Synod Theme: Formation and Discipleship in a Secular Age
In the face of growing secularization, what are the theological foundations for catechesis? What does formation look like in exile? What can we learn from the ancient church—Peter, Ambrose, Augustine? And how do we take up the biblical mandate to pass on the faith to new generations? Dr. Gordon Smith will help us reclaim the fundamental ministry of discipleship.
Session 1. “The Only Tragedy in Life”
Working with the text of Colossians 1:24 – 2:7. The theological foundations for catechesis: the call to maturity; the interplay of personal responsibility with the ministry of the church; the focus on Christ; the dialectic between heart and mind in formation and discipleship.
Session 2. Catechesis in a Secular Age: the call of 1 Peter
Working with the whole of the letter of 1 Peter, asking what it means to do catechesis in the face of secularization; learning from the exilic language of 1 Peter; considering also the wisdom to be gleaned from the ancient catechumenate [Ambrose of Milan and Augustine].
Session 3. From Generation to Generation.
Psalm 78 and 2 Timothy 1:1 – 2:2. Catechesis and Inter-generationality. The church as an inter-generational community and indeed that it is imperative that a faith community be marked by the investment of those who are older in the lives and experience of the generation that is coming.