Choosing a Curriculum
Sometimes we focus on curriculum content before asking the important questions of what we are trying to accomplish, how formation fits in with our church mission and identity, and what resources and gifts we possess. The article Choosing a New Curriculum? Read This First! can help parishes and formation leaders be more selective in choosing curricula for all ages.
ChurchNext provides online Christian learning from expert teachers on topics ranging from liturgy, scripture, and church history to family, self care, and prayer. Videos may be used by individuals or groups.
On its web page The Work of the People provides this invitation to its users:
“Welcome internet travellers, to a place that hopes to guide you and provide you community on the journey of becoming fully yourself. The journey toward becoming fully human.
This place is based on a Christian ethic, so some of us who consider Jesus the most human human, might call a journey toward our shared humanity a journey toward what the Christian tradition calls ‘Christ-likeness.'”
The Work of the People is a series of videos on topics ranging from beauty and justice to identity and vocation. Many of the presenters are well-known: Barbara Brown Taylor, Brené Brown, Brennan Manning, Richard Rohr. The videos provide thoughtful reflections that can be used as lead-ins for sessions of a faith formation series, or as the content itself for formation discussions. Check out video favorites here >
Individuals are offered a 30-day free trail of unlimited streaming and can then choose to purchase a subscription, from $7/month for unlimited streaming to $25/month for 10 monthly downloads, or $250/year for unlimited streaming plus 20 downloads a month.
The Episcopal Cafe includes articles, art, and Podcasts that address contemporary issues around the issue of inclusion and empowerment: “The Episcopal Café seeks to be an independent voice, reporting and reflecting on the Episcopal Church and the Anglican tradition. The Café is not a platform of advocacy, but it does aim to tell the story of the church from the perspective of Progressive Christianity. Our collective sympathy, as the Café, lies with the project of widening the circle of inclusion within the church and empowering all the baptized for the role to which they have been called as followers of Christ.” Content can be used for personal reflection or to enhance group discussion.
Both an introduction to the Christian faith for newcomers and a good refresher for longtime church members wondering about basics of the faith, Transforming Questions helps to build community among seekers and longtime Episcopalians, those who are old and those who are young, those who are questioning for the first time and those who are questioning for the thousandth time.
The following questions are posed and discussed:
Can we question our faith?
Who is Jesus?
Why did Jesus have to die?
What do we have to do?
How should I read the Bible?
Does God answer prayer?
Why do bad things happen?
Where do we go when we die?
Why do I need a church?
Where do we go from here?
Published by Forward Movement, the Transforming Questions curriculum is available for free online. There is also a companion booklet available called Faithful Questions, which can be purchased and used by class participants or individuals interested in digging deeper into the questions above.
Possible class formats:
If you have 100 minutes: Opening collect/welcome, meal and fellowship, presentation, small-group discussion, and closing collect/dismissal.
If you have 60 minutes: Opening collect, presentation, small-group discussion, closing collect.
Transforming Questions would provide a solid curriculum for a youth or adult confirmation class.
Questions on the Way responds simply and directly to the basic questions of faith, drawing from the catechism, An Outline of Faith, found in The Book of Common Prayer (BCP 845). In the introduction, editor William Swatos, Jr. writes, “It is certainly not the purpose of this book to replace the Prayer Book catechism…Our intention is to expand upon its content and to concentrate into one place much of the essential information upon which the Prayer Book catechism is founded.”
Audience: Inquirers, confirmands, anyone who wants to know more about the Christian faith as The Episcopal Church has received it.
Questions on the Way is available from Forward Movement for $4.00/copy.
Discerning Spiritual Gifts
God has given us each unique and beautiful gifts.
Spiritual Gifts Inventory
Fill out the Spiritual Gifts Inventory to find out where your interests lie. Let this be a starting point on a grand adventure into self-discovery and a revealing of God’s Call in your life.