Formation for Ministry
This page is dedicated to the ongoing requirements, recommendations, and trainings that help those in leadership positions to create safe, welcoming, and thoughtful spaces for Christian Formation.
Whole and Healthy Church
Whole & Healthy Church is the Diocese of California’s comprehensive policy of guidelines and procedures that enables us to proactively work to protect our beloved community. These policies are centered around protecting bodies and souls, hearts and minds. All those in leadership no matter the age they work with should take the Whole and Healthy Church training in person or online. This site also contains policies, sample forms, reporting concerns, resources, and much more.
From time to time the diocese will schedule a specific antiracism training in the diocese. However, this is work that is ongoing and needs to be addressed by everyone in the church. Here are some recommended programs
Sacred Ground is a free film and readings-based dialogue series on race, grounded in faith. Small groups are invited to walk through chapters of America’s history of race and racism, while weaving in threads of family story, economic class, and political and regional identity. The 10-part series is built around a powerful online curriculum of documentary films and readings that focus on Indigenous, Black, Latino, and Asian/Pacific American histories as they intersect with European American histories. Sacred Ground is a wonderful program to help facilitate conversations around faith and race. The Episcopal Church provides a lot of great supporting information and resources to go with the program itself. Please contact Amy Cook (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you would like help getting started.
Becoming Beloved Community: Understanding Systemic Racism
ChurchNext, an offering of Forward Movement, offers an online curriculum, “Becoming Beloved Community: Understanding Systemic Racism” which is designed for study over a period of six weeks. The curriculum explores how systemic racism has been integrated into U.S. culture from the very beginning, as well as the Episcopal Church’s history of active participation in systemic racism. The curriculum offers guidance on learning from this history and building toward what the Episcopal Church’s Presiding Bishop Michael Curry describes as “the Beloved Community of God.”
Dismantling Racism Trainings
The Absalom Jones Episcopal Center for Racial Healing, a ministry of the Episcopal Church and the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta, offer regular, online Dismantling Racism trainings. This site also offers a vast array of resources including a curriculum for youth, a podcast, videos of Dr. Catherine Meeks and others, and opportunities for churches to join in this work.
Classes offered through Pathways for Baptismal Living
Bexley-Seabury, an online seminary of the Episcopal Church, offers several great courses each year. There is a cost for these programs, but they fulfill canonical requirements for antiracism training in a transformational and robust program.
- Becoming Beloved Community: Racial Reconciliation and Anti-Racism Training is offered by trainers from The Kaleidoscope Institute which is well known for facilitating leadership and diversity training in churches. This 6-week course is very appropriate for those in ordained ministry, in the ordination process, or for lay leaders who desire a robust training. A second course is offered after this one to become a Facilitator for anti-racism training.
- Exploring the Doctrine of Discovery – this training is offered a couple of times each year, and more opportunities are being added. Participants will learn about Doctrine of Discovery, how it was justified by Christian church leaders, what happened to the people it touched, how it continues to affect Indigenous people worldwide today.
Further Education for Lay Leaders
There are many accessible trainings available for Lay Leaders who want to further their knowledge.
- The CALL program of online learning at CDSP, Church Divinity School of the Pacific, in Berkeley, CA offers several online courses through its CALL program. These programs vary each quarter but provide wonderful continuing education for lay people who wish to deepen their understanding or gain new training. Keep watching for new their new offerings.
- Pathways for Baptismal Living at Bexley-Seabury, an online Episcopal Seminary, offers programs for personal enrichment, lay licensing in the Episcopal Church, or to deepen the fundamentals of faith.
- The Center for Lifelong Learning at Virginia Seminary offers resources, online classes, and resources for those working in the field of Christian Formation and Discipleship.