2018 Conference Workshop Offerings
Forma is thrilled to announce the Workshop Offerings for the 2018 Annual Conference: Formed for Justice.
The following workshops are listed in alphabetical order. We will release a full schedule of when each workshop will be offered well before the Conference begins.
Many thanks to the Workshop Team: Charlotte Hand Greeson, Joy Owensby, Sharon Ely Pearson, The Rev. David Henson, Roger Hutchison, Patrick Kanga, and Missy Morain for their tireless efforts. We received more than 90 workshop proposals and due to space constraints, we were only able to accept these proposals which we think represent the best offering for our time together in Charleston, SC. The proposals which were not selected have been held for future conferences and other teaching opportunities.
2018 Forma Conference Workshops
Formed for Justice
Adult Sexuality: The New Frontier
Since most sexual activity between adults in the United States takes place outside of marriage, the political and social world is blowing up with issues about justice around our bodies, gender, power, and human trafficking as the church itself seeks to be less ambiguous about covenants, mystery, pleasure, and wholeness. This offers rich opportunities for holding conversations in the context of a faith community to re-think, as adults, the roles our bodies play in our lives, relationships, and communities.
Heidi J. A. Carter currently serves as the Lay Associate for Ministry at St. Timothy's Episcopal Church in Creve Coeur, Missouri. Ms. Carter has served numerous task forces in the Episcopal Church regarding human sexuality. With more than 25 years of experience in Christian formation focused on youth and adults, she is a past president of Forma and once diocesan formation leader. She also serves as the Director of Consultant Services for LeaderResources.
Caring for Those Who Care: Keeping Leaders Healthy
As ministers, lay professionals, and volunteers, much of our work focuses on helping other members of the church learn and cultivate ways in which to best care for themselves. But do we practice what we preach? In this workshop, explore the ways in which we practice (or don't practice) self care in physical, spiritual, and emotional ways, both to remain in good balance and health as well as better model this for those to whom we minister. Bring your ideas, challenges; where you have succeeded in caring for yourself and where you have forgotten to do so.
Kathleen O’Donoghue has over 35 years of experience in caring for others before caring for herself, being a minister, hospice chaplain, birth, foster and adoptive parent. Kathleen serves as the Children, Youth, and Family Minister at All Saints, Brookline, MA. Kathleen is particularly passionate about offering an extravagant hospitality to all God’s people.
Creating a Trauma Informed Ministry
How can we develop ministries of healing and wholeness in traumatic environments? A Trauma Informed Ministry can provide varied avenues for individual and community healing and wholeness through the power of partnerships and collective engagement, especially in environments where people experience high levels of individual and collective trauma. Using The Church of the Advocate in the Diocese of Pennsylvania as an initial example of theory and application, this workshop will also be a place to share and hear best practices from other ‘trauma-informed’ ministries.
Renee McKenzie-Hayward is the Vicar and Chaplain at The Church of the Advocate, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where she also serves as a Chaplain to Temple University. Renee teaches as adjunct professor at Rutgers, Temple, and Palmer and Lutheran Theological Seminaries, including classes on Black Church History & Theology, Racial Justice, and Womanist Theology. She is a 2017 Fellow at the Episcopal Church Foundation.
Decision Making Tools for Your Ministry
From curriculum to context, location to liturgy, time to theme, making decisions regarding the “who, what, when, where, and how” of ministry is essential. How do we know we are making the best decisions possible in our own context? Using tools from social science, this workshop will provide practical skills and tools for each attendee to better define their ministerial context, weighing/measuring alternative choices, and implementing a decision. If you develop programs and need to make decisions with confidence in order to be able to inform and speak about your ministry, you’ll walk away with tools to put into practice.
Kate Huston is the Director of Formation at St. Paul’s Cathedral in Oklahoma City with responsibility for all formation events at the Cathedral including those for children, youth, and adults. She serves on a number of diocesan committees and has served as a Deputy to General Convention. Her previous experience as an academic in the area of social science and in teaching organizational decision-making led to her capstone project for her 2015 Forma Certificate in Leadership for Lifelong Christian Formation.
