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What are the Stepwise themes?

Stepwise is made up of five broad learning streams which include topics and themes for individuals and groups to explore.

1. Faith-filled Life

Every Stepwise journey begins with Faith-filled Life – an essential introduction and preparation for the other streams.  It is a core introduction to Stepwise looking at identity, call and purpose.

Faith-filled Life is made up of seven key themes:

  • Why Stepwise?  An introduction to Faith-filled Life
  • Who am I? Exploring identity and faith
  • Where do I fit? How faith shapes our daily life
  • Where do I fit in my community?  Thinking more about God's mission in the world and how you are part of it.
  • My walk with God - what journey am I on?
  • Dealing with challenges? Building confidence and resilience for facing life's challenges
  • Which way now? Looking back and looking forward

Stream Outline

Faith-filled Life is for anyone who wants to develop and grow in their Christian faith and discipleship. It provides a foundation for exploring more deeply the call to discipleship in the 21st century and gives an introduction to the way Stepwise works.  It is also a requirement for the other Stepwise streams that Faith-filled Life is completed first.

Faith-filled Life is designed as an intergenerational learning experience for all ages and stages.  A willingness to engage with the material in the Stepwise Hub and participate in the group sessions is essential.

If you are interested in finding out more about how you can take part in this Stepwise stream then please get in touch with the Stepwise team by emailing stepwise@urc.org.uk

This leads, in any order to:

2. Faith-filled Worship

Exploring the breadth and depth of Christian Worship, building confidence and equipping you for leading and participating in worship.

The main aims of this stream are:

  • to explore the various building blocks of Christian worship
  • to consider worship, as an individual and in community, as a response to God’s love and faithfulness.
  • to think about how worship is a transformative activity where God is encountered and lives are changed.
  • to examine how to hear, interpret and share God’s word in scripture, prayer and preaching.
  • to look at how to create contextual, meaningful and inclusive worship.
  • to equip you for your discipleship journey and think about how worship is a central part of this.

Faith-filled Worship has twelve sessions in three phases. Sessions one to five cover the fundamentals of worship; sessions six to eight look at ways of engaging with God and sessions nine to twelve consider creativity and challenge in worship

  • What is Worship?
  • Seasons of Worship
  • Walking with Scripture
  • Working with Scripture
  • A Gathered People
  • Encounter with God
  • Communicating with God
  • Breaking Open the Word
  • Dance of the Spirit
  • Pushing Frontiers
  • Dare to be Different
  • Resourced as Disciples

Stream Outline 

Faith-filled Worship takes approximately 12 months to complete, going at the pace of the local group. Group meetings will take place approximately monthly. Between the group meetings you will also create a reflective journal and meet with a mentor – guidance for both of these activities is provided.

Faith-filled Worship is designed for anyone who is interested in learning more about worship as part of their journey of discipleship and for those who feel called to lead worship locally. As well as exploring the building blocks of worship participants will engage in some practical tasks and a group project to prepare and deliver an act of contextual and creative worship.

In order to begin Faith-filled Worship you will have previously completed Stepwise Faith-filled Life (see above). A willingness to engage with the material in the Stepwise Hub and participate in the group sessions is essential.

If you are interested in finding out more about how you can take part in this Stepwise stream then please get in touch with the Stepwise team by  emailing stepwise@urc.org.uk

3. Faith-filled Community

Looking with fresh eyes at your neighbourhoods and communities and exploring how your church can serve and bear witness to God’s love within them.

The main aims of this stream are:

  • to get to know your communities better using a variety of tools and techniques for effective community engagement.
  • to explore how God calls Christians to work within our communities and sends us out to join in with God’s work in the world.
  • to investigate some of the things that help communities to flourish and see how you, as a disciple of Jesus, can contribute to that flourishing.
  • to explore some biblical ideas about justice in society and look at ways that the church can be a positive agent for justice and change.
  • to examine new ways of being the church in your communities with examples from Fresh Expressions and pioneering Christian communities.
  • to work together with a group to initiate and develop a faith-based community project in your neighbourhood.

Faith-filled Community has 10 sessions broadly covering five different themes.

These themes are:

  • Getting to know your communities.
  • Missional communities – the call and the practice.
  • Flourishing communities and how to help create them.
  • Communities of justice.
  • Introducing fresh expressions and pioneering church communities.

