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

 

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New course: Preparing For Infant and Children’s Baptism in the Episcopal Church

This latest course on baptism by the Rev. Canon Anne Kitch is a wonderful exploration of what baptism of young children can and should mean for us adults. Preparing For Infant and Children’s Baptism isn’t just a wonderful primer on how to prepare for having a child baptized, it’s also an insightful reminder that baptism isn’t just a moment in time. Rather, it’s a life lived in Christ, one which we’re promising to support when we witness someone’s baptism.

In five lessons, Anne explains what sorts of promises we adults make, what they mean, how to live them out in our daily lives, and why this all matters. She offers concrete wisdom and tips on how to live out the covenant we make for ourselves and on behalf of our children. This course is a kitchwonderful introduction for parents and godparents; it’s also an invaluable reminder to all members of a church community who are responsible for helping to bring children up into the Christian faith and life, and into the full stature of Christ. Click here for more information or to register.

The Rev. Canon Anne E. Kitch is a mother and an Episcopal priest serving in the Diocese of Bethlehem, PA. She is the author of several books including The Anglican Family Prayer Book.

 

 

New course: Adult Baptism in the Episcopal Church with Anne Kitch

This latest course in our series on baptism offers an in-depth look not only at Adult Baptism in the Episcopal Church but also on the ways that baptism is an action and that the baptized life is an ongoing journey of deepening relationship with Jesus Christ.  So whether we were baptized years ago as tiny babies or recently as adults, we are all called to regularly read, pray, and inwardly digest our Baptismal Covenant and to work towards living out its promises in our daily lives. kitch

In this course, Anne Kitch explains how baptism in the Episcopal Church is meant just as much for adults as it is for infants.  She helps us explore, remember, and live out the promises we make in our Baptismal Covenants.  She shows us how baptism is an action, one that is ongoing. She reminds us of our calling as baptized Christians to love, to serve, to worship, to offer ourselves as ministers. In addition to being a rich introduction to baptism for adults, this course is a wonderful reminder of the importance — in our daily lives — of our own baptisms. Click here to register or for more information.

The Rev. Canon Anne E. Kitch is a mother and an Episcopal priest serving in the Diocese of Bethlehem, PA. She is the author of several books including The Anglican Family Prayer Book.

 

New course: Introducing Christian Baptism with Anne Kitch

You can’t know everything before you take the plunge. There is more grace and love to be had than you ever imagined. ~Anne Kitch

As we learn in this course, Introducing Christian Baptism, when we are born again by water and words, we are not just granted some one-time ticket to Heaven. Rather, we are entering into a new community, becoming part of the Body of Christ, which is the Church, and we are committing to becoming — day by day — more of who God intends us to be.  We are promising to uphold our faith through thought, word, and deed.  We enter into a sacred covenant with a loving God, one that can never be dissolved, one to which God will always be faithful. kitch

This course offers a wonderful introduction to baptism, especially within the Episcopal Church, but it’s also a fabulous refresher for those of us who have already been baptized.  Anne Kitch walks us through a brief history of baptism, defines what baptism as a sacred covenant is, and then helps us understand what baptism means to us and what we give in return. Baptism grants us belonging in the most wonderful community on earth and is something we don’t do alone. Click here for more information or to register.

And stay tuned for more courses by Anne Kitch on the sacrament of baptism launching this month: Adult Baptism in the Episcopal Church and Preparing for Infant and Children’s Baptism.

The Rev. Canon Anne E. Kitch is a mother and an Episcopal priest serving in the Diocese of Bethlehem, PA. She is the author of several books including The Anglican Family Prayer Book.

New course: Introducing the Altar Guild

Introducing the Altar Guild is not just an introduction to this vital ministry; it’s a stunning reminder that this often-invisible group makes the worship service beautiful, seamless, even possible: though we may take it for granted, the altar guild makes sure that the altar, the priest, the celebrant, and the Eucharistic elements are present for hinchmanworship and in ideal form.  Serving on an altar guild is a wonderful way to live out, in service, your awareness of God’s love.

In this course Hobey Hinchman, former president of the National Altar Guild Association, walks us through the duties, expectations, origins, and best practices for altar guilds.  Whether you’re a seasoned guild member, a newbie, discerning a call, or perhaps merely interested in learning more about this long-standing ministry, you’ll find much of interest in this course.

Click here to register or for more information.

New course: Introduction to Church Marketing

Some folks may raise their eyebrows at the title of our latest course, Introduction to Church Marketing — after all, isn’t marketing something sales-y people do, or companies trying to sell services or products?  Well, as Jake Dell points out, the opening sentences of Luke’s gospel show a pretty great example of someone selling a product and service — with a “money-back guarantee” to boot!

Marketing really is just evangelism by another name.  We believe in what we’re selling, don’t we? And our “product” promises everlasting life, peace, and grace. Our marketing efforts should match our enthusiasm for our mission. If we think about marketing our churches in this way, we can see dellthere’s a lot to learn from commercial marketing wisdom, and a lot that can be adapted for our purposes.  We’ll learn what marketing means, how to do it, when and where to do it, and just how important it is.

This course is perfect for those in church leadership, both lay and clergy; it offers a wealth of knowledge and tips for getting our gospel message out and getting folks in the door.  Click here for more information or to register.

The Rev. Jake Dell has worked in marketing and advertising for years and currently serves as the manager of digital advertising and sales for the Episcopal Church.

New Course: Introducing Stewardship with Kristine Miller

We’re excited to launch Introducing Stewardship in time for churches’ traditional Fall campaigns. And yet, one of the things Kristine Miller reminds us in this course is that stewardship isn’t just for a season. If we want to see real change and improvement in our fundraising, we need to remember that stewardship is more than money: it’s an ongoing practice of faith to which God calls us as we seek to do God’s work.miller

This course offers valuable advice on assembling a stewardship committee, strategizing communications efforts, and responding to changes in culture and practice so that we reach people where they are, as they are, and communicate our passion for our ministry.  If we’re excited about and committed to the work our church is doing, why shouldn’t we ask others to be?  No more apologizing or skirting around the issue.  People want to invest in things that matter — and we believe that our churches matter.

This course will be valuable to congregations, stewardship committees, church vestries and governing bodies, and clergy alike.  Click here to register or for more information.

Kristine Miller is a professional stewardship consultant, speaker, and writer. Her titles include Climb Higher: Reaching New Heights in Giving and Discipleship.