At Saint Mark's, we seek to provide a variety of opportunities for seekers to deepen in relationship with God and to encounter God's liberating love through community and attention to Holy Scripture, tradition, and reason. At Saint Mark's, we refer broadly to these offerings as "Faith Formation." If you're new to Saint Mark's, you may wish to check out opportunities especially for newcomers, on the Coffee and Classes page, or any of the opportunities below.
Baptismal Preparation Class and Rehearsal
SATURDAY, JUNE 8, 10:30 A.M.–12 NOON, Cathedral Nave
Designed specifically for baptismal candidates and their sponsors. Prior to the class, candidates and their families meet with clergy to learn about this rite of initiation into the Christian faith. The day before baptisms, baptismal candidates and their sponsors get together to meet one another and to learn more about this ancient practice. Time is set aside ask questions and to walk through the baptismal liturgy.
Preaching in the West Coast Environs—Possibilities and Pitfalls: A Workshop for Preachers with The Rev. Dr. Ray Pickett
THURSDAY, JUNE 13, 9:30 A.M.–3 P.M., Bloedel Hall
John Steinbeck once said “If the story is not about the hearer, he will not listen” (East of Eden).
Preaching text and context at the same time is difficult. Yet that is our charge as we invite others into purposeful dialogue between scripture and culture. The Rev. Dr. Ray Pickett will address the contextual reality of preaching in our secularized region, drawing on his work as a New Testament theologian and his work in community organizing around matters of racial justice and social equity, grounded in principles of community formation found in scripture. This is a timely conversation for all preachers.
Turning the Church Inside-Out: Liminal Spaces Where Jesus is Found: A Workshop for Clergy and Lay Leaders with The Rev. Dr. Ray Pickett
SATURDAY, JUNE 15, 9:30 A.M.–3 P.M., Bloedel Hall
The Rev. Dr. Ray Pickett has a proposition for the Church to consider: “These are challenging times that call [us] to mobilize the Church to be more engaged in [our] communities and in the struggle for justice.” What does it look like for congregations to work for God’s justice in the context of the communities in which we live, and move and have our being? Using a model for faith-based community organizing grounded in scripture, Rev. Pickett will invite participants to explore ways to discover Jesus in unlikely places, and have our hearts turned in life-giving and radical ways.
Cathedral Commons: Wednesday evening formation
A variety of formation opportunities are offered on Wednesday nights at Saint Mark's, also known as "Cathedral Commons." A catered dinner is offered in Bloedel Hall from 6–7 p.m. (dinner served 6–6:30 p.m.) This is a time for fellowship, good food, and informal conversation. (Adults $7, Children $5, Max Family $20.) Then, from 7–8 p.m., an Adult Forum is held, on a variety of topics. View the Wednesday formation schedule here.
Weekly Tuesday Bible Study
Tuesdays, lunch at 11:30 a.m., study 12 p.m.–1:30 p.m., Bloedel Hall
Interested in learning more about the upcoming Sunday’s Scripture readings? Each week a discussion is facilitated and lively discussions ensue as people share their thoughts about the lessons. Feel free to bring your lunch with you and join the conversation. For more informaiton, contact Elise von Koschembahr.
Second Sunday Book Club
Second Sunday of each month, 12:30 p.m.–1 p.m., Cathedral House Room 209
Meets second Sunday of odd numbered months. Discussion of the book chosen at prior meeting. All are welcome. Contact Amelia Canaday.
The Wisdom School
Looking to go deeper? The Wisdom School offers a balanced path for spiritual transformation grounded in prayer and practice, drawing on the Christian contemplative tradition while respecting the diversity of experiences born from contemplative practices of other traditions. Read more here.
March 10–April 14, 2019, 12:30–2 p.m., Bloedel Hall (light lunch included)
All are welcome to come to these classes, which cover the basics of the Christian faith through the Episcopal/Anglican lens. Following these classes, many decide they want to become an Episcopalian through confirmation or reception into the church. Some who attend are experiencing a revival of the soul and may desire to reaffirm their baptismal vows. Interested? Contact The Rev. Cristi Chapman.
Education for Ministry [external link]
Mondays, September 18–June 4, Carriage House
The Episcopal Church’s most in-depth adult Christian education course is EfM—Education for Ministry. Study the Bible, history, theology, and connect faith and life experiences through theological reflection. EfM is a program of The School of Theology at Sewanee, and admission requires a solid commitment to attend the weekly seminars and spend between two and four hours in study and preparation weekly during the academic year (September-June), in either the Monday morning group or Monday evening group. It is a four-year program, but students commit to one year at a time. EfM is also available online for students who are not able to attend the weekly seminars. Interested in EfM? Contact: Tom Hayton.