Deep Green Faith: Creation Care as the Work of Reconciliation
By relying on largely secular frameworks of creation such as stewardship of material resources, political activism, and social advocacy, many churches or people of faith have created barriers to a much-needed, deeper spiritual engagement around these issues. We will analyze these frameworks and explores alternative structures for using the work of reconciliation, gospel celebration, and fellowship as a means to more deeply engage our own personal faith and move our congregations forward in joining the mission and celebration of God’s work of reconciling the whole creation through Christ.
Jerry Cappel is resident Priest at St. Matthews Episcopal Church in Louisville, Kentucky. He serves on the Advisory Council for the Stewardship of Creation for The Episcopal Church and is the Environmental Network Coordinator for Province IV. He is a GreenFaith Fellow, and a Fellow for the Center of Religion and the Environment at Sewanee.
Milestones that take place in our faith lives––baptism, communion, confirmation, to name a few––are celebrated in community together in our congregations. However, throughout our lives there are countless other milestone moments in our daily lives, such as losing a tooth, getting a driver’s license, or becoming a grandparent. How do we provide opportunities for these milestones to be recognized in the home and within our faith community? In this workshop, participants will learn five basic steps to create your own milestone moment as an opportunity to bring God’s presence into everyday lives.
Debbie Streicher has facilitated and developed faith formation programs for all ages in the congregational setting for more than 25 years. She is Co-Director of Milestones Ministry and Past President of the Christian Education Network of the ELCA now living in West Virginia. Her vision is to involve all ages in faith formation, strengthen family relationships through spiritual growth, and empower God-given gifts to do ministry.
Forming Francis: Equipping Veterans to Lead Your Parish Justice Ministry
St. Francis was formed for his epic ministry by his experience in combat and the trials of homecoming. How did these experiences form him for his life-work of reconciliation, mercy, and justice? We will explore Francis’ story and how today's veterans can find a life of service to the poor, the marginalized, and all those experiencing injustice, oppression, and racism. The workshop will focus on practical ways to invite, welcome, and connect members of the military and veterans. We will also explore the emerging subject of moral injury, the spiritual effects of PTSD, and how the Church offers a unique set of healing rituals for the invisible wounds of war.
David W. Peters served as an enlisted Marine and an Army Chaplain, deployed to Baghdad, Iraq in 2005. His ministry experience includes youth ministry, hospital and military chaplaincy, as well as parish experience. David’s writing has been published by the Huffington Post, Oxford University Press, and he is the author of two books, Death Letter: God, Sex, and War (Tactical 16 Press, 2014) and Post-Traumatic God: How the Church Cares For People Who Have Been to Hell and Back (Morehouse, 2016). David is the founder of the Episcopal Veterans Fellowship in Texas and was named one of five Episcopal Church Foundation 2017 Fellows. He enjoys speaking to groups about war and the trials of homecoming, long-distance running, reading novels, extra-dark chocolate, and bicycle commuting. He is the father of three sons and is married to the lovely Sarah Bancroft.
Four Steps to Financial Wellness
What’s the forecast for your financial future? The outlook is brighter when you’re financially well. Financial wellness occurs when you’re able to save for goals, manage hardships, and enjoy a standard of living that’s right for you. That’s a real possibility if you have the tools to make it happen. In this workshop clergy and lay leaders will learn the skills needed to become financially well. Utilizing four connected steps, participants will explore their current financial situation and uncover ways to become more financially secure.
Pattie Christensen is the Vice President of Education & Wellness at the Church Pension Group. She has taught hundreds of Episcopal employees across the United States at workshops and conferences.
From Harry Potter to Hunger Games: Literature as a Tool for Justice
We are in a golden age of children’s literature. All you have to do is think Harry Potter or Hunger Games to realize that today’s young people are passionate about the books they choose to read and the characters, worlds, and ideas they meet in them. These stories shape their sense of justice and the questions their generation is asking of our culture. Explore the riches of new books for children and youth that enable us to engage young people and adults in conversations around issues of justice that include empathy, dignity for all, peace, and injustice.
