How did you feel at the beginning of the module?
Several people in my church had spoken to me in the past about working towards the Bishops Certificate and my vicar told me last autumn that it was being revamped and re-launched. So, I had been looking out for the module invitations for some while. As a result, I was excited to get started deepening my studies. As the day approached I started to get nervous. I was worried about my lack of existing biblical knowledge, or that I wouldn’t be able to keep up.
How did you feel at the end of the module?
Largely I felt really confident and surrounded by God’s blessing. I met some great people, who really inspired me with their faith journey. And I learned so much. Each week I found something that we covered linked beautifully with other bible reading that I was doing. Overall I felt more secure in my faith and totally in awe of our amazing God.
What immediate benefits did you gain from the module?
I definitely had a much more mature and deeper understanding of the Bible and its relevance to my life. I found it eye opening and compelling to learn about the Ancient World. And was amazed to find how the stories and experiences of an ancient people can have resonance today. This knowledge gave me much more confidence when leading my Alpha small group and has given me a whole heap of resource to draw on to help people answer some of those trickier questions.
What impact do you feel this training has had on your personal journey of faith?
It has confirmed further the fact that I feel God calling me to a formal role in ministry. I have loved learning more about Him and my faith. And I am excited about finding opportunities to talk to people about all this new amazing stuff I know.
What impact, if any, will this training have on your role in your church ministry?
It has already improved the quality of the support I can give to my small group at Alpha. It has also helped me to grow in confidence, to the extent that I have now agreed to act as a prayer guide for another member of our congregation.
What impact, if any, will this module have on your mission and ministry beyond the Church?
It has become clear to me, over the course of the module – together with other reading I have been doing – that I need to do more to live out my Christian faith and to really take action. I’ve yet to feel drawn to specific action so am focusing on growing my own maturity until I can figure out exactly what it is God wants me to do to live out his purpose for me.
What do you think the wider impact of attending this workshop will be for Church?
There is a real opportunity to enliven and enrich the whole church, if those that attend the module take their learning back to their own churches.
What would you say to someone considering whether they should attend a module?
Really, don’t hesitate to try it. The content is delivered in an accessible way, with plenty of time to ask questions, formulate your own views and responses and to discuss these with others. I feel richer in many ways from taking part. You only need to commit to one 5 week block so it is easy to fit in with other commitments.