and Episcopal Relief & Development.

Sharing your experiences

Share your experiences and photos of congregations and individuals focusing on Ash Wednesday and Lent, such as Ashes to Go.  Submit your photos here.

Other resources

Episcopal Public Policy Network Lenten Series

House of Bishops Theology Committee Lenten Reflections

Young Adult and Campus Ministry Lenten Reflections

“Journey to the Cross” at d365

Episcopal Relief & Development Lenten Meditations

Society of Saint John the Evangelist Lenten Series

Lent Madness

Note: Additional resources, including the Presiding Bishop’s Message for Lent 2016, will be available leading up to Ash Wednesday and throughout Lent.

Presiding Bishop Invites Observance of Episcopal Relief & Development Sunday, February 14

logoThe Most Rev. Michael B. Curry, Presiding Bishop and Primate of The Episcopal Church, invites all Episcopalians to join in observing Episcopal Relief & Development Sunday on February 14, the first Sunday in Lent.

“I urge all congregations to devote the first Sunday in Lent to reflecting on the life-giving work of Episcopal Relief & Development and giving meaningfully to support this vital ministry. As the season of Lent calls us to re-examine our priorities, let’s unite in truly seeking and serving Christ in all persons, through the important work of Episcopal Relief & Development.”

-Most Rev. Michael B. Curry, Presiding Bishop and Primate of The Episcopal Church

Episcopal Relief & Development offers an online toolkit of worship resources for congregations and groups wishing to participate in the commemoration, including:

  • Lenten Meditations booklets in English and Spanish
  • Bulletin inserts in English and Spanish
  • Prayers in English and Spanish
  • Checklist for organizers
  • List of resources to order from Episcopal Marketplace

The Episcopal Relief & Development Sunday online toolkit is available at episcopalrelief.org/Sunday.

Now in its second year, Episcopal Relief & Development’s Walk in Love prayer guide follows the Anglican Cycle of Prayer in lifting up each diocese of the Anglican Communion over the course of 12 months. Congregations and individuals wishing to receive weekly emails may sign up online at episcopalrelief.org/WalkInLove.

Digital resources for Lent and Episcopal Relief & Development Sunday can be downloaded from episcopalrelief.org/Lent. Printed Lenten Meditations booklets in English and Spanish, as well as hope chests, offering envelopes, prayer cards and other materials, may be ordered from Episcopal Marketplace online or by calling 1.866.937.2772. Orders should be placed by February 1 for delivery to most locations by Ash Wednesday, though expedited shipping is available.

Lift Every Voice, 2016 Application Open

image001Lift Every Voice is a three-year ministry, sponsored by the Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina, designed to build an understanding of social injustice that will help participating young people develop a vision and skills to lead their dioceses’ programming around race and inclusivity. The second year, Lift Every Voice, 2016, will be held at the Christian Brothers Centre near Cape Town, South Africa, July 3-10, 2016. The focus of the conference for 2016 will be on South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation process, strengthening our “listening skills” of others’ stories and discerning how to respond to these stories as disciples of change.

LEV 2016 Application Form for US Applicants

Download Flyer for LEV, 2016

Applications are due by Dec. 15th. Primary consideration will be given to youth aged 16-22. The 2016 application is open to all; those who attended last year and apply will have priority. Any available spots will then be open to adults through January 6th, 2016

Contact: Beth Crow, Lift Every Voice Coordinator beth.crow@episdionc.org 1-919-208-0438


Christian Formation Conference : Kanuga

2016_ChristianFormationConference_ThemeArtwork_1000x4002016 Christian Formation Conference
JUNE 13, 2016 – JUNE 17, 2016

These are the words of our faith, but how do we live them out in this complicated, multicultural, technologically advanced century?  Learn with us about how to be the Church beyond our houses of worship.

The week will include more than 20 workshops covering such topics as racism sensitivity training, means of reconciliation, ministry with the homeless, how to host a dinner church and a wide variety of nuts-n-bolts workshops about formation basics. View the workshop list here.

See more information here.

Register here.

Contact: chris.lynn@kanuga.org

Apply now: SUMMA Theological Debate Camp

SUMMA Student Theological Debate Society is accepting applications for the 2016 session of SUMMA Debate Camp.

61a3d86c-c169-46ca-83f2-e5fdc47ca33bSUMMA Student Theological Debate Society is inviting high school students across the United States entering grades 9-12 to apply for the 2016 session of SUMMA Debate Camp, July 18-27, 2016. Held at the School of Theology at the University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn., SUMMA is an incredible opportunity for students to explore their faith through intellectual channels, meet lifelong friends, and have a lot of fun on one of the most beautiful college campuses in the country!

At SUMMA Camp, students learn skills for debate, public speaking, and theological exploration. They room in the dorms, eat in the university dining hall, attend lectures and seminars at the School of Theology, and they have an enormously beneficial intellectual experience. They also swim, play sports, watch movies, go bowling, and have lots of great, summer fun!

Click here for more information and to apply.

Contact: Rev. Cindy Fribourgh at summa@sewanee.edu or (501) 580-9066



Advent Devotional Series: Following the Star Returns

Star_square_300dpi(BIRMINGHAM, Ala.) – Following the Star, the devotional series for Advent and Christmas, returns to Passport, Inc.’s devotional website d365.org November 27.

This series features scripture, prayer, and meditative thoughts accompanied by gentle music. Writers, including Kyle Oliver and Linnae Peterson who represent the Episcopal Church, have centered their thoughts on the classic themes of the season. Following the Star features a collection of piano arrangements from Ken Medema, Mark Hayes, Joseph Martin, and David Burroughs. The musical reflections provide a familiar and gentle backdrop that accompanies the daily devotional.

Following the Star is part of the year-round devotional site, d365.org, a ministry of Passport, Inc., and sponsored ecumenically by Passport, Inc., Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, Presbyterian Mission Agency, and the Episcopal Church’s Youth Ministry Office of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society. d365.org hosts daily devotionals and three seasonal series for Lent, Advent, and the beginning of the school year, as well as over two million visitors annually. Daily devotionals are available on the web, and through the free iOS app.

Download Following the Star Bulletin Insert.

If you are interested in writing for d365, please send sample devotions to the Missioner for Youth Ministry, Bronwyn Clark Skov.