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Click HERE to register for 2016-17 Confirmation Classes at Bethany!
To Download the entire, 2016-17 Confirmation section of this webpage in a handy-dandy, easy-to-read Handbook (PDF format), please click HERE.
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What is Faith Formation?
- Faith Formation is an intentional life-long process of equipping, empowering and unleashing people for an ever deepening relationship with Jesus Christ through worship, learning, service, prayer, community and life experience in order to live out one’s Baptismal calling.
What is Growing Together in God’s Promise?
- Growing Together in God’s Promise is the mission of Bethany’s Faith Formation Ministries. Our goal is to uphold our baptismal promises, as we continue to learn and grow in our faith and relationships with Christ.
What is LIFT: Living In Faith Together?
- LIFT is Bethany’s Confirmation program. We will focus on how we live in faith, both individually and as a community.
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the Fulfillment of Promises: It is a time for parents of adolescents to fulfill the promises made at baptism, in partnership with the whole faith community. They promise to:
“live with them among God’s faithful people, bring them to the word of God and the holy supper, teach them the Lord’s Prayer, the Creed, and the Ten Commandments, place in their hands the holy scriptures, and nurture them in faith and prayer, so that your children may learn to trust God, proclaim Christ through word and deed, care for others and the world God made, and work for justice and peace.” Service of Holy Baptism, Evangelical Lutheran Worship, (Augsburg Fortress, © 2006), page 228
Faith Formation: It is a time to learn about to whom we belong, who Jesus is, and how faith in Him impacts us. Confirmation helps prepare and support us for life’s journey as adult Christians.
Relationships: It is a time to experience God’s love by building caring connections with parents, mentors, and peers. It is a commitment of the whole family to grow together, support one another and encourage one another to trust in a God who loves us, cares for us and forgives us.
Discipleship: It is a time in the adolescent faith journey for intensive nurturing, a time of preparation leading to public profession of Christian faith and for youth to “confirm” their intention to live as a Child of God in the covenant of Baptism:
“Do you intend to continue in the covenant God made with you in Holy Baptism: to live among God’s faithful people, to hear the Word of God and share in the Lord’s supper, to proclaim the good news of God in Christ through word and deed, to serve all people, following the example of Jesus, and to strive for justice and peace in all the earth?” Affirmation of Baptism, Evangelical Lutheran Worship, (Augsburg Fortress, © 2006), page 236.
a Step on the life-long Journey of Faith: It is NOT a journey toward a “graduation,” but another step on the life-long journey of faith that extends from birth to death, which is why we call this faith formation.
***SPECIAL NOTE: Confirmation is not a sacrament in the Lutheran church, and is therefore not ‘required’. It is an optional series of worship, lessons, service, relationships, and fellowship that help enrich and strengthen our student’s faith lives. We are transitioning the program to a more flexible format, based on prayerful consideration with our families. We hope that this will equip families to uphold expectations and requirements honoring the commitment to the best of their abilities.
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What is Confirmation at Bethany?
- Confirmation is the affirmation of baptism! Confirmation is a time for students to delve into the promises their parents made at baptism and explore different ways to continue to live out these promises.
- LIFT, the Confirmation program at Bethany, is a family program. Parents are expected to actively participate to affirm and create the fullest experience for their child. Families are expected to attend worship together regularly, and be involved in their kids learning and growing faith life.
- LIFT is for students 6th grade and older. You may start the program at any time after entering 6th grade, and complete it on your own schedule.
- All are welcome to attend courses and classes at Bethany! If you are not a part of the Confirmation program, you are still invited to attend any class meetings during any of the times offered.
- Confirmation is offered on Wednesday evenings and Sunday mornings. While students are welcome to attend every session, they need not attend where scheduling difficulties preclude.
- Confirmation on Wednesdays starts with Worship from 6:30-7:15 pm, and small group courses from 7:15-8:30 pm.
- Confirmation on Sundays starts with Worship from 8:30-9:40 am, and small group courses from 10:00-11:15am.
- There are four 6-week sessions offered over the course of the year.