Katherine Doar is an Episcopal priest who has 18 years of experience in parish ministry with children and youth at St. Francis Episcopal Church, San Jose, California. She also coordinates author visits to schools for Hicklebee’s, an independent children’s bookstore in the heart of Silicon Valley. This has given her the gift of listening to some of the best writers of this generation share their work with their audience and the opportunity to experiment with using these incredible stories in her ministry setting.
Fundraising for Christian Formation
We’re all familiar with the youth group car wash or bake sale, but what are the best means for raising resources for your programs? Whether you’re looking to fund the next short-term mission work or endow a speaker series, it’s important to have an effective strategy for reaching your goals. In this workshop, we’ll cover the three basic types of giving; effective principles for fundraising; and a simple overview of how Christian formation leaders can raise resources for ministry.
Episcopal Church Foundation partners with congregations, dioceses and other Episcopal Faith communities, empowering them to engage in strategic visioning and planning, develop effective lay and clergy leadership teams, and raise financial resources for ministry. Through ECF’s programs, lay and clergy leadership teams bring about transformation, renewal, and positive change in their communities, live out Christian stewardship, and develop new approaches to mission and ministry.
Grieving from the HeART
When a community or individual experiences loss, there is deep sadness, anger, resentment … and there is remembering, surprising laughter and joy, and deep love. All of these reactions are valid, real, and important. There is a story to be told––and it is in the rhythm of grief as we remember that the story soars. These stories can be shared in words, but also through the process of painting stories in which we can access our deepest emotions. Explore how a community or individual might use the act of creating art to be a life-giving resource in our journey with grief in your ministry setting.
Artist and writer Roger Hutchison is Director of Christian Formation and Parish Life at Palmer Memorial Episcopal Church in Houston, Texas. His books, including The Painting Table and My Favorite Color is Blue, Sometimes, explore the intersection of grief and art. www.rogerhutchison.org
Holistic Approaches to Transformational Ministry
This panel workshop will focus on how different congregations have developed new approaches to long-term sustainable ministry that have been transformational for individuals as well as the congregation itself. From over-arching ideas to specific ministry plans, panelists will talk about the ways they have created new ways of envisioning their formation ministries that won’t falter, even if they win the lottery.
Moderator: Bill Campbell is the Executive Director of Forma and lives in Alexandria, Virginia where he worships at St. Paul’s in Old Town.
Panelists: Matt Holcombe, Associate Rector at Christ Church Charlotte, North Carolina is overseeing a congregational program restructure to cultivate ministries that invite children, youth, and adults to explore, grow, and deepen their relationship with God;
Colette Potts, Director of Children’s Ministries at St. Barnabas, Falmouth, Massachusetts has developed “Love First,” an empathy-based children’s program that relies on intergenerational relationships and service projects to integrate children’s ministries into the life of the whole church; and
Roger Speer, Director of Student Ministries, Church of the Good Shepherd, Augusta, Georgia has developed the “Pilgrim’s Way” to include a holistic approach to Christian formation through purpose statements, methodology, communication strategies, and balancing program offerings.
How Can I Love a Racist? An Agape Workshop
Is it possible to talk without shame and vitriol about issues of racism and injustice within a spiritual and religious context? Explore “Agape” through highly experiential and non-linear experiences, as well as its implications for understanding the white/black relationship in the United States. Practice some techniques that you can take back to your church and community. Materials for other topics, including “white privilege,” and “black denial” will be offered as well.
Diana V. Gustafson leads Agape workshops, as well as others on race, in parishes, schools, and seminaries. She is involved in issues of racial justice and interracial and cross-cultural conversation within the church, spiritual formation and evangelism especially among urban millennials and spiritual-but-not-religious, as well as creative and experiential Christian liturgy and adult formation. Diana earned an MDiv at Virginia Theological Seminary in 2016 and now serves at St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church in Washington, DC.
