Grace Cathedral

Grace Cathedral

Article | February 2, 2024

Congregation Update: Journeying Together

Blog|Steph McNally

Dear friends, 

How do our relationships with each other shape our relationship with God? 

Our Choral Evensong last week celebrated the life and work of Florence Li Tim-Oi, the first woman ordained to the priesthood in the Anglican Communion. The Rev. Dr. Paula Nesbitt shared in her sermon that this was made possible by both Li Tim-Oi’s faith and courage and the faith and courage of those who supported her, from the rector and congregants at her church who saw a priest in their midst to the bishop who broke with tradition to ordain her to the priesthood.  

“A call is personal, but not solitary,” the Rev. Dr. Nesbitt observed. “Our calls are linked to others.” 

We are all called to draw closer to God. We experience this call in different ways, each deeply personal. However, we don’t need to undertake this journey alone. Our church teaches that Christian formation is “a lifelong process of growing in relationship with God, self, others, and all creation.” The work of knowing God is not a solitary undertaking but a journey to be shared. 

Grace Cathedral has several formation opportunities planned for 2024. 

This Lenten season, adults and youth discerning calls to baptism, confirmation, and reception will be undertaking preparation classes hosted at Grace. Together, participants will listen for the voice of the Spirit in Scripture, liturgy, and the actions of our church’s prophetic leaders, those who, like Florence Li Tim-Oi, help us understand God’s dream of the beloved community. As a graduate of the adult class of 2018, I can attest that powerful formation will take place through participants sharing their stories, beliefs, doubts, questions, and epiphanies with each other. 

In a time when we constantly hear about the decline of the church, it is wonderful to share that we are anticipating one of the largest adult cohorts in this class for a long time. This reflects the work of the many ordained and lay leaders who have contributed to this series, including current lay leaders Roberta Sautter and Robert Ward. It also reflects how our desire to be in a relationship with God is mirrored by a desire to be in a relationship with others.  

Grace Cathedral’s class for adults preparing for baptism, confirmation, or reception begins on Sunday, February 18, and all who feel called are warmly invited to register online.

Grace’s youth confirmation class begins on Sunday, February 25, and parents of those interested are invited to email me

As God’s people, we are all invited to a life of “continuous learning,” as the Episcopal Church’s “Charter for Lifelong Christian Formation” suggests. There are many ways to undertake this journey of learning at Grace.  

Upcoming opportunities include the Rev. Dr. Greg Kimura’s series on Buddhism and its relationship to Christianity on Sunday, February 4 and 18, and Joanne and Richard Compean’s book study of “Together” by Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy, MD, on Sunday, February 11 and 18. 

The 4 pm Book Study on Zoom begins its spring series with a study of Barbara Brown Taylor’s “The Luminous Web” on Sunday, February 11, while the Thursday Morning Bible Study continues its journey through the Gospel of Mark.

We will continue to update our Classes for Adults page with formation opportunities throughout the year. We are so grateful for all that you bring to our shared journey! 

With gratitude, 

Steph McNally 
Formation Programs Manager for Children, Youth, Families, and Adult 

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