During our 2018 season of listening and renewal process, you requested more opportunities to grow, strengthen and equip spiritual leaders, particularly in the areas of congregational renewal, discipleship, proclamation, spiritual practices, faith formation, evangelism, stewardship, social justice, and advocacy.  As January marks the turn of a new calendar year, God continues to make all things new.

To faithfully respond to God’s mission for us in this time and place, we are excited to share that in deeper cooperation and partnership with the Episcopal Church in Central Pennsylvania and the state-wide Stevenson School For Ministry, there are more opportunities than ever before to grow, strengthen and equip lifelong spiritual leaders.

We invite you to consider these transformational courses and upcoming certificate programs designed to help us keep Jesus at the center of our lives.

In Partnership with the Stevenson School for Ministry (SSFM), New Online Courses for Mission

To help parish leaders joyfully and faithfully respond to Christ’s mission, The Stevenson School for Ministry now offers five-week course modules specifically designed for parish life.  These transformational courses help leaders explore The Way of Love as The Way of Life. Looking to Jesus as the model for our faith, we invite you to consider courses designed to help us keep Jesus at the center of our lives.

The Stevenson School For Ministry is a learning community forming lay and ordained leadership for the church of today and the future. The SSFM is dedicated to the lifelong learning and discernment processes of all Episcopalians in the Diocese of Central Pennsylvania and beyond.  They seek to make theological education available to all, because they believe it to be essential to furthering the mission and ministry of the Church.

The Stevenson School for Ministry

Certificate in Missional Preaching – Begins Fall of 2019

Launching fall of 2019 is our new Certificate in Missional Preaching.  Through a series of retreats, webinars, and cohort gatherings, each participant will grow by listening and reflecting in community.  Designed to engage the entire congregation, the certificate program officially kicks off in October 2019.  Registration opens soon at lss-elca.org.

Before Programming Begins

  • There is an application process and requires approval from leadership (Council or Vestry)

  • Every congregation identified a team of four to eight intentional listeners who will meet with the practitioner once a month.  (Practitioner is invited to consider creating open forums where people talk about/reflect on the sermon.)

  • Each preacher will be placed in a cohort with 3 other learners. Certificate-seeking participants will select who they want to learn with.

  • Lay preachers will be assigned to cohorts with other lay preachers.

Certificate Specifics

October 17, 2019 (part of Lower Susquehanna Synod’s Bishop’s Convocation):
“Reading the Bible to Find God”

(Launch Day is open to everyone – not just those seeking the certificate)

Presenters: Paul Scott Wilson (Author of 4 Pages of the Sermon) will present on “How do you preach biblically into context?” Presenter Tracy Radosevic will focus on “How do we tell better stories?” Dr. Deirdre Good, professor of New Testament at General Theological Seminary has been invited to present as well.

October 18, 2019
focused on “Transformational Preaching: How the Bible Points to Felt Needs”

During this retreat day, we will work on upcoming lectionary readings so participants will have practical take-aways to inform their preaching.

Late April/Early May 2020

Certificate awarded – learning cohort with colleagues/within the congregation

Between October & April, Paul Scott Wilson will host 3 liturgically focused webinars and Tracy Radosevic will offer a storytelling webinar and solicit questions in advance to inform webinar.

  • Advent, Christmas
  • Lent, Easter
  • Ordinary Time

Additional Webinar events may include the following:

  • Last week of November, before Advent 1 (tentative thoughts)
    By this time, the regional groups will have met and responded to a sermon of each other. The first part of the webinars could be us responding to questions and comments they have emailed in prior to the event. The rest of our time could be a discussion of how the liturgical season (in this case Advent) can motivate mission and responses to live questions.  Theory and exercise for the coming weeks: theological inversion.
  • End of January 2020: Same format as above. How post-Epiphany (Jan 12 is the first Sunday after) and Lent (begins Feb 26) texts can motivate mission.
  • End of March 2020: Format as above. How Easter (April 1) and Sundays after texts motivate mission.

Learning Covenant

Among the requirements in the learning covenant:

  1. Each participant will participate at least monthly in a cohort with 3 other learners/practitioners.
  2. Each participant will have the support of their ministry’s leadership team.
  3. Every participating ministry will be challenged to be open to experiment and innovation to deepen learning and the impact of the proclamation of the Gospel in their midst.
  4. Each participant will have a listening team in their congregation who will help them reflect on their learnings, and also to help them grow more fully.

Questions?  Contact Deacon Marsha Roscoe, Director for Mission Interpretation, mroscoe@lss-elca.org or 717-652-1852, Ext. 103 or Pastor Richard Jorgensen, Director for Evangelical Mission for Renewing Mission, rjorgensen@lss-elca.org, 717-652-1852, Ext. 105.