EfM gives tools for thinking in new ways; it leads to new understanding of the fullness of God's kingdom; it inspires faith in God and confidence in living in God's creation.
Last year, Bishop Price renewed diocesan support for the program, understanding that the in-depth study and personal examination of faith build a stronger church and a more committed laity.
The four-year program is described on the web site of the University of the South's School of Theology, the developer of the program over 30 years ago. First-year students study the Old Testament; second-year, the New Testament; third, early church history; and in the fourth year, 20th century religious thought. A typical class includes worship, prayer, discussion of the week's reading, and theological reflection, the cornerstone of the program.
"When I was a parish priest, I always had some people who desired to go the second and third miles to improve their own understanding of the faith," Bishop Price said recently in a letter mailed to parishes. "I tried many programs, but by far found the best program to be EfM. It is well-founded, theologically sound, interactive and engaging. It provides ample training for the mentors and is neither too elementary nor too overwhelming for participants."
Our diocese has three EfM classes scheduled to begin this fall. Two are at Calvary, East Liberty, an evening class that is currently full, and a Thursday morning class beginning on September 15 from 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. that is accepting students. The third class, also accepting new students, is at St. Paul's, Mount Lebanon. It begins September 7 and meets Wednesdays at 7:00 p.m.
If you or someone you know would enjoy taking EfM, please call Wanda Guthrie, the mentor of the Calvary class at 724-327-2767, or Paula Hopkins, mentor at St. Paul's at 412-343-0462 to enroll.