Practicing The Way: The Catechumenate
Join us on Wednesday nights!
The Catechumenate is for those who have never been part of a church, those who are returning to church after a long absence, or those who have belonged to another faith tradition. It is the heart of our formation process for adults, an exploration of what it means to be a Christian in the Anglican tradition.
"Catechumenate" may be hard to pronounce (kat-uh-KEW-meh-nut) and harder to spell. The name comes from Greek words meaning "teach by telling" and "learn by hearing" and ultimately from the word "echo."
Why do we use this difficult name for a class intended for newcomers? Because "catechumenate" has been used to describe this process since the earliest days of the Church. Our making the effort to learn and to use the name connects us to our fellow Christians more than 17 centuries ago.
It is intended for adults who are new to the church and have never been baptized, for those who have been members of another Christian community, or for those who are already Episcopalians but would like to learn more about Saint John's. Sometimes those who have been members of this particular church for many years take the class as a refresher or as part of a reevaluation of their faith lives.
The evening class includes a simple supper and a brief time of prayer or worship. During dinner and class time, participants sit at round tables with four to six others, including one or two parishioners who act as table leaders or mentors. Dinner conversations are largely unstructured but also include time to focus on a topic. As dinner draws to a close, tables generally sum up their dinner conversations in order to report to the group as a whole. After a break in the chapel for prayer, the class gathers again for a presentation, followed by table conversation.
Throughout the year, the class will be asked to read portions of the Scripture, or to practice prayer discipline at home. During the season of Lent, tables also take part in simple service projects outside of class. Suggested readings are optional.
The class meets Wednesday evenings. Even if you have not come before to previous nights, please join us! There is no cost to participate. Child care is open from 4:00 – 9:00 pm on Wednesdays in the Nursery Room for all ages. For more information, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Class registration for Fall 2013 Catechumenate will open in late Summer 2013