As a part of our GIFT (Growing in Faith Together) theme this year at Emmanuel, we are experimenting with many different approaches to Christian education. Christian education and catechists are vital for growing a vibrant spiritual life!
Two initiatives have been introduced and the results have been very positive. They are:
Faith, Vocation and Economics Series: “Under the Tent”
This two-month series took place on Sundays “Under the Tent” and Monday mornings in the Family Life Center. The focus was the topic of “Faith, Vocation and Economics.” Between February and March, we attracted between 25 to 50 attendees on Sundays and around 30 to 44 every Monday for the lecture series. Respected and qualified speakers presented, and the lectures were well received. This format gave people two options: (1) come on Sunday for a 30 minute primer on the topic or (2) participate on Mondays for a comprehensive presentation and discussion. We will definitely repeat this series in 2020 starting in late January.
Discover Emmanuel: Discovering our Evangelical Identity around Faith, Vocation and Economics
This initiative was birthed from an educational opportunity for new congregational members. The initial thinking was that with more than 40 new members, we needed to offer content about Lutheran doctrine and practice. Through discussions, we realized that the 5-part series could benefit any participant in their Lutheran Learning and Faith Formation.
The 5-part series explored our “Evangelical Identity” as Lutherans. As with the “Faith, Vocation and Economic” series above, each session was offered twice, once on Sunday between services in the Media Center and once on Monday afternoons at 4PM. The sessions on Sundays have gone very well, especially the first talk within the Sanctuary concerning Emmanuel’s stained glass windows and architectural design. 45 people attended that session. In subsequent weeks, 20 - 25 attended each Sunday session. Mondays added another 10 - 15 participants, including 5 - 10 in person and 7- 11 online utilizing live streaming technology.
“Discover Emmanuel” is structured to to offer educational opportunities for members and friends here in Naples and anywhere there is an internet connection. We are off to a great start! For more information about Discover Emmanuel and to discuss other upcoming educational opportunities as well as learning needs, please contact
Pastor Rick Bliese