- Session 1: August 28-October 5
- Session 2: October 30-December 14
- Session 3: January 18-February 26
- Session 4: March 12-April 30
- During off-session times, there will be time for fellowship and service. Students should continue to attend Worship with their family over the course of the entire year.
- Bethany uses a combination of curriculum to form courses. Curriculum is chosen based on the course and provides interactive and engaging lessons for students. Curriculum used includes: original Bethany curriculum, outside resources, Congregation members passions and skills, and Augsburg Fortress’s Colaborate
- Small group courses are designed to build relationships while learning, growing, and discussing faith and the topics that surround it. Each course will look slightly different, but all courses provide a foundation for learning and an opportunity to build relationships with peers and authentic, available and affirming adults.
- Bethany’s program covers the Sacraments, Lutheran theology, the Small Catechism, Lutheran history, faith concepts through stories from the New and Old Testaments, and how to live out your faith life. Students also have the opportunity to learn and grow in their faith through elective courses that interest or challenge them.
- Learning materials provided: NRSV Lutheran Study Bible, Luther’s Small Catechism, and any materials needed for small group courses.
Download the entire 2016-17 Confirmation Calendar HERE.
Download the 2016-17 Confirmation Course Schedule HERE.
Program Breakdown and Expectations
- Students are expected to attend all classes during a session. If you know that you will miss 2 or more classes during a session, please sign up for another time or wait until the next session starts. We understand that life happens sometimes (and grace is such a wonderful gift); we will work with families if situations arise where students are not able to attend all the classes during a session.
- Students are required to complete 15 credits before being confirmed. This includes….
- 8 Core Credits AND 4 Elective Credits AND 3 Experiential Credits. DETAILS BELOW.
- 8 Core Credits: These classes must be taken by every student. This includes a comprehensive overview of the Sacraments, Lutheran theology, the Small Catechism, and faith concepts through stories from the Old and New Testament. Students will also learn about Lutheran history and how it relates to other religions around the world. They will conclude their Confirmation experience by learning about their own spiritual gifts and how to use those gifts in the congregation, community, and beyond. These courses include:
- Old Testament: Law/History
- Old Testament: Wisdom/Prophets
- New Testament: Gospel/Acts
- New Testament: Epistles
- Lutheran Theology: Sacraments
- Lutheran Theology: Small Catechism
- Religious Studies
- Confirmation Project
- The Confirmation Project is a capstone opportunity for students to learn more about spiritual gifts, find out what their own spiritual gifts are, and how to use them to glorify God. Students will partner with a mentor of their choosing, learn about each of their spiritual gifts, and complete a project together. The Confirmation Project will be a project that the student designs to help them learn how to carry on their faith past the conclusion of Confirmation. Mentors will help and guide the student through the project as both individuals continue to learn and grow with one another. This will be a first step in helping students continue their faith formation well beyond Confirmation.
Core classes are on a 2-year cycle, and half of the classes will be offered each year. The Confirmation Project will be offered at any time, allowing students to finish their Confirmation classes when they are ready.
- 4 Elective Credits: Students choose a minimum of 4 elective courses to earn these credits. These courses are created to help students experience faith from a different perspective and help students grow in their relationship with Christ through the way they learn best. These courses are mainly interest-based, and allow students any opportunity to choose what they would like to learn more about. Elective courses will change each year, and offerings will be provided in the course descriptions and calendar.
- 3 Experiential Credits: Experiential credits are gained through experiences our students have. These include: camp, retreats, the Rocky Mountain Synod Middle School Youth Gathering, mission trips, volunteering at Day Camp, Student Service Days, and other service opportunities throughout the year. Experiential credits encourage our students to start living out faith in their daily lives. Students step out beyond the church walls and into their communities as they continue to develop and grow in their faith.
- Sky Ranch Confirmation Camp=2 credits
- Senior High Summer Trip=2 credits
- RMS MSYG=1 credit
- Weekend Retreats=1 credit
- Day Camp Volunteer=1 credit
- 3 In-House Service Projects=1 credit
The combination of these different types of credits is created for Confirmation students to learn more about their faith life and deepen their relationship with Christ. It combines learning, exploring, doing, and becoming! Our intention at Bethany is to equip our students to carry on their faith and stay connected with the church beyond Confirmation. We prayerfully believe and trust that a balance of these things will equip our students to do so.
