Emphasizing Christian Formation
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How can distinctively Methodist approaches to preaching, prayer, fellowship, and other practices help us nurture both character and gifts?
We invite you to join Duke Divinity School in “Emphasizing Christian Formation,” the third of five courses in the Rediscovering the Heart of Methodism series, designed to help engaged laypeople and clergy (including local pastors in licensing schools) develop core capacities for innovative leadership within the Wesleyan tradition.
This course examines how Methodism’s deep-rooted attention to Christian formation can nurture both gifts and character in our communities. We’ll see how Methodist formation hinges upon the Methodist doctrine of holiness. We’ll consider how innovations in the complementary practices of preaching and fellowship were directed to holiness and fueled the growth of Methodism in 18th-century England. We will also consider how education contributes to our growth as disciples of Christ. Drawing on these lessons allows us to rethink the practices of our own communities. Finally, we will learn that the Methodist way of Christian formation finds its fullest expression in prayer.
Each course includes four weeks of interactive video lessons from Duke Divinity School faculty and Methodist leaders, plus a course workbook PDF including exercises to accompany each video lesson and discussion guides for group meetings.
Through this course, we hope you will experience a deeper grounding in the distinctive elements of Methodism at its best, and a renewed capacity for hopeful, imaginative participation in the mission of God.
Weekly Lesson Overview
Week 1: Emphasizing Christian Formation: Nurturing Character and Gifts
Week 2: From Preaching to Fellowship: Building Networks of Formation in Early Methodism
Week 3: Oxford: The University as an Instrument of Christian Renewal
Week 4: Praying in the Wesleyan Tradition