Two years after the first resources from the Christian Reformed Church’s Faith Practices Project launched, people around the world are growing in faith as they explore faith practices together. As the multiyear project continues to unfold, here’s how ministry leaders in different contexts are using and contributing to the resources:
Diana Boot worked as a Christian education specialist with Resonate Global Mission in Kampala, Uganda, before retiring in the summer of 2022. Her local house group with Kampala International Church began using the Faith Practices Project in their weekly meetings. They found the reflection and discussion questions offered for each practice particularly useful.
“The format is clear and straightforward,” Boot said, “yet the questions elicit deep reflection and conversation, especially in our multicultural community. Each segment has enough content for an evening of discussion without being overwhelming.”
In Australia, the Uniting Church in Australia’s Children and Families Ministry spent six weeks highlighting the faith practices of listening, service, wonder, prayer, celebration, and remembering. It shared reflection questions and images provided by the Faith Practices Project on its Facebook page each week to invite engagement and direct folks to the newly released resources for intergenerational worship and gatherings.
In the United Kingdom, Jill Weber, global convenor of the Order of the Mustard Seed, joined an episode of Open to Wonder to explore the faith practice of prayer with hosts Chris Schoon and Karen DeBoer. She described how she helps people assess how they are already practicing faith, look for ways to let go of distractions, and then follow the invitation of the Holy Spirit.
In Oklahoma, youth at First Presbyterian Church in Stillwater are focusing on the theme “Following Jesus” this year using resources from the Faith Practices Project. “I’ve looked at a ton of faith practices materials (and) curriculum, and (the) CRCNA’s offerings are the most usable by far,” said Jenna Campbell, director of children and youth ministry.
To encourage youth to engage each practice at home, they’re building faith practices journals with instructions for the meditating on Scripture (lectio divina) at the front. Each Sunday, they add a page to their journals with a description of the faith practice, a Scripture passage to engage, reflection questions with space for journaling or drawing, and a “practicing the practice” section where they commit to trying one or two practices during the week.
“I love how in (these) resources, it really narrows down the ‘why’ of faith practices: to love God and neighbor, to listen for the Spirit, and to be more like Jesus,” Campbell said.
Her hopes for how her church can engage faith practices capture the ethos of the project: “Those are our outcomes we’re hoping for—that reading the Bible, praying, serving, listening, etc., aren’t just things we do to check off a box and be a ‘good Christian,’ but it’s about a way of life that we pattern our lives around, those holy habits that move us out in the world, inspired by the Spirit to live and love like Jesus.”
Find resources for your context at crcna.org/FaithPracticesProject.