- Cost for courses will be $15/course for core and elective courses. Costs will cover curriculum, supplies, activities, and take-home material. These costs will also cover the NRSV Bible given to every Confirmation student, as well as costs associated with the Affirmation of Baptism Service and the Dinner of Honor. Cost for experiential credits will be based upon individual activities.
- Students are required to acolyte 3 times per year, including summers. Students will choose the Sundays they acolyte during the Registration Fair on Wednesday, August 24th.
My Faith Retreat
- All youth being confirmed in Fall 2017 of the program year are required to attend the My Faith Retreat on Sunday, August 27th, 2017. Students will meet with one of the Pastors, Faith Formation staff, Confirmation teachers, or Church Leadership members to discuss their Confirmation journey and their personal faith. Students will also engage in various opportunities to continue their involvement with Bethany after they leave the Confirmation program.
- The Rite of Confirmation or Affirmation of Baptism is the second Sunday in October the fall of the year the program is completed. Confirmation weekend in 2017 is October 7 & 8. The weekend begins on Saturday late afternoon with a final rehearsal and Dinner of Honor. The Rite of Confirmation is Sunday at the 10:00 service.
Core Courses (8 credits; must attend all classes)
- Old Testament: Law/History: The history of God’s people has many stories of how they did and sometime did not adhere to God’s expectations. In this class we look at the first half of the Old Testament including the first five books called the books of the Law. Then we also look at the stories of God’s people through the history books. Find out why we observe some laws, but not others, and how God upheld laws in the Old Testament.
- Old Testament: Wisdom/Prophets: What does it mean to be a prophet? Bearing God’s message to God’s people hasn’t always been an easy feat. Take a chance to delve into Old Testament books to learn more about the prophets and wisdom shared throughout.
- New Testament: Gospel/Acts: Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and Acts contain the stories of Jesus and the start of the early church. Learn more about our Lord’s life as recounted by his early faithful followers and how those stories inform your life of faith today.
- New Testament: Epistles: Delve into the letters written by the Apostle Paul and others in the New Testament as we discuss topics that create our foundation of Christian faith.
- Lutheran Theology: Sacraments: Called the ‘means of grace,’ baptism and communion are important parts of our journeys of faith. Take some time to learn about what sacraments are, why we celebrate them, and what they mean to us.
- Lutheran Theology: Small Catechism: Why did Martin Luther write the Small Catechism? The Ten Commandments, Lord’s Prayer, and Apostles’ Creed must be pretty important. This class takes a closer look at these pivotal statements in forming our faith.
- Religious Studies: Where we are called to love our neighbor, what about when our neighbor believes differently than ourselves? In this course we will look at where the Lutheran church has its origins and make comparisons with other religions.
- Confirmation Project: Your journey of faith continues beyond confirmation. To equip you to do that, we offer this course where we intend for you to learn about your spiritual gifts and how to use them. Central to this course is your partnership with a mentor and using your gifts to create a final Confirmation Project!
***courses in RED are offered this programmatic year
- Confirmation Weekend Retreat: 1 credit; October 21st-23rd we will head up to Sky Ranch Lutheran Camp, outside Fort Collins, to spend a weekend in retreat. We will explore faith, enjoy God’s beautiful creation, and get a taste of camp as we delve into Sky Ranch’s theme for the year.
- RMS Middle School Youth Gathering: 1 credit; This year we are headed up to Loveland, CO January 13th-15th to learn how we can turn walls into doors. We will take part in celebrating the 500th anniversary of the Reformation as we worship, learn, serve, and play with others from our Rocky Mountain Synod!
- Healthy Relationships Weekend Retreat: 1 credit; Conversations about healthy relationships with yourself, peers, significant others, parents, and God can be tough! We would like to take some time to initiate conversations and create spaces for parents to engage in these talks with their students! This weekend retreat, March 3rd-4th, is for both STUDENTS AND PARENTS!
- Confirmation Camp at Sky Ranch: 2 credits; July 23rd-28th we are headed up to Sky Ranch Lutheran Camp for their Confirmation Camp! We explore faith through multiple worships, devotions, hikes, high ropes, and other camp activities! Each day we get time to spend together as a congregation as we continue to develop relationships with one another as we process how the week is impacting our relationship with Christ!
