Faith Formation

If the root is holy, then the branches also are holy. —Romans 11:16
Tree tops
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Faith formation is people of all ages growing in their relationship with and understanding of God, Jesus, the Bible, and their faith. Faith formation is about living as disciples of Jesus in our day-to-day lives at home, at work, in our faith community, and in the world.

Join us as we create a faith formation ecosystem in the United Church rooted in prayer, Bible teaching/study, and an awareness of God’s presence and engagement in people’s lives. Please visit our iNspirefaith Facebook group to connect with and support one another, and The Presence Project, a way to transform the culture of your church using a simple immersion process for deepening spirituality.

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February 7, 2020

General Secretary Nora Sanders writes about experiencing a profound reminder of the presence of God in an everyday setting.

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September 23, 2019

Sunday, September 8, 2019 wasn’t the warmest early fall day and the St. Lawrence River had already begun to cool. Nevertheless, seven people from our faith community elected to be baptized (or renew their baptismal vows) through full immersion in the river. It’s powerful to witness members of our faith community proclaiming, through baptism, their desire to follow our crucified and risen saviour.

We do this service at Wall Street United Church annually. We start off by sharing a barbecue in a local park followed by an outdoor worship...

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April 26, 2019

Jane Dawson writes that the tragic fire at Notre Dame cathedral can remind us to look at what can be born when the defining symbols of our lives are changed.

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March 18, 2019

In the blog post Rev. David Sherwin writes that being a Christian isn’t something we are, it is something we aspire to be. When we practice our faith we set ourselves free. 

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February 14, 2019

There was a time, within the memory of many of us in The United Church of Canada, when a congregation could count on the culture around it to assist in the spiritual formation of its members. 

For children, weekly Sunday School classes and mid-week groups were supplemented by daily prayers and devotions in school. Even those adults who did not participate in Bible study groups were immersed in a culture that largely operated on the premise that there was consensus about morals and attitudes and that those morals and attitudes were shaped by the Christian story. Magazines, radio and...

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November 28, 2018

In the summer of 2018, our church decided to try Vacation Bible School camp (VBS).

The last time the United Church had organized a Vacations Bible School in the Gatineau Hills was circa 1955. Unsure of whether we could do this alone, Église Grace United Church asked our Anglican neighbours at St. Mary Magdalene in Chelsea if they would like to work together. They agreed!

We chose a theme: “Weird Animals” and adapted resources for our own context as we planned activities.

We advertised and prayed that children would sign up. On the first day of camp, 13 children...

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October 15, 2018

The word “formation” makes me think of fashioning something out of raw material — perhaps with the hands, like a piece of wood or a lump of clay or a garment.

I love to sing and I’ve learned that, aside from breathing, the most important factor in singing well is how you form your vowels.

We all have the ability to form the world around us and shape it according to our will.

When it comes to faith formation, though, it’s a little different. Generations testify to the fact that it is more about being formed than forming. It’s more something that is...

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July 9, 2018

The United Church of Canada is kicking off the 43rd General Council with the Festival of Faith. This celebration of our work and witness through the arts takes place July 21-22, 2018 in Oshawa, Ont.

The festival will be infused with an old-time country fair vibe, and feature an inspiring and joyful line-up of workshops, musicians, authors, dancers, storytellers, and craftspeople. There will also be opportunities to connect and offer your own voice and artistry in the coffee...

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July 9, 2018

When I was growing up, our family did not have a summer cottage, but we spent part of many summers at the cottage of our good friends, the Fosters. That cottage was on a beautiful lake in Muskoka, and although I haven’t been there for years, I have many clear images in my mind of the times there, swimming in the cold clear water, hiking over the rocks to pick blueberries, and reading by flashlight in the little bunkhouse down by the shore.

For years, if I was asked to name my favourite church, I would name the island on Muldrew Lake where cottagers gathered for outdoor worship on...

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June 14, 2018

Indigenous Day of Prayer reminds us that if we are to heal broken relationships, we must talk with one another. Let us begin today and never stop.