Learning Forte is excited to be a part of the 2022 Forma Conference. At the end of Day 1, our team spent some time reflecting on ideas and experiences that stuck with us.
From Jenn Baker (Consultant, Integrated Learning):
I’m excited to see the energy in the Christian Formation community through this digital event.
The panel discussion this afternoon highlighted the history of Forma / NACED and the possibilities for the future. While the panelists spoke of their own experiences and dreams, the chat was alive with new ideas about how the Church can walk with disciples into the future and the challenges that we still face. I saw leaders willing to take on these challenges with renewed energy and creative experiments.
During the panel discussion, I was reminded of Rev. Brokenleg’s sharing of the flower petals. May this conference be an opportunity for us all to reflect on our own petals and honor all the petals of others, without tossing any to the ground.
From Matt O’Rear (Consultant, Organizational Development & Innovation):
The opening worship of Forma 2022 was a beautifully inclusive digital liturgy. The Diocese of Rio Grande showed us in real-time what Learning Forte has been coaching others to embrace, that hybrid ministry is dynamic and a place for holy imagination.
During the Forma Opening Worship, we explored various areas of the territory of the Diocese of Rio Grande through images and songs. The worship was offered in multiple languages, including indigenous languages, and a wide variety of leaders assisted in the worship.
In his sermon, The Rt. Rev. Michael Buerke said: “We are engaging Christan formation for this particular moment.” This is exactly what Learning Forte is all about, helping Christan Leaders embrace hybrid ministry with confidence, for this particular moment.
One Forma participant said in chat during worship, “while we are not there, yet they are still moving our hearts and nourishing our spirits. Thank you, Diocese of Rio Grande.”
Amen. An excellent start to Forma 2022!
From Kyle Oliver (Chief Product Officer):
I’m so grateful for Rev. Brokenleg’s emphasis on inviting and embracing the cultural practices of everyone in our communities as a part of Christian formation.
Cooking, crafting, sports, music, and more—these activities are a deeply meaningful part of all our lives. But they often feel separate from the practices of church communities. I believe cultural practices can serve as threads of connection that help us relate the joy of the gospel to our everyday lives. Sharing and receiving them in a regular, attentive way can also connect us more deeply to each other.
In my research studying storytelling practices in a faith-adjacent mentoring community for foster youth, I’ve been struck over and over again by the power of very simple practices to form community. I believe it matters much less what we do together and much more that we do things together.
There’s a sacred space that forms when we bake homemade pizza together, or explore a new part of town, or stroll through a park with no agenda. That space, the spirit of our gatherings, derives as much from our intentionality as it does whatever content or lesson we bring with us as leaders.
I hope we each can learn to trust more and more that the Spirit will show up and form us together whenever we share experiences that matter deeply in our lives. That’s true whether we’re gathering in person, online, or through some combination of both.
Looking for training that will help you embrace hybrid ministry with confidence? Check out our signature facilitated courses Faith Formation in a Hybrid World (starts Jan. 28) and Design + Deliver: Intensive on Teaching Online & Hybrid Courses (starts Feb. 7).
Want to know more about Learning Forte? Start with our Work page to learn more about our clients and offerings.