We recognize the necessity of spiritual inquisitiveness to strengthen and enliven our faith, therefore we provide programs to welcome doubting Thomases, and we invite questioning Christians to voice their questions. Former Bishop Michael Creighton posed the question, “What kind of society would we have if we stopped educating our young people in math, science and English after seventh grade the way some churches stop Christian formation after confirmation?” At Saint Andrew’s we draw on the expertise and interests of congregants to continue our Christian formation at 9:15 a.m. on Sundays. Lay leaders offer lectures and discussion on topics from George Herbert to global warming; from Anglicanism around the world to the impact of feasting and fasting on stewardship.
Spirituality is our connection to that which is beyond our understanding, greater than any individual and greater than any group; spirituality is our individual connection to God. Within vibrant Christians or within a vibrant community, spiritual life continues to grow and deepen, enriching the individual as well as the larger community. Attention to the inner life is at the core of this aliveness. Regular contemplative events such quiet mornings, praying the Anglican rosary, Lenten programs and Lectio Divina of poetry provide a venue for Saint Andrew’s congregants to recognize God’s presence through deepening and growing their personal practice.
Short-term (usually four to six weeks) study opportunities are made available at various times each year, sometimes following a national church curriculum, other times following a course of study created in-house. As religion commentator Diana Butler Bass puts it, “Heart and head, spirit and intellect, tradition and questioning — all of a piece.” Examining these pieces in community can be the foundation of spiritual growth; integrating the pieces is the essence of healing.
Education for Ministry
Education for Ministry is a program of theological distance-learning education of the School of Theology of the University of the South. Students sign up one year at a time for this four-year program, which covers the basics of a theological education in the Old and New Testaments, church history, liturgy and theology. Students meet regularly, usually once a week, in seminars under the guidance of trained mentors. The program grants a certificate at the completion of the four years and 18 continuing education units for each year’s work. Every baptized person is called to ministry, and the EfM program provides the education to carry out that ministry. It gives participants an opportunity to discover how to respond to the call to Christian service. Learn more at www.sewanee.edu/efm.
Arts @ St. Andrew’s Blog Site
This venture, sponsored by parishioners involved in the creation, interpretation, and teaching of the arts, is devoted to the exploration of the relationship between Christian faith and artistic creation. Featuring on average one new contribution each month, the blog site is designed to stimulate interest in the capacity of imagination to express, examine, and enrich our spiritual journey.
This diverse and open group meets at 7:00 p.m. on the fourth Tuesday of each month to discuss a book of common interest within the context of the church community. The readings, selected by group consensus, range widely from various forms of fiction to history, memoir/biography, philosophy, and other kinds of writing. Check the Events Calendar for details about current book selections.
Daughters of the King
Saint Andrew’s is home to the Julian of Norwich chapter of Daughters of the King, an international order of women from the Episcopal, Roman Catholic, and Lutheran churches who take a vow to pray daily, serve the rector of their parish, and live their lives in a manner consistent with Christ’s teachings. In past years, we have offered quiet mornings, rosary construction workshops, the recitation of the Anglican rosary, prayer workshops, and book discussions. Please contact Michele Marini (firstname.lastname@example.org) or join us for a meeting.
Based in monastic tradition, Lectio Divina involves a slow contemplative reading of a Bible passage. The Lectio Divina group meets one Sunday per month during Education Hour, and sits with one of the Lectionary readings for the day. Contact Christina Ford for more information about the group and when it meets.
Friday Film Series
Parishioners and other members of the community assemble one Friday evening each month during the academic year to view and discuss a film that raises issues of faith, spiritual practice, and ethical decision. The Friday Film Series also runs a cinematic version of the Passion narrative on the evening of Good Friday. Check the Events Calendar for dates and movie selections.
This group of women, primarily from St. Andrew’s, meets on the first and third Thursday of each month during the academic year at 9:30 a.m., with a focus on learning about compassion, sharing it, and reaching out to compassionate causes. Activities include reading books, hearing speakers, and contributing to local and international works of mercy.