The Episcopal Diocese of Olympia | October 2019
Faith formation encompasses the ministries and activities offered by the church that help people grow in faith and in their understanding of and love for God.

Sweet Silence
It was a joy to participate in a "Listening Workshop" last week, led by the Rev. Susan Dean, the Executive Director and Priest-in-Residence of Underhill House , "a quiet place to pause for prayer," and a ministry of the Bishop's Office.

The training was for aspiring "listeners," who are scheduled to "hold the space" when Underhill House opens its doors to the public. This happens every Thursday for two hours, something Susan has been doing without fail for nearly 5 years.

People in this busy and diverse Capitol Hill neighborhood stop by, pray, meditate, enjoy the quiet, restful environment, and even share what's on their minds with the listeners who are strategical posted indoors and out.

Coincidentally, as I drove to the training, KUOW was airing an interview with Ryan Holiday discussing his new book, Stillness is the Key (click and scroll down). In it h e says, "S tillness is that quiet moment when inspiration hits you. It’s that ability to step back and reflect. It’s what makes room for gratitude and happiness. It’s one of the most powerful forces on earth."

Silence, and by extension, inner peace, is of increasing value in our world as it becomes more elusive. A "silence ministry" is something every church could provide in some form. In fact, many churches are already formally practicing silence -- through midweek prayer and meditation groups; by taking a pause during Sunday services; and in the classrooms with children and youth. When we teach the appreciation for silence, we tap into that longing that is akin to, if not the same as, the longing for God and a life attuned to the spirit.
-- Valerie Reinke
Just Ask A Librarian...
By Sue Tait

QUESTION: I'm looking for an "instructed liturgy.” Do you have anything I could use?  

SUE SAYS: Well, first it depends on what group you are trying to reach.  An instructed Eucharist specifically for children would be different from one for the entire congregation. But, recently I came across a fairly new and entirely unique way of presenting this information to adults: a "Digital Instructed Eucharist."

Called How2charist , all you need is an email address to which the link can be sent. It is free, and there is a downloadable “small group discussion guide” online as well.

Instead of the liturgy pausing periodically so the presider can explain an action and the theology behind it, this is continuous action, with the explanation in a running crawl at the bottom of the screen.

Breathe in the Fragrance of God:
Making Apple Cider as Spiritual Practice
This article is from one of our featured blogs, Godspace (see "Quick Links" below). Christine Sine's ideas for cider making could easily translate into an after church or youth group harvest activity. And if you can get your hands on a real cider press, all the better.

By Christine Sine

On Saturday we harvested over 400 lbs. of apples from our 3 semi dwarf trees and I am stunned by the fact that all this came from a single seed planted many years ago and slowly maturing until it overwhelms us with its abundance. This is not the first time we have harvested apples from our trees but it is certainly the most plentiful harvest and maybe the first time that I have allowed myself to pause and tank God for the abundance of a seed. Read more...
Quick Links
Faith Formation at Your Fingertips
Annotated by Aemelia Tripp

Building Faith : Articles from ministry leaders about faith and formation. A wide array of topics written by women and men, lay and clergy including: equipping you for ministry, providing seasonal ideas for all ages, and curating resources for faith formation.
Godly Play Resources : Products for Christian education and spiritual direction for children, including felt and wooden sets to illustrate various Bible stories with the Godly Play curriculum.

Storypath : Connects children’s literature with faith stories, including book reviews for different age groups, lectionary links, and ideas for ministry.

Picture Book Theology : Dives into 365 days of picture books for all ages that connect to scripture, plus workshop presentations and lessons based on the website author’s favorite picture books. Many books about peace, inclusion, justice, and civil rights, just to name a few topics!

Treasure Box Tuesday: A weekly email of all the best resources for Children/Family Ministries. There are links to interesting articles, products, books, conferences and all sorts of great goodies.
The Episcopal Church : Resources abound for everything from glossary of Episcopal terms to sermons and bible studies of the week. The homepage currently showcases a video where Presiding Bishop Michael Curry introduces five bishops whose dioceses are actively engaged in immigrant welcome.

Godspace : A site that hosts prayer, social, and service events. Interested in joining a small group or attending an event? Check out this site to learn more!

Lifelong Learning at Virginia Theological Seminary : Lifelong Learning provides theological education for the committed and the curious, lay and clergy eager to claim and explore their Christian vocations in today’s world.

Faith & Leadership : A starting point for engaging deep issues, Leadership & Education at Duke Divinity offers programs, grants, and other materials to dig deeper into your faith.

