Faith Formation office announces lay ministry retreat


Marvin Edwards, lay ecclesial minister for Winona Sacred Heart Mission taught a class on lay reflecting in 2014. (Mississippi Catholic file photo)

Once a year the Office of Faith Formation invites pastors, lay ecclesial ministers, pastoral ministers, and other parish leaders to a retreat and workshop series as part of their continuing formation. This year the events will be at Lake Tiak O’kahata Sunday, June 7, through Thursday, June 11.
There are actually three events within the week, a two-day retreat, an optional extended retreat and a four-day workshop. The retreats follow the 2015 Catechetical theme “safeguarding the dignity of every human person.”
The workshops are part of a five-year certification program for lay ministers. Once someone starts working at a parish they apply to enter the Lay Ministry Formation program. Each year they take a workshop which builds on the one they took the year prior covering topics such as effective communications in ministry, balancing programs, canon law and more.
“One cannot overstate the value of this program for lay ministers in a diocese such as ours,” said Fran Lavelle, director of the Department of Faith Formation.
“The opportunity to meet, share, pray and learn with other Catholic lay people is in itself a great gift. We have folks who are sad when they complete the program because they value the community built over the five years,” she said.
Participants can register for different combinations of the three events. The cost of the Pastoral Ministries Retreat, which is from the afternoon of Sunday, June 7, at 3 p.m. through midday Monday, June 8, is $120.
The extended retreat, which begins Monday, June 8, after lunch through Thursday, June 11, after lunch, costs $400. A combination of the two retreats is available for a reduced rate of $485.


Edgar Hernández and Maureen Roberts provide music for the 2014 retreat. (Mississippi Catholic file photo)

The Pastoral Ministries Workshop which also begins Monday, June 8, after lunch is $500. Participants may combine the Sunday/Monday retreat with the Pastoral Ministries Workshop for a reduced combo rate of $585.
The cost includes lodging and meals. The department offers scholarships. Registrations are due by Friday, May 15. Download registration forms from the Faith Formation page on the website or contact Annette Stevenson, 601-960-8470,