I’m Not a Racist: Moving Your Congregation from Tolerance to Justice
Presiding Bishop Michael Curry and House of Deputies President the Rev. Gay Clark Jennings are inviting Episcopalians to study and commit to using “Becoming Beloved Community: The Episcopal Church’s Long-term Commitment to Racial Healing, Reconciliation and Justice” as a direct response to General Convention Resolution C019 (“Establish Response to Systemic Injustice”). Lay the groundwork here as you learn the basics to help support conversations in your parish surrounding racial justice such as: race as a social construct rather than a biological reality and the concept of privilege. Participate in three interactive activities to help understand racism, privilege, and how Scripture and our Baptismal Covenant mandate the work of reconciliation.
Cheryl Cementina realized early in her work as a family therapist that much of her work consisted of teaching parents new skills. Since then she has taken many opportunities to teach adults: at church, as an ESL instructor, preparing new Americans for the naturalization test, and currently as the Adult Formation Coordinator at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, Kansas City, MO. She is also a member of the Diocese of West Missouri’s Diversity & Reconciliation Commission.
Intergenerational Ministry: Why & How?
Explore the concept of intergenerational ministry and discover why gathering multiple generations together to learn, worship, serve, and build relationships is important for faith development and church growth. Beyond theory, this workshop will include time for evaluating your local context and planning practical ways to become more intergenerational through mission and service.
Kelly Kaufman is the Community Outreach Coordinator for GenOn Ministries, an ecumenical ministry that equips churches to build and nurture relationships of faith with God through Jesus Christ. GenOn is best known for its intergenerational offering LOGOS.
It’s All About Relationships: Youth + Church + Community
For a youth ministry to thrive, there must be strong relationships at its core acting as the backbone, fostering intentional building of community, which ultimately instills important Christian values that we wish for future generations. Explore the nuts and bolts of building a solid youth ministry program, including go-to-resources, best practices, and tested tips, that are all support relational ministry at their core.
Lauren Wainwright brings ten years of experience working in small and large church settings and building these lasting relationships. She is the Director of Youth Ministries at St. Michael & All Angels in Dallas, Texas. Lauren received her Certificate in Youth and Family Ministry from Forma in 2015.
Light and Peace: Liturgical Evangelism with Children at Risk
From 1995-2008 The Children’s Mission in New Haven, Connecticut offered a variety of programs, both sacred and secular, to serve urban children at risk. During the school year a weekly program (“Light and Peace”) centered on adaptations of the Daily Office, with storytelling and an art response for up to forty children aged 3 to 10. For the story portion, felt-board materials and stories (now known as Beulah Land) were used. Designed to be a ministry of evangelism––“to offer” (quite explicitly) the gifts of a traditional parish worshiping community to children at risk and their families and to invite them into the network of common identity, “shared story,” and mutual help that is the local church. Over its lifespan, the Children’s Mission led directly to more than twenty baptisms, mainly of children old enough to “speak for themselves” along with a few of their parents and some infants.
Gretchen Wolff Pritchard is the author and artist of The Sunday Paper, Beulah Land curriculum and materials, and Offering the Gospel to Children. She retired after 29 years of parish ministry including evangelism with urban children in poverty and is now an active parish volunteer at Grace & St. Peter’s in Hamden, Connecticut where she is involved in the oversight of adult education and the annual Christmas pageant.
Partnering with Parents
If we’re lucky, we see children at our churches about 40 hours a week annually. A parent has about 3,000! As faith formation people we need to partner with parents to make the most out of all the hours to build a life of faith. Parents are the first teachers of their children - the church has an amazing opportunity to support that mission! How do we better connect with parents, doing more than sending out a newsletter, but to actively partner with them to engage and equip them in their child’s faith journey? Leave with fresh ideas, whether your are in a small parish or large congregation, that will help you connect to parents of all ages, from babies to high school students.