Words of Wisdom - November 1 & 2:
Gertrud Mueller Nelson
"Dances with God" at Saint Mark's
Saint Mark's Wisdom School is delighted to host faith formation guru and beloved author, Gertrud Mueller Nelson, in a series of workshops that are free and open to all.

Clergy, staff, volunteers and families will benefit from Gertrud's guidance on developing faith at home and her emphasis on the ways that the seasons and cycles of the church year reflect the seasons and cycles of life. Gain insight into her life's work: how collective observances and personal observances are enriched through traditions and rituals.

Join us at Saint Mark's Cathedral for one or both days:

  • Friday, November 1, 6–8 p.m., Bloedel Hall, dinner included.
  • Saturday, November 2, 9 a.m.–2 p.m., Skinner Auditorium, lunch included.

Co-sponsored by the Diocese of Olympia and Saint Mark’s Children & Family Ministries. Program is free with required RSVP.

Safe Church Training:
You Can Be the Trainer
Safe Church Training -- We highly recommend you and your volunteers take the Safeguarding God's Children and People trainings "in community" at one of the many scheduled throughout the Diocese . If the in-person training is not an option, you can take the training on-line. See the links below for more information.

Become a Safe Church Trainer -- an option for clergy, staff and volunteers who have taken the training and feel comfortable facilitating it. "Mentor Trainers" are available to assist you in this process, contact to get started.

Host a Training -- If you are planning to schedule a Safeguarding training at your church, please let us know with this simple on-line form so we can share the news on the Diocesan website.
Child-Care at Convention
Child Care Offered. If you're planning on attending Convention and will have kids in tow, make arrangements for them to stay with our qualified and screened Childcare Providers. They will play games, make crafts, read books, and eat lunch and snacks with our team. Drop-in and out at any time during the open hours: Friday, November 8, 9:30am – 6:45pm and Saturday, November 9, 8am – 4:15pm. Cost is $20/day per child or $50/day for families of three children or more. Half-day rates available. For more information and to register:  Child Care at Diocesan Convention  
Providers Needed. Do you love working with kids or know someone who does? We're recruiting Childcare Providers for Diocesan Convention in Lynnwood on Friday, November 8 and Saturday, November 9. Childcare Providers will assist with children under age 10, playing games, doing crafts, reading books, feeding snacks and lunch. $20/hour. Travel expenses will be reimbursed (mileage/bus/tolls/ferry/etc.) and lunch provided. Required: background check and the Safeguarding God’s Children on-line training (details will be made available). For more information and to let us know if you are available for either or both days, email Aemelia at
Our Fall Middle School Retreat: We Are Stardust...

“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”
From Psalm 139
God is all around us – we can’t escape from God’s loving presence! Join other middle school youth (grades 6 - 9) for a fun overnight adventure November 23 - 24 at Epiphany Episcopal Parish in Seattle as we learn more about how we connect with God, and the world around us. We’ll have small group conversations, games, workshops, and worship - as well as the chance for you to meet friends from around the diocese and explore your faith in a safe place!
Register today and learn more about what it means to be part of something bigger!
$35 Registration includes meals, retreat supplies, and onsite lodging at Epiphany, Seattle.
Scholarships are available.
Forming Christian Leaders...
The Diocesan Youth Council is Recruiting through October
Do you know a teen who shows good leadership skills and would like to provide input into what type of diocesan youth events we offer and help to plan and lead them? The Diocesan Youth Council is a great opportunity for teens to acquire and demonstrate leadership skills as they build their portfolios.
Youth commit to serving for a one year term (about 3 meetings), must attend church regularly, and need to be in 9 th  -12 th  grade. It’s helpful if they can be there in person for at least one of the meetings and the others they can do remotely via their computer.

Please email Denise Brumbaugh with names and contact info. by the end of October so she can follow up with those interested
Episcopal Youth Event
Join Other Episcopal Teens in
Washington D.C. this Summer!
Your teens are invited to an international youth event that only happens every 3 years: "Episcopal Youth Event" or "EYE" where over a thousand youth gather for celebration, worship, learning and leadership development. In 2020 it will be in Washington DC!

New this year, you will have two ways to attend:

  • You can choose to go as your own youth group with your own chaperones and organization; or,
  • Your youth can join a delegation from throughout our diocese and register as a group through the bishop’s office with diocesan coordination.

We have not received complete information yet but do know that registration for just the event is $200 and on-site food/lodging for the days of the event is $200. We are waiting for costs that are outside the days of the event and travel.

At this time we are looking at gathering the evening of July 5, flying out on July 6, spending a day in D.C. on July 7, attending EYE20 from July 8 - 10, and then traveling back on July 11. The diocese will offset some of these costs. More information and application/registration will be confirmed after 2020 budgets have been approved at Convention.

