EPF Lay Preacher Training Curriculum opens to all dioceses

Episcopal Preaching Foundation
Posted Mar 19, 2024

Trainers and preachers-in-training in the Diocese of North Carolina, 2023.

The Episcopal Preaching Foundation will launch in April a new one-year curriculum for dioceses to use for lay preacher training. Interested dioceses are invited to attend one of the informational webinars scheduled for April 9 and 17.

The Lay Preacher Training Curriculum (LPTC) consists of a 12-month program of self-study video and printed materials, moderated by one or more diocesan-appointed trainers who will receive training from EPF staff.

The curriculum can be used in person, on media platforms like Zoom, or a combination of the two. The training utilizes the best techniques for adult learners, and half of the students’ work will be preaching in small groups to feedback, hence, learning by doing.

EPF will offer training for the trainers in May and June so they can recruit students over the summer and begin the program in September. An EPF staff member will assist in helping dioceses get started and is available to troubleshoot and provide support on an ongoing basis.

The Lay Preacher Training Curriculum was developed with support from a grant from Trinity Church Wall Street. A two-year pilot training program was offered for 30 students in six dioceses (North Carolina, Minnesota, Nebraska, Lexington, Central Gulf Coast, and East Tennessee). The 30 successful students were celebrated and commissioned at the Washington National Cathedral on November 11, 2023. Feedback from students and their diocesan trainers has been incorporated into the final program, notably by shortening the training to one year.

Bishop Scott Barker of Nebraska commented that his participants “…loved the fellowship…becoming increasingly articulate evangelists”. Bishop Barker’s full video testimonial is at: https://youtu.be/hBREi2WTPkI

The informational webinars will be offered on two dates: April 9 at 5:00pm and April 17 at 2:00pm, (both times Eastern).  Bishops and their diocesan leadership are invited to register online at: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeFnoMSgonqagSTXPYeDYjV2cyufVQZfvnAsNV3r8w8AHy8Pw/viewform

Dr. Stephen Smith, EPF National Coordinator of the Program summarized the potential of the program to dioceses:

“By lifting up these newly minted lay preachers, their dioceses will have the benefit of not only a unique voice within each of their home parishes but also a potential resource to augment preaching rosters across the diocese.”

If you have questions or would like more information, contact the coordinator of the Lay Preaching Program, the Rev. Dr. Stephen Smith, at revdupstephen@gmail.com