Anne Louise Shelton is Director of Children’s Ministry at Advent UMC in Simpsonville, South Carolina. She is a United Methodist Certified Paraprofessional Christian Educator and has been active in Christian and Family ministry for over 20 years. At Advent, Anne has started family ministries designed to support moms of young children, new parents, special needs worship for families, activity days, day camps and VBS for a congregation of over 2000 members.
Practical Tools for Difficult Conversations
Conflict within congregations is as old as the early Church. Here in the 21st century, it's never been more important to manage interpersonal conflict in productive ways. Differences of opinion within congregations aren't to be feared; in fact, they can spark creativity and strengthen relationships when handled in healthy ways. This engaging and experiential workshop will give participants practical tools for having difficult conversations about topics that matter.
Cathy Ode has an M.Ed in Counseling, a certificate in mediation, and advanced training in marriage and family therapy. With over two decades of lay ministry experience, she has worked with children, youth, adults, and congregations in various roles including family ministry, volunteer management, crisis intervention, and faith-based consulting. She currently serves as Director of Faith Formation and Community Engagement with St. Mary's Episcopal Church in Barnstable, MA on Cape Cod. www.cathyode.com
Respecting the Dignity of All: Updated Policies for the Protection of Children, Youth & Vulnerable Adults
Following Jesus into loving, liberating, and life-giving relationships requires an awareness of power, vulnerability, and intimacy in all our relationships, particularly ministerial relationships, where we often find ourselves in relationship with those who are vulnerable, and/or those who have been wounded by others. Be the first to explore the 2017 updated “Model Polices for the Protection of Children, Youth, and Vulnerable Adults” for the Episcopal Church, including social media, mission trips, pilgrimages, and camp & conference center programs, as well as the experiences of LGBTQ individuals. Created by the Task Force to Update Sexual Misconduct Polices mandated by General Convention Resolution A073 (2015), these policies are grounded in theology and serve as the foundation for newly envisioned safe church training.
Robin Hammeal-Urban serves as the chair of the Task Force to develop these new policies and currently serves as Canon for Mission Integrity & Training in the Episcopal Church in Connecticut, where she has overseen safe church practices since 2000.
Eric Travis, a member of the Task Force, has spent decades ministering with youth and young adults, and currently serves as Missioner for Youth and Young Adults in the Diocese of Michigan.
Raising a Child of Faith
What would make a child, when asked what’s the most important thing about his life, respond, “God”? Hearing her son, then 9, answer this way during a resiliency program offered in the wake of the Sandy Hook shootings, was a surprise to Sophfronia. Although they attend church, she had no idea how much his faith had sustained him through the tragedy. Using the four keys she identified that contributed to his faith development, participants will discuss and brainstorm creative ways to help children develop a more personal relationship with God at church and home.
Sophronia Scott is an author of fiction and nonfiction, also currently serving as the chair of the Christian Formation committee at Trinity Episcopal Church in Newtown, Connecticut. She has been intentionally involved in faith formation for the past five years as a church school teacher and confirmation mentor/leader.
Righting a Racial Wrong in a Small Parish
How did the recent uncovering of serious Jim Crow-era discrimination against the congregation’s only black member (1900-1959) turn into a special service of repentance in 2015? A former priest-in-charge and a vestry member at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Clay Center, Kansas will share their experience of working together to right this racial wrong. They will offer any changes the initial effort had (or didn’t) among members of the congregation. Do you seek to respond to the call to address past racial injustice in your congregation? In learning about St. Paul’s efforts, both the successes and disappointments, perhaps you can begin similar efforts to repent and reconcile in your own congregation. Time will be taken to share the work being done in participants’ churches.
James (Jim) R. Beck is a senior professor of counseling (retired) at Denver Seminary in Littleton, CO. After retirement in 2006, Jim and his wife Ginny moved to rural Clay County, Kansas, where Ginny has deep roots. They joyfully became Episcopalians in 2014. Jim is trained and has worked as an ordained pastor and licensed clinical psychologist. Have You Seen My Spirit is his second book written during retirement years.
