Episcopal Preaching Foundation Partners with John Templeton Foundation on 'The Science of Forgiveness in the Practice of Preaching'

Posted Jan 5, 2017

[Episcopal Preaching Foundation] This year the Episcopal Preaching Foundation will partner with the John Templeton Foundation integrate studies on forgiveness into the practice of preaching.

EPF’s mission is based on the premise that strong and vibrant preaching will attract congregants and grow the Episcopal Church. The study of forgiveness will be the focus at EPF Preaching Excellence Program I and II, which will be held beginning May 28 at the Roslyn Conference Center, Richmond, Virginia,  and June 13 at the Theological School of Drew University, Madison, New Jersey, respectively.

Founded by Sir John Templeton in 1987, the John Templeton Foundation serves as a philanthropic catalyst for discoveries relating to the “Big Questions” of human purpose and ultimate reality. The Foundation supports research on subjects ranging from complexity, evolution, and infinity to creativity, forgiveness, love, and free will. It encourages civil, informed dialogue among scientists, philosophers, and theologians and between such experts and the public at large.

A. Gary Shilling, EPF founder and chairman, as well as a well-known economist, noted that, “This is a win – win for both the EPF and the John Templeton Foundation. The investment that Templeton made in funding the study and research on forgiveness now has a practical purpose and application in our Preaching Excellence Programs for priests and seminarians. We are grateful to be given the chance to advance the important work of the John Templeton Foundation in our programs.”

EPF has been delivering its flagship “Preaching Excellence Program” for nearly 30 years. PEP I provides preacher training to seminarians. This past year 53 seminarians from ten different Episcopal seminaries in both the United States and Canada attended PEP.  The recently introduced PEP II provides training for parish priests who are three to five years into their ministries and this year there were 19 participants representing congregations in 15 states.

In 2017, PEP I and II will integrate the work and research of Dr. Everett Worthington, Professor of Psychology at Virginia Commonwealth University on understanding forgiveness, its benefits and how people can effectively forgive.

In addition to the PEP conference, EPF coordinates with diocesan bishops to deliver training conferences for Episcopal priests in the field.  This year conferences were conducted in the Diocese of Montana, South Carolina, Central Gulf Coast (Florida), Western Michigan, Atlanta, West Tennessee and Newfoundland and Labrador. For more information on EPF go to www.preachingfoundation.org.