- Senior High Summer Trips: 2 credits; If you are or will be in high school in 2017, you are invited to join in on our Senior High Summer Trips. Each year there will be multiple opportunities, including a week at Rainbow Trail Lutheran Camp. Please contact Jason Davis (email@example.com) for more information!
- Day Camp Volunteer: 1 credit; Join us in summer 2017 for Day Camp! We have tons of preschool-5th grade students join us for a week of singing, dancing, playing, creating, learning, and exploring our faith! And we need plenty of volunteers to help us! Join us for a week as a volunteer to get in on the fun.
- Service Projects: attending 3=1 credit; A great way to grow in your faith and learn about Christ is through service! We will have a variety of opportunities throughout the year to do so! This includes our quarterly Student Service Days where we will go into our community to work and serve alongside our peers. There will also be other opportunities that arise throughout the year to serve our congregation here at Bethany! Emails will be sent out as they become available!
Elective Courses (4 credits, 1 credit each)
- Health and Wellness: Students AND parents, this one’s for you! We will be covering some meaningful, and sometimes difficult, topics throughout our six weeks together. Join us as we explore our own physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual health and wellness. We will have speakers presenting on physical health, spiritual wellness, healthy relationships, mental health, etc. We ask that parents and students attend this course together, and engage in discussion after!
- Faith through Art: Come find out how you can explore and express your personal faith through art. We will be doing individual and group art projects as we learn more about Christ and the gifts He has given us through art.
- Book Club: Wonder, by R.J. Palacio is a New York Times Bestseller. The book teaches us how there is always more than one side to a story as we learn about empathy, compassion, and love. This Book Club will be open to all congregation members and will give us an opportunity to explore our faith and hear different perspectives as we dive into and discuss the book. Our different ages, outlooks, and experiences will be vital! (books will be provided for course)
- Plugging into Worship: Have you ever wondered what goes on in a Worship service on Sunday morning? Now is a chance to find out! We will learn all about the different areas where congregation members plug into Worship, including: ushering, sacristaning, communion assistants, lectors, assisting minister, altar guild, etc. These words might not make sense now, but soon will as we hear from leaders in our community and get some hands-on experiences!
- Stretch and Pray: Each week we will learn how to deepen our prayer experiences through stretching, meditation, and yoga. We will unwind from a busy week, leave our stresses at the door, and open our hearts and minds to God.
- Team Builders: Games! Devotions! Relationships! We are set out to build a community as we do some team building activities for 6 weeks. Be prepared to have some fun, share your faith, and build relationships with your peers and caring adults.
- Mentoring: Here’s a chance to partner with an adult in the congregation or community as we explore faith and deepen relationships. Mentoring pairs will all meet together in a large group to talk about our topic for the week and then break into pairs as we do devotion, check-ins, and activities together.
- TBD: To be determined…by you! Have you been wanting to learn about something and haven’t had an opportunity? Do you have a great idea for an elective course? Adults, do you have a passion or calling that you would like to share with our youth? Now’s your chance! This course will be organically made by input from you all!
Session 1 Rooms and Teachers
Old Testament: Room 401
New Testament: Room 403
Lutheran Theology: Room 404
Health and Wellness: Soul Schopp (Room 415/416)
Religious Studies: Youth Room (Room 412)
Faith through Art: Soul Schopp (Room 415/416)
Bethany’s Faith Formation Team and Pastors
Tory Plucheck, Faith Formation Minister of Confirmation: firstname.lastname@example.org
Janice Lyon, Faith Formation Program Assistant: email@example.com
Jason Davis, Faith Formation Minister of Senior High: firstname.lastname@example.org
Gayle Newell, Director of Children’s Ministry: email@example.com
Brigette Weier, Pastor of Faith Formation: firstname.lastname@example.org
Paula Wills, Worship on Wednesday Coordinator: email@example.com
Russ Britton, Pastor of Congregational Ministries: firstname.lastname@example.org
Gary Sandberg, Lead Pastor: email@example.com
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