Adult Faith Formation
What could adult faith formation look like in the twenty-first century? What insights should inform us and guide the development of adult faith formation for the four stages of adulthood: young adults, midlife adults, mature adults, and older adults? How do we engage all the seasons of an adult’s life in the lifelong journey of discipleship and faith growth—a process of experiencing, learning, and practicing the Christian faith as we seek to follow Jesus and his way in today’s world. And how can we develop an approach that provides a platform for reaching every adult in our faith communities and in the wider community?
The answers to these questions can be found in the holistic vision of faith and faith forming processes, in the eight features that can guide the development of twenty-first century faith formation, and in a network model of faith formation that provides a way to reach all adults throughout the seasons of adulthood. This section of the website and the book, The Seasons of Adult Faith Formation, provides a deeper understanding of adulthood today, a vision of twenty-first century adult faith formation, and the tools and processes for designing faith formation for all the seasons of adulthood.
Future of Adult Faith Formation Scenarios & Strategies
From October 1-3, 2015 over 100 faith formation leaders from across the U.S. and Canada gathered in Connecticut to explore the future of adult faith formation at a symposium convened by LifelongFaith Associates. The participants were guided through a scenario planning process to create four scenarios for the future of adult faith formation in congregations and to design strategies for using the scenarios for new initiatives and projects in adult faith formation. We have produced the following resources:
Adult Life Stage Faith Formation
Adult Faith Formation Principles
From research studies, current thinking and practice in adult education and learning, and contemporary theory and practice in faith formation, we can identify eight features that provide the foundations upon which to build a twenty-first century approach to adult faith formation for all of the seasons of adulthood. (From Chapter One in The Seasons of Adult Faith Formation)
Adult Faith Formation Practices
Here are ten Guides for developing adult faith formation programming that reflects current research and practice in adult learning and the key features of twenty-first century faith formation. These ten guides serve as a foundation for designing adult faith formation programs, activities, and resources in physical and online spaces. (From Chapter Eight in The Seasons of Adult Faith Formation)
Adult Spiritual Formation: Nurturing Adults in Christ and for Others - Jim Merhaut
This essay explores the meaning of spirituality for adults, and presents strategies for integrating faith formation programs within the broader context of spiritual formation.
GEMS - Best Practices in Adult Faith Formation - Janet Schaeffler
These newsletters report on the results of an international study on best practices in adult faith formation.
What Are We Learning about Adult Faith Formation - Janet Schaeffler
This article draws upon research on effective practices in adult faith formation by presenting signs of growth (effective practices) and challenges for the future adult faith formation.
Adult Faith Formation Design
In the twenty-first century, adult faith formation is developed in a network model. On the network people can experience the life and substance of the Christian faith in a way that expands both the content and environments and can be personalized and customized to their life and faith journey. The fundamental operating system and delivery system for faith formation is now the network and it is built on a digital platform (website). (See Chapter Nine in The Seasons of Adult Faith Formation.)
Network Planning Process for Adult Faith Formation
Step 1. Prepare a statement of your church’s vision and goals for adult faith formation
Step 2. Develop a profile of adult faith formation
Step 3. Research your target audience and identify needs
Step 4. Build the adult faith formation network design
Step 5. Generate programming for the adult faith formation network
Step 6. Design a season of adult faith formation programming
Step 7. Build the digital platform—an adult faith formation website
Step 8. Design a process for assessing and personalizing learning
Step 9. Test the seasonal plan and web design
Step 10. Launch the adult faith formation network
Step 11. Evaluate the season of adult faith formation programming
Step 12. Design the new season of adult faith formation programming