Stream Outline

Faith-filled Community takes approximately 12 months to complete, going at the pace of the local group. Group meetings will take place approximately monthly. In between the group meetings you will also create a reflective journal and meet with a mentor – guidance for both of these activities will be provided.

Faith-filled Community is for anyone who wants to explore how to engage with their neighbourhood or the communities around them. A group from a local church would find the stream helpful as they would learn some of the fundamentals of community development thus equipping the church to better serve the communities in which it is set. Individuals would find it equally interesting to find out how they might make a difference in their own neighbourhood and communities.

In order to begin Faith-filled Community you will have previously completed Stepwise Faith-filled Life (see above). A willingness to engage with the material in the Stepwise Hub and participate in the group sessions is essential.

If you are interested in finding out more about how you can take part in this Stepwise stream then please get in touch with the Stepwise team by emailing: stepwise@urc.org.uk

4. Faith-fuelled Leadership

Learning how to lead effectively and sustainably with faith and vision.

Faith-fuelled Leadership is a 10-session programme which begins by helping you to build strong foundations for Christian leadership.  It goes on to help you develop key skills for leading well under pressure and for sustaining leadership over time.

Faith-fuelled Leadership is based on the CPAS Growing Leaders course but follows the Stepwise pattern of learning and reflection.

Stream Outline 

Faith-fuelled Leadership takes approximately twelve months to complete, going at the pace of the local group. Group meetings will take place approximately monthly.  Between the group meetings you will create a reflective journal and meet regularly with a mentor – guidance for both of these activities will be provided.

Faith-fuelled Leadership is designed for anyone who serves the church in any kind of leadership role– as an elder, local church leader, house-group leader etc. It will also be of interest to anyone who wants to explore the qualities and characteristics of Christian leadership in the workplace (i.e. non-church settings). It would be equally suitable for an individual or a group of leaders from one church or pastorate.

In order to begin Faith-fuelled Leadership you will have previously completed Stepwise Faith-filled Life (see above).  A copy of the Growing Leaders book (CPAS/BRF) will be required - this can be arranged through your group facilitator when you begin the stream.  A willingness to engage with the material in the Stepwise Hub and participate in the group sessions is essential.

If you are interested in finding out more about how you can take part in this Stepwise stream then please get in touch with the Stepwise team by emailing stepwise@urc.org.uk

5. Faith-filled Confidence

Building confidence and resilience in your own faith and building friendships across faiths.

The main aims of this stream are:

  • To develop confidence in your own faith within today’s culture
  • To have encounters with people from other Christian traditions and world faiths as well as with those of ‘no religion’
  • To use these encounters to build friendships across faiths and to better understand your faith in relation to others.
  • To become better equipped to share your faith story with others.
  • To develop ideas of how you can adopt what you have learned into your daily discipleship.

Faith-filled Confidence consists of ten sessions in three parts:

Part One: Your journey so far.

Reflecting on your hopes and expectations and preparing to step out on this new adventure.
Building on foundations - considering where you have confidence in your faith and identifying where further help is needed. This will include thinking about the beliefs you share with other participants and the place of those beliefs within today's world.

Part Two: Encounters.

Encountering the 'other' - as a learning experience. This will include engagement with people of other Christian traditions, other world faiths and those who profess no faith or religion. The aim is to discover what you treasure about your own faith, the similarities and differences with others, and to begin to express your own Christian beliefs.

Part Three: Confidence in practice.

This is where you consolidate your learning and begin to practice faith sharing with increased confidence in your church community and more widely.

Reflective process: The final stage is to reflect on how you have grown in faith confidence, and how this will influence your day to day discipleship in the wider world.

Stream Outline

Faith-filled Confidence takes approximately 12 months to complete, going at the pace of the local group. Group meetings will take place approximately monthly. In between the group meetings you will also create a reflective journal and meet with a mentor – guidance for both of these activities will be provided

Faith-filled Confidence is for anyone who would like to gain confidence in their faith whilst at the same time learning more about some other world faiths. The stream offers the opportunity to engage with those of other faiths and with those who profess no faith at all.

In order to begin Faith-filled Confidence you will have previously completed Stepwise Faith-filled Life (see above). A willingness to engage with the material in the Stepwise Hub and participate in the group sessions is essential.

If you are interested in finding out more about how you can take part in this Stepwise stream then please get in touch with the Stepwise team by  emailing: stepwise@urc.org.uk

 

United Reformed Church