Youth Christian Formation
(follow this link to youth page) St. James has a renewed emphasis on our ministries for our youth in grades 6-12. The knowledge and love of Jesus Christ is a critical foundation for young people to have in facing the unique issues of adolescence today. We have special church-year related programs (Advent Wreath Making, Christmas Pageant, Easter Party, etc.) for our youth throughout the year designed to incorporate them into our worship and the special feast days during the church year. We also look to do more with area youth groups in Eufaula and beyond in special events, including mission oriented trips with neighboring Episcopal Church youth groups. We also channel our youth into diocesan-wide events at our Episcopal camp Beckwith in Fairhope, Alabama.
On Sunday mornings beginning at 9:15 am, our youth gather in our "youth loft" for Christian Education. We usually take the lectionary readings for the day and discuss how they relate to our lives. We discuss current events and other issues in the context of the readings. This is an informal group gathering where we share comments and ideas and generally talk about life.
A new Youth Bible Study begins in the spring of 2019. We will meet in the home of a parishioner and discuss issues of life and faith in the context of Holy Scripture.
Children's Christian Formation
(follow this link to our Children's page) We offer Children's Christian Education and Children's Chapel on Sunday mornings. We also offer programs throughout the year giving our children an opportunity to learn the stories of our faith and apply them in their own lives.
On Sunday mornings, a team of teachers join together to tell the stories of our faith to our children during the Christian Education time starting at 9:15 am on Sundays during the school year. We combine several curriculum designed to engage the imagination of our children to explore what characters in the Bible are saying. In addition to reading the story from Holy Scripture, we incorporate several methods of telling the story including video, crafts and other activities. This class also stresses the fundamentals of Christian formation for this age group including the Lord's Prayer, the Ten Commandments, etc.
Growing in Grace - Confirmation Class
[Youth and Adult] -- Do you want to know more about the Episcopal Church? Are you new to Christianity and long to know more about beliefs and origins? Have you been an Episcopalian for most of your life, but continue to have questions about why we do what we do? Growing in Grace is the St. James class designed to explore our Christian faith and how we live that our in the Episcopal Church and the world. We look at our faith, history, beliefs and worship. We answer many of your "why do we do that" questions. This class prepares adults and youth for Confirmation and Reception. It is also a great class for those exploring Christianity and the Episcopal Church.
Confirmation is designed for all baptized members who, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, are ready to make a public affirmation of faith before God, the Bishop of our diocese and the congregation. Don't worry - we will prepare you and you will make this affirmation with a group of other adults and youth. This If you are already confirmed you can take the class and be Received into the Episcopal Church. Reception is for those who have already been confirmed in the Roman Catholic, Lutheran or Orthodox traditions and desire to become an Episcopalian.
This class meets over a period of 12 classes in preparation for baptism, confirmation or reception. This course, led by clergy and lay leaders, begins every January and meets on Sunday mornings in the parish hall beginning at 9:15 a.m. We meet in as a group and then break into tables for discussion (youth have their own table).
St. James offers intergenerational educational activities throughout the church year where all gather (children, youth and adults) for an intergenerational class. This usually involves an activity. Examples are our All Saints' Day Intergenerational where we learn about All Hallows Eve, All Saints and engage a craft of remembrance. Another is our Advent Intergenerational class where we make Advent wreaths.
Wednesday Bible Study
St. James has a Bible Study each Wednesday following the 12:10 Holy Eucharist. This group meets in the Parish Library. The group looks at the readings for the coming Sunday and discusses them in the context of the readings themselves as well as modern life. We have the class while we eat a brown bag lunch, so bring your lunch and a hunger for discussion about Holy Scripture and join us.
Adult Sunday Forum
The Sunday Adult Forum meets each Sunday at 9:15 a.m. in the Adult Christian Education room. This group reads and discusses the lectionary readings for Sunday, as well as seasonal materials designed to explore issues of faith. Clergy and class members present materials and facilitate discussion.
Lenten Luncheon Speaker Series
Each Wednesday during Lent, St. James hosts a Lenten Luncheon Series. Speakers from throughout our region join us for lunch, where they provide some "food for thought" on a chosen topic for the year. This is not limited to Episcopalian speakers and the speakers often include pastors from neighboring churches of all denominations. We invite the entire community for this ecumenical event. This year's theme is "Thy Will be Done."
Workshops and Special Series
St. James offers special forums, classes and workshops at various times during the year to assist us in our journey as disciples of Jesus Christ. This Lent we have plans to present a workshop on the Labyrinth as a spiritual tool of meditation and prayer. Check out this website, our calendar and newsletter for more information.