The Reverend S. Lavonne Seifert served as Priest-in-Charge at St. Paul’s and currently is Associate Rector of Grace Church in Providence, Rhode Island. Before her call to ordained ministry, Lavonne enjoyed a long career in the field of corporate communications and public relations in the metro Kansas City area. She and her husband, Dave, now reside in Uxbridge, MA, with their energetic English springer spaniel, and are happy to be living in Massachusetts near their daughter, son-in-law and four grandchildren.
Rockin’ Toddlers in the Neighborhood
Rockin’ Toddlers is a creative way to reach out to neighborhood families in a fun, non-threatening way. Learn how to build relationships and extend invitations to church events that will be happily received. During the workshop, you will be given concrete ideas and tools: how to evaluate the strength of your church and leverage those strengths to reach young families in your community; how to market your programs via social media; and the framework for Rockin’ Toddlers (including songs and activities). Beyond Rockin’ Toddlers we’ll look at strategies to use during the summer – the one time of year your neighborhood families are less programmed and looking for fun things to do.
Lisa Scott Jones is the Children & Young Family Minister at St. Peter’s in Del Mar, California. Professionally, Lisa has a rich background in community outreach, membership development, and social media management. Lisa has worked for the YMCA, Girl Scouts, UC San Diego and several churches (Episcopal, United Church of Christ and Presbyterian).
Sacred Space in Unlikely Places
To those who participate in the “Breaking Bread” community, worship means breaking boundaries of who feels welcome, where church happens, understanding of membership, liturgy as participatory rather than performance, music that is shared, and sacraments given freely rather than hoarded by a select few. Based on an evangelism course taught in the summer of 2017 in the Diocese of Iowa that focused specifically on public worship as evangelism and creating loving community, participants will have an opportunity to begin to draft a liturgy and share in the Eucharist. Leave feeling equipped to start innovative worship opportunities in your own community with lots of resources and connections for support.
Lydia Bucklin currently serves as the Young Adult Missioner for the Diocese of Iowa and is co-creator of “Breaking Bread.” Lydia is a priest and mom to two young children. Her ministry passions include baptismal ministry, evangelism, and radical inclusion. Prior to her current diocesan role, Lydia served as Missioner for Children and Youth in Iowa since 2007.
Lizzie Gillman is a postulant for priesthood in the Diocese of Iowa and attends Bexley Seabury. She has two young daughters and is active at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Des Moines in the areas of hospitality, lifelong formation, new member welcome, and evangelism. Lizzie is co-creator of “Breaking Bread” and also started a popular weekly music class ministry at St. Andrew’s for toddlers and caregivers.
Seeking Justice: Formed by Prophets and by Jesus
In Isaiah 61 we hear, “The spirit of the Lord God is upon me…” As our call to prophetic ministry is rooted in our biblical tradition, this workshop will focus on the prophets and Jesus’ ministry in terms of Isaiah’s vision of deliverance. How can we tell these stories with a focus on justice and God’s mission of restoration and reconciliation with older children, youth, and adults in today’s world? Using Godly Play we will experience these stories and discuss how to design a Bible study series (perhaps for Lent) for adults focused on the prophets, Jesus’ prophetic ministry, and our call to follow in Christ’s footsteps in words and action.
Rosemary Beales is a 20+ years practitioner and trainer in Godly Play® and has been the chaplain to 400 children for 10 years at the Lower School at St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes School in Alexandria, Virginia. With a particular interest in equipping parents as their children’s primary spiritual guides, she is also priest associate at St. Paul’s in Alexandria.
Doing Transformational Short Term Mission Work
This panel will bring together a wide range of experienced mission trip planners in a discussion about the purpose of short term mission experiences, the practical planning, and the arc of discernment that accompanies all such transformational work.
Moderator: Bronwyn Clark Skov is the Director for Formation, Youth, and Young Adult Ministries on the Presiding Bishop’s Staff.