This will be an exciting opportunity to connect with and be energized by youth from around the world!

Youth Calendar: Save these Dates
As you begin planning for this new faith formation year, please consider adding some of these diocesan youth events into your offerings. Talk to Denise Brumbaugh if you'd like to staff a retreat as a small group facilitator, support staff, convener, or musician. New this year: all retreats will have onsite sleeping!
What are the benefits of youth participation in Diocesan events? They experience different leaders, meet new friends, visit other churches in our diocese, and live into a larger Christian community.
  • NOVEMBER. Convention 11/8-9 @ Lynnwood Convention Center
  • NOVEMBER. Fall Middle School Retreat 11/23-24 @ Epiphany in Seattle
  • FEBRUARY. Winter High School Retreat 2/28-3/1 @ Black Diamond Camp in Auburn
  • MARCH. Better Together Day of Faith Formation Training 3/7@ St Margaret’s Bellevue
  • MAY. Middle School Diocesan House Overnight 5/16-17
  • JUNE. Connect (A retreat for adults involved in youth ministry) 6/12-14 @ St. Andrew’s House
  • JUNE. Launch for Graduating Seniors 6/20 (tentative)
  • JULY. EYE (Episcopal Youth Event) July 6-11 held in partnership with Washington National Cathedral and the Episcopal Diocese of Washington on the campus of Howard University, Washington D.C. An international youth gathering of the larger Episcopal church.
  • JULY. Six-Day, Youth Summer Camp 7/19-25 (tentative dates)
Youth, Youth Leaders, Volunteers & Parents
Follow Diocesan Youth on Social Media
Stay current on upcoming events and youth related news!

Be sure to "Like" Episcopal Youth of Western Washington , our Facebook page... Also Follow us on Instagram @ecwwyouth
Please promote these opportunities for adults in their 20's-30's in your Sunday bulletins.
Need specific formatting? Let us know at
Young Adult Happenings
In the Greater Seattle Area ~ All Are Welcome
Questioning Together  - Monday, November 4th (first Mondays of the month, year-round) – A supportive group that discusses questions of faith and meaning over dinner. Saint Mark's Cathedral, Capitol Hill - 7:30 – 9:00 p.m. and follow on Facebook .

Evening Episcopalians  – Sunday evenings, about once-a-month -- Curious about the traditions, histories and flavors of other churches in our diocese? Let’s check out the evening services at different parishes in the Seattle area, and maybe go for dinner/drinks afterward. Get on the meet-up e-mail list: and follow on Facebook .

Nacho Theology  -  Thursday, October 24th (fourth Thursdays of the month) -- T.S. McHugh's Pub, Lower Queen Anne, 7:15 - 8:30 p.m. St. Paul’s hosts a gathering for young adults or for those who like hanging out with young adults. It is a place for telling stories, eating food, growing in community, and unpacking what it means to be embodied theologians. 
Convention Workshop:
What Are Young Adults Searching For & Can They Find it in the Episcopal Church?

Episcopal church leaders: Katya Nemec (Emmanuel, Mercer Island); Josh deLacy (St. Luke's, Renton); and, Heather Irwin (Holy Cross Redmond); will be speaking on, " What Are Young Adults Searching For & Can They Find it in the Episcopal Church?" at the Diocese of Olympia's annual convention this year. You can catch them on Friday, November 8th from 1:00 - 2:00 p.m. at the Lynnwood Convention Center.

Learn what drew them to the Episcopal faith and how you too can create space in your congregation where people in their 20's and 30's feel welcome and inspired. Drawing from their participation in October's national Evolving Faith conference and from deep involvement with young adult programs across the diocese, Josh, Heather & Katya, will get you thinking about how to make church more inviting and relevant for millennials. 

Check out all of the great workshop offerings at convention this year:

Follow the Diocese Young Adult Facebook Page
Be sure to "Like" and encourage the Young Adults in your congregation to "Like" Episcopal Young Adults of Western Washington .
I Dream of a Quiet Man
By Wendell Berry
I dream of a quiet man
who explains nothing and defends
nothing, but only knows
where the rarest wildflowers
are blooming, and who goes,
and finds that he is smiling
not by his own will.

From  Given . © HarperCollins Publishers, 1995.
Denise Brumbaugh
Youth Ministry
Program Coordinator
Sue Tait
Director, Resource Center
Grace La Torra
Director for Adult Faith Formation
Dean, Iona School
Aemelia Tripp
Seattle Service Corps
2019 - 2020
Valerie Reinke
Canon for Faith Formation:
35 and Under
Faith Formation | The Episcopal Diocese of Olympia | 206.325.4200 |