TREC 3: Culture and Leadership launches today

We’re pleased to launch our third course in the TREC series (which stands for Task-Force for Reimagining the Episcopal Church) today, and this is one that will get us all thinking about God’s dream for God’s church. When we think of the Church as God’s family, including all its members –and indeed relying on all its members — we also need to think of how well we are following Jesus’ example of listening to and celebrating the dignity of every human being.trec

In six lessons, various thought leaders in the Episcopal Church urge us to explore the ideas of wholeness, balance, inclusion, and relationality. Stephanie Spellers, who teaches at General Theological Seminary, presents the idea of the Gospel Flower and explores the role of women in church leadership. Lisa Fortunato, who leads a congregation in Boston, invites us to consider how minority communities such as Latinos are made to feel by well-meant inclusion practices. Bradley Hauff, who leads a congregation in Philadelphia, explains how Native American theology can enrich our understanding of leadership. Author and teacher Eric Law offers suggestions for creating and sustaining relevant communities. Isaiah Brokenleg, a theology student, invites us to more thoughtfully and reverently consider our differences and the power of listening.

What’s exciting about TREC is that part of its commission is to “gather information and ideas from congregations, dioceses and provinces, and other interested individuals and organizations, including those not often heard from; engage other resources to provide information and guidance, and … invite all these constituencies to be joined in prayer as they engage in this common work of discernment.” Taking part in these ChurchNext courses is one way to engage in this process. (See our earlier blog post here.)

Here are links to all three courses 1) Reimagining Church Leadership, 2) Mission and Leadership, 3) Culture and Leadership

All who are interested in church leadership or in the Episcopal Church will find much of interest and use in these courses. Click here for more information or to register.

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The Big Class with Cornel West: “Called to Common Good: Economic Inequality and What Christians Can Do About It”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Cornel West to Teach Free, Online Course

“CALLED TO COMMON GOOD:

ECONOMIC INEQUALITY AND WHAT CHRISTIANS CAN DO ABOUT IT”


Open to anyone in the world between January 11-21

December 29, 2014, BLOOMFIELD  HILLS, MI – Cornel West, prominent intellectual, author, and cultural critic, will teach an online course on economic inequality that is open to all, from January 11-21.  This is an opportunity to learn about one of the most pervasive problems in the U.S. from one of the most thought-provoking teachers of our time.west

 

The online course derives from the Trinity Institute’s 2015 “Creating Common Good” conference on economic inequality and is offered through ChurchNext, a leader in online Christian education. The class, a series of video lectures and discussions, can be taken anytime between January 11-21. No special software is required. It will take an average learner about 45 minutes to complete. Registration is free and open worldwide beginning today. (Click here for more information or to register.)

 

Dr. Cornel West has often spoken out for justice and equality, specifically what American Christians are called to do about it; the Trinity Institute, a program of Trinity Wall Street, is an annual conference, now in its 44th year, aimed at gathering clerics and intellectuals to discuss matters of deep significance. The upcoming 2015 conference focuses on the often-overwhelming issue of economic inequality. (Click here for more information on the Trinity Institute.)

 

Throughout Called to Common Good, participants are encouraged to think about and discuss economic injustice and moral responsibility. Dr. West explores the problem of inequality, notions of public and private justice, and how communities can effect change. He contends that “no matter how extreme inequalities are, we’ve always got a common humanity,” which is why, he adds, “I cannot be an optimist but I am a prisoner of hope.” During the class, representatives from Trinity Institute will be on hand to respond to discussions.

 

Online learning hub ChurchNext has partnered with Trinity Institute to present Dr. West’s course as well as four other previously-released courses taught by Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, educational advocate Nicole Baker Fulgham, evangelical blogger Rachel Held Evans, and Julio Murray, Episcopal bishop of Panama.

 

Called to Common Good is a worldwide online learning course for all who are interested in social justice and the Christian faith and is free, thanks to the support of Trinity Institute, The Episcopal Church, and Forward Movement.

