Spiritual Formation for the Next Generation
June 1, 2017
“A uniquely Anglican program where the Holy Spirit can move to personally transform participants to more actively engage in Christian life and mission.”
For the past two years, a small group of lay volunteers and clergy has been meeting to bring to reality a pilot project for a new spiritual renewal program for our diocese. The need for such a program was confirmed by survey feedback from members of the 2015 Synod and from past participants in the Diocesan Cursillo movement during the 1990s. The new program has been designed to address a recognized “gap” in lay spiritual renewal programming across our diocese. The target audience is the “next generation” of Anglicans; that is, people who exhibit a readiness or show the potential to take another step in their faith development. The major program goals are:
- To engage the energy, creativity and commitment of the next generation of Anglicans and prepare them to be change catalysts in the communities where God has placed them,
- To support participants to deepen and mature their Christian faith in order to enact the great commission in their daily lives and in the life of their parish/community.
With a grant from the Anglican Foundation of Canada and along with funding from the Anglican Church of Canada and our own Anglican Initiatives Fund, we were pleased to be able to hire Drs. Brad and Kara Pickens (www.farmhousemission.org) to develop the curriculum and learning materials for the new program. Members of Trinity Episcopal Church in Bloomington, Indiana, Brad and Kara have led spiritual retreats since 2002 at The Farmhouse Mission, located on their seventh generation family farm. There they have welcomed an ecumenical group of women and men from all over the world and all walks of life to practice prayer and to sit, rest, and commune with God and with others. They envision the spiritual renewal project with the diocese of New Westminster as an opportunity for individuals to grow in their faith and understanding, while building supportive relationships with other believers, and increasing their desire for missional living in their communities. The weekend retreat will incorporate discussion, teaching, fellowship, rest, and worship through prayer and music, along with opportunities for creative expression through art, film, and hands-on projects as ways of exploring how the spiritual may become part of one's daily life.
In order to assist in the development of this exciting new opportunity to grow in faith, the Spiritual Formation for the Next Generation team is inviting folks from our diocese to participate in one of three pilot weekend retreats:
- October 13-15 or October 27-29, 2017 at Camp Elphinstone in Gibsons
- February 23-25, 2018 at Loon Lake in Maple Ridge.
The two-night retreat weekend includes shared accommodation, all meals and materials. The majority of the cost is paid however each participant is asked to contribute $30.
Interested in learning more or taking part in this unique and important opportunity? Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone 604.684.6306