2021 Bishop’s Academy

Rostered leadership can be exhausting. Our schedules are packed and emails pile up relentlessly. The demands on our time can hardly be contained as congregants expect us to be available 24/7. Even in normal times, we end up feeling like we can barely keep up the pace. During COVID-19, the epidemic of busyness facing pastors has intensified. Now, perhaps more than ever before, we need to re-discover the biblical concept of Sabbath and how it can reorient our lives around God’s rest and rejuvenating love.

All Metro D.C. synod rostered ministers are invited to the 2021 Bishop’s Academy, a series of online sessions to explore the purpose, place, and practice of Sabbath in faith formation and rostered leadership. We will explore Sabbath as divine gift—a disruptive and daring invitation to experiment with meaningful play, restorative rest, sensual holiness, communal feasting, and social justice.

January 13 – February 10
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Every Wednesday

$125 covers all five sessions
and 1 CEU through Candler School of Theology

Each teaching session will be interactive, including biblical study, pair-and-share activities, small group reflection, and open Q&A. No reading is required, though a recommended list of books for further study will be provided.

Topics to be Covered Include:

  • Popular misconceptions about the Sabbath
  • The historical and theological context of the Sabbath commandment in the Old Testament
  • The subsequent interpretation of the Sabbath in the New Testament and Christian theology
  • The relationship between Sabbath keeping and social justice
  • The role of Sabbath in our spiritual formation
  • Principles for being a 24/6 pastor

Special emphasis will be place on practical ways in which we can cultivate Sabbath keeping in our everyday lives and spiritual disciplines.

What We Hope to Accomplish

The goal of this series is to explore the purpose, place, and practice of Sabbath in faith formation and pastoral leadership. In doing so, we will come to understand the ancient practice of Sabbath keeping as more than just a good idea for managing busyness or taking time off. Rather, we will explore Sabbath as divine gift—a disruptive and daring invitation to experiment with meaningful play, restorative rest, sensual holiness, communal feasting, and social justice.

Our Presenter – Dr. Ryan Bonfiglio

Dr. Bonfiglio is an Assistant Professor in the Practice of Old Testament at Emory’s Candler School of Theology. He also is the Director of The Candler Foundry, an initiative designed to make theological education accessible and engaging for the broader public. 

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