 

Trinity Institute is an annual conference, now in its 44th year, that equips clergy and laypersons for imaginative and catalytic leadership. The conference is sponsored by Trinity Wall Street, an Episcopal parish in New York City. Trinity Institute takes place at Trinity Church in New York City and is streamed at Partner Sites (which are often churches and seminaries) throughout the world. For more information, visit https://www.trinitywallstreet.org/trinity-institute/2015/what’s-ti2015

 

ChurchNext creates online Christian learning experiences that shape disciples. Along with our partners we are devoted to helping people grow in their Christian faith, improve their lives, and better the world. Learn more at http://churchnext.tv

 

Latest Course In Our Introducing the Book of Common Prayer Series: Praying the Collects with Ellen Wondra

When the disciples asked Jesus how to pray, they got the Our Father. When people asked the assemblers of The Book of Common Prayer how to pray, they got something nearly as memorable: the Collects.  We are excited to launch the latest course in our series on The Book of Common Prayer:  Praying the Collects is a thoughtful introduction to a meaningful facet of prayer life.

Collects are short prayers and a distinctive part of Anglican worship, liturgy, and theology.  Episcopalians have long subscribed to the conviction of lex orandi, lex credendi or “praying shapes believing.” This means that the way we pray carries great significance.

In this class, scholar, writer, and seminary dean Ellen Wondra helps us understand the wondraCollects, delving into the structure and theology behind these amazing prayers. We will explore:

  • The Purpose and Structure of Collects
  • The Collect of the Day – Part I
  • The Collect of the Day – Part II
  • A Symphony of Collects

Click here to learn more or to register.

This course is the sixth in an 8-part series called Introducing the Book of Common Prayer. The next two courses will be launching in the coming weeks, so stay tuned. This series is brought to us by our partners at Bexley Seabury Federation, an Episcopal center for learning and development. Bexley offers online and in-person classes for everyone at its Chicago, IL and Columbus, OH campuses. For more information visit www.bexleyseabury.edu.

Latest in our Introducing The Book of Common Prayer series: Creeds and Commitments

In Creeds and Commitments, the Rev. Dr. Jason Fout invites us to think a bit about the beliefs and doubts that inform our Church and our own faith journeys.  What is a creed? Why do statements of faith matter? How and where do we find these in the Book of Common Prayer?

Jason begins by asking us to consider what we mean by belief and why it matters; he then delves into the history of the Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds as well as some other key fouthistorical commitments.  He closes by inviting us to examine what we believe about belief itself; he reminds us that belief is a matter of commitment and, like any other significant commitment, necessarily involves doubt.  These doubts and beliefs are what make our Church — and our very selves — what they are today.

This course is the fifth in an 8-part series called Introducing the Book of Common Prayer. The next three courses will be launching in the coming weeks, so stay tuned. This series is brought to us by our partners at Bexley Seabury Federation, an Episcopal center for learning and development. Bexley offers online and in-person classes for everyone at its Chicago, IL and Columbus, OH campuses. For more information visit www.bexleyseabury.edu.

New Course: Making Sense of the Cross Part III: Theories of the Cross, with David Lose

davidloseWhatever we say about the cross, we are also saying about God. So what does the cross mean? What can it tell us about God? How can it help us approach, understand, and know God better? In Part III of this three-part series, David Lose introduces us to the three most popular theories, or ways of understanding the Cross, that Christians have turned to through the years.

This online course is based on the Augsburg Fortress DVD-based curriculum of the same name, so if you’ve experienced that teaching, this will be very familiar.

In this six-part class Dr. Lose walks us through:

  •  The Ancient Theory Explained
  • The Ancient Theory Evaluated
  • The Substitution Theory Explained
  • The Substitution Theory Evaluated
  • The Love Theory Explained
  • The Love Theory Evaluated

This is a pre-recorded online course that will take an average learner about an hour to work through. You can pause the class at any time and return to pick it up later.

This is the third of three courses in the the online learning version of Making Sense of the Cross series. Part One is called Experience and the Cross. Part Two is called The Bible and the Cross. None of these videos is downloadable, however there are text files included with the classes that you may download.

If you would rather purchase the 6-part Augsburg Fortress DVD-based series, click here.

For more information and to register, click here: Making Sense of the Cross III:  Theories of the Cross

 

New Course: Who is Jesus?

Jason FoutJesus wrote no books, built no empires, nor left us so much as an image of himself – yet his life has impacted the world more than any other.

Who is Jesus? Ask ten people and you may get 11 answers… In this thought-provoking course theologian and seminary instructor Jason Fout persuasively argues that the best way to begin is through the resurrection.

Who was this man and how can we best get to know him?

In this course author, priest, and teacher Jason Fout suggests four helpful lenses in which to view Christ:

  • Resurrection
  • Teaching
  • Atonement
  • Incarnation

This class is appropriate for people who are new to the Christian faith as well as seasoned believers who are looking for new insights into this engaging topic.

Find out more about this course, Who is Jesus.