Diocese of North Carolina Selected to Take Part in New "The Preaching Congregation" Pilot Program
The Diocese of North Carolina has been invited to participate in a new program by the Episcopal Preaching Foundation (EPF) : “The Preaching Congregation.” This pilot program, funded in part by a grant from the Lilly Endowment, offers a rich formation experience for both preachers and members of the church, as you spend time together in lectionary bible study in preparation for a sermon, and group reflection on the sermon afterwards. The diocese is looking for a group of churches to participate in this project.
"We are very excited to be working with the Episcopal Preaching Foundation on another pilot program," said Jenny Beaumont, diocesan missioner for adult and lifelong formation. "Participants and churches will gain rich formation, study and reflection resources. Preachers will gain pivotal preparation and feedback while inviting laity to connect worship and liturgy. Churches will engage the laity in formation and ministry, deepening their connection to the parish and their faith. There are so many opportunities to deepen relationships in this program - not only between members of congregations, but between participants and God."
- an introduction to preaching by the Rev. Dr. Micah Jackson, president of Bexley-Seabury Seminary
- "Introduction to Exegesis" by the Rev. Dr Shauna Hannan, professor of homiletics, Pacific Lutheran Theologal Seminary
- "Preaching from the Old Testament" by Dr. Kay Apigo, assistant professor of OT at Bexley-Seabury Seminary
- "Preaching from the New Testament" by Dr Peter Ajer, assistant professor of NT at Bexley-Seabury Seminary
- Additional exegesis techniques by the Rev. Dr Shauna Hannan
- "Preaching to Feedback" by the Rev. Dr Stephen Smith, coordinator of EPF’s Lay Preaching Training
The training sessions are followed by ten weeks of gathering as small group “Lectionary Teams” with the preacher (or preachers) to reflect on the prior week’s sermon and discuss the readings for the coming week. The weeks do not need to be consecutive, depending on the needs of the preacher(s) and congregation. Program leaders can work with each participating congregation on a schedule for the sessions. As participants in this pilot project, EPF will conduct interviews and surveys to get a picture of how this is working in the congregations.
Applications are now being accepted; the deadline to apply is September 8.