Panelists: L. Sue von Rautenkranz is the Archdeacon for the Diocese of Washington and coordinator of Potomac River Area Youth, a youth collaboration with three congregations in the Diocese of Washington. She looks at mission opportunities through the lens of the charity to mission continuum with spiritual development for all ages;
Tina Clark leads “YES Colorado!” (Young Episcopalians in Service) which is a highly successful mission trip model of combined youth groups in a diocesan model of service. She is the Family Minister at St Barnabas Episcopal Church in Denver; and
Mary Carter Greene, a priest and Director of Children, Youth, and Family Ministry at Grace Cathedral, San Francisco, California, has participated in the creation of mission trips from West Coast to Midwest to East Coast that engage youth in understanding and building up social justice as a core value for mission and service.
Congregational leadership requires non-anxious, self-differentiated, playful individuals who are connected to their membership but not swayed by emotions. We aren’t going to be better leaders by trying harder or being smarter, instead we must re-think how we engage relationships, focusing on our own self. Explore the principles of leadership through the lens of Dr. Rabbi Edwin Friedman’s theories of congregational leadership and Dr. Murray Bowen’s “Family Systems Theory”. Participants will receive the language and tools for non-anxious leadership and the opportunity to explore those tools through small group work with Friedman’s Fables, parables that playfully allow for exploration of dilemmas, while offering questions to think about future leadership.
Missy Morain is the Director of Christian Formation for Children and Families at the Parish of St. Matthew’s, Pacific Palisades, California where she engages in daily ministry at St. Matthew’s Day School, Day Camp, and Boy Scout troop, as well as parents, teachers, parishioners, and ministers.
Stations of the Cross: A Sensory and Experiential Walk
There is a profound difference in walking the Stations of the Cross and experiencing the Stations of the Cross. Imagine a liturgy that begins with a burlap bag, symbolizing the roughness of the Holy Week story and then proceeding to collect objects at each station, noting the increasing weight of the story as you walk toward the cross with Jesus. Discover the significance and experience of walking the Stations of the Cross in a way that engages all of the senses, leaving with practical information including a list of supplies and suggestions, ideas for how you can implement such a program in your respective parish context, and a sense of how the Stations of the Cross and the stories of Holy Week shape conversations around baptismal life, cross, and resurrection.
Angela Compton Nelson is the Minister for Christian Education at Church of the Holy Family in Chapel Hill, North Carolina where she works with babies up to high school age youth. She received her M.Div from Duke Divinity and is an Ordained Elder in the Church of the Nazarene.
Story Telling: Connecting Our Story with God’s Story to Build Up the Body of Christ
Come explore how our own stories connect with the Divine Story, and how these connections provide the fuel for us to clarify our values, articulate our vision and ignite our calling. This experiential workshop explores the intersection of storytelling, goal-setting and vision sharing. Through games, discussion, individual reflection, and group process you will identify the stories that make you who you are, and remind you of what really matters in your daily life and vocation. Participants will take home tools and tips to continue the storytelling, goal setting, and vision setting in your life and ministry context.
Kate Gillooly is Director of Congregational Development at Heights Christian Church, Director of the Deacon Formation Program for the Diocese of Ohio, and a member of the national Training Network for Education for Ministry. She lives in Cleveland, Ohio with her husband and two sons, and is currently working toward her Doctor of Ministry in Congregational Development through Bexley Seabury Seminary.
The (Pop) Culture of Christianity
Today’s teenageres are bombarded with popular culture all day, every day. Memes, gifs, music, and video are ever present on their mobile devices. Most of this digital noise is seen by adults as a distraction from what teens should be investing in: relationships, school, and faith. Learn how adults working in youth and family ministry can use popular culture to invigorate teens to be renegades for Christ, subverting the norm in their daily lives and friendship groups to live lives of love and purpose. Yes, pop culture and scripture do relate and can have real meaning in teens’ lives.
Brad Gough is the Minister for Families at Church of the Redeemer in Cincinnati, Ohio. He also makes amazing whiteboard animation videos as a means to engage younger teens and their parents.
