Last week I attended Preaching Camp.
Matthew and I, along with Todd, our Dean of Theology at Huron, were honoured to be included in the Episcopal Preaching Foundation’s Preaching Excellent Program (PEP) for Seminarians. While Todd was faculty and facilitated both small group workshops and teaching, Matthew and I were grouped into different preaching groups with six or seven other Episcopal seminarians from across the United States. Within our groups we preached sermons we had previously prepared for school or church placement contexts and then workshopped them together. These sessions were interspersed with plenary sessions from the likes of renowned preacher Tom Long and smaller group sessions on practical preaching tools taught by PEP faculty.
It was an incredibly rewarding experience. Not only was the retreat centre, the Roslyn Center of the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia, a beautiful facility with heartfelt hospitality, but our fellow preachers were amazing. Huron University College is a wonderful school and I enjoy studying there. However we rarely have the opportunity to dialogue with other Anglican/Episcopal seminarians. Here, we had dozens with whom we could toss around ideas about preaching and about the future of the church, with whom we could pray and sing, and with whom we could celebrate birthdays (that’s right – I celebrated my birthday in Virginia alongside a new friend from Yale Divinity).
A great big thank you to the Episcopal Preaching Foundation for including us in PEP this year – the first of what will hopefully be many to come for Canadian seminarians!