Transformative Communities: Teaching Asset Based Community Development
While the Gospel calls us to love our neighbor and to participate fully in the active service of those on the margins of society, Jesus also teaches us that the capacity for change exists in each and every one of us. Our role is to inspire and educate people to preach the Gospel not about what communities lack, but about what they possess, and to empower communities deemed voiceless and helpless to speak up, organize, and feel empowered to practice the gospel themselves from within their own communities from within. This workshop will present resources for facilitating the ABCD approach of transformative community.
Chad Brinkman is the Program Officer, Engagement for Episcopal Relief & Development, where he works to engage, educate and mobilize local communities, affinity groups and the larger Episcopal Church in the work of Episcopal Relief & Development. He is the father of a fat ginger cat and a hilarious baby boy, husband to a beautiful and talented redhead, and an avid cook - skilled in the clandestine art of vegetable butchery. Chad has been on the staff at Episcopal Relief & Development since 2010.
Using Language to Create (and Maintain) Safe Space
This panel discussion will focus on why language is so vital to extending our welcome to LGBTQ+ folks of all ages. How can our church become an ally and gain confidence in the changing nature of language we use for all of God’s people? THIS CAN BE SHORT AND SUPPLEMENTED BY PANELIST BIOS
Moderator: Matthew Welsch is a postulant for Holy Orders in the Diocese of Virginia where he is the Director of Children’s Ministries and Staff Lead for the LGBTQ Affinity Group at Christ Church in Alexandria, Virginia.
Panelists: Eric Travis and others
What? When? Why? How? Creating a Christian Formation Tool Box
Every Christian educator––both lay and clergy––need to have some basic tools to tap into on a regular basis for planning and implementing a formation program for children, youth, and/or adults. This workshop will provide tools for answering the questions: What curriculum should I be looking at? How to I engage and support volunteers? How do I plan out the year? What are the core documents I need to know about as a formation leader in the Episcopal Church? What about that kid that always acts out? (Add your own question here.)
Sharon Ely Pearson has been involved in Christian formation with all ages for 40 years and has literally written the book on these questions based on her experience. She has lived through it all––locally and nationally––and now serves as an editor and the Christian Formation Specialist for Church Publishing Incorporated. She volunteers at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church in Wilton, Connecticut and lives neighboring Norwalk.
Women of Color Rise Up
Women of color in the church have played a particular leadership role in proclaiming that the kin-dom of God is here. This workshop seeks to provide a theological/scriptural framework and a praxis that draws connections between the women who followed God’s call in the Hebrew Bible, the women who helped lead the Jesus Movement in the first century, and the women of color of this generation who continue their tradition. Participants will leave with a new understanding of women in the Bible, an introduction to womanist, mujerista, and Asian feminist theologians, and practical ways to implement these theological frameworks in their daily ministry.
Maria Elizabeth Munoz is a Chicana activist priest who has served churches in Los Angeles and Chicago. Liz is Godly Play teacher and trainer who interweaves the principles of Godly Play in the teaching and spiritual formation of saints of all ages. She recently moved to the Bay Area where she is completing her DMin thesis on bilingual preaching and working on planting Godly Play en Español programs in the surrounding areas.
Youth Ministry & Restorative Practices
The skills used in mediation and restorative practices intersect and overlap with those of youth ministry. This workshop will how to handle conflict when it arises in a youth group setting by having a conversation about conflict and the power of listening and communication. We’ll start our conversation by talking about conflict, the power of listening and communication and then move to a traditional values circle, so that participants can experience these tools.
Mia Lisa Millares serves as the Children’s and Youth Ministry Coordinator at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in St. Paul, Minnesota and is the Program Director at Community Mediation & Restorative Services. She has a J.D. from William Mitchell College of Law, an Ed.M in Peace Education from Columbia University and has worked as an elementary school teacher, a family lawyer, a mediator, and as a restorative practitioner and trainer in both of those areas.