Christian Formation

Christian Formation at St. Mary's is each Sunday morning from 10apm-10:50apm.  Our education  is aimed at lifelong growth in the knowledge, service and love of God as followers of Christ and is informed by Scripture, Tradition and Reason.

Adults meet in the Parish Hall, Sister's Chapel or Crypt (check schedule).  Children meet in the Moody Wing, and Youth meet in the Youth Room off the Crypt downstairs.  


Adult Formation at St. Mary's is each Sunday morning from 10 am-10:50 am (except when noted.)  

Classes meet in the Martyrs Hall and Sister's Chapel, as well as the Crypt.  

Our Fall 2015 offerings:


"Memphis Matters"

St. Mary’s has a vibrant history of justice and activism in our city of Memphis; Memphis matters! Come and see how we can partner with others to make this city greater! 

Aug. 30th Dean Mike Kinman, Christ Church Cathedral, St. Louis
Sept. 6th Katy Spurlock, Urban Child Institute
Sept. 13th Willy Bearden, “Reimagining our History: the Martyrs’ Story”
Sept. 20th Bishop Don Johnson, “Healthy Signs of a Vibrant Church in an Urban Area”
Sept. 27th Harry Durbin, Sr. VP for Faith and Health, Methodist Healthcare
Mauricia Calvo Oct. 4th Mauricio Calvo, Latino Memphis
Oct. 11th Canon Chip Davis, “Dreams for St. Mary’s and the Surrounding Neighborhood”
Oct. 25th George Clarke, Anna Holtzclaw, and Matt Morice, "St. Mary’s Finance 102"
Nov. 1st Dean Andy Andrews, "Sabbatical Report"
Nov. 8th Dean Andy’s Sabbatical Report, continued
Nov. 15th Tommy Pacello, U3 Advisors
Nov. 22nd Attitude of Gratitude: an Intergenerational Experience of Thanksgiving
Nov. 29th Advent Wreathmaking
Dec. 6th Annual Parish Meeting, no classes
Dec. 13th Sr. Maureen Griner, Dorothy Day House
Dec. 20th Kim Moss, Hospitality Hub
Dec. 27th no classes

"Short Series"

Intentional personal, family, and community-focused short series.
Join us for one or all!

Aug. 23rd & 30th, Sept. 6th

“Building the Family Sanctuary”
with Ron McDonald and Brad Thomas

In the age of anxiety, parenting seems especially full. Come and center as we discuss the vital aspects of child development, the stages of being a parent, all with a special Gandhian twist on discipline. We will sing a song or play a tune while telling stories to which we can all relate.

Sept. 13th & 20th

“Knocking on Heaven’s Door” with Scottie Brafford

With the Myers-Briggs Type Inventory (MBTI) as our guide, we’ll identify the spirituality that is native to your personality. This awareness can yield greater joy in our relationship with God and can help us cross thresholds of change with greater freedom. Join us as we consider how personality influences how we knock on Heaven’s door.

Sept. 27th

“The Stories of Genesis: The Intimate Connectedness of Humanity and Creation” with John Burruss

Oct. 4th, 11th, 18th and 25th; Nov. 8th & 15th

“Unplugging the Christmas Tree” with Laura & Josh Gettys

Come gather with Laura and Josh as we create a more joyful, less stressful and more value-centered Christmas celebration. You’ll walk away with an actual plan for how you and your family can make Advent and Christmas even more meaningful.

Dec. 13th & 20th

“Why was Jesus Born?” with Andy Andrews

Join the Dean as he unwraps the gift of the baby Lord Jesus. What is Christmas all about and why does it matter?

"Soul Stirrings"

Contemplative spirituality encompasses a wide range of experiences that share in common the effect of slowing us down, bringing more focus, and increasing our sense of well-being.

Join us as we explore the treasures of Christian contemplative prayer, opening thresholds to a deeper relationship with God. We’ll draw from a variety of disciplines, yet each will invite us to the inner stillness and receptive listening that helps us hear the quiet voice of God. 

Contemplative practices are more experiential than theoretical. They engage the body’s senses as a way of quieting our thinking functions, thereby stretching our souls in ways that were familiar long ago yet are new for many of us today. We’ll use music and art, draw maps and listen to poetry, awakening fresh possibilities in our life of prayer. 

Sunday’s topics and practices are not sequential - join us any Sunday - however the framework for each Sunday will be the same. After brief guidelines are offered, we will engage the practice usually in silence, and will conclude by responding to the practice and taking note of what God has stirred within us. 

A theme word drawn from the weekly scriptures will guide us each Sunday; those theme words are noted in italics on the schedule. The particular practice that will be used is named also. Leadership will be offered by teams of two.

Aug. 30th Heart : The Prayer of Examen
Sept. 6th Presence : Creating a Life Map
Sept. 13th Taproot :

Reflecting on Constance & Her Companions

Sept. 20th Attachments :

Yoga / body prayer


Sept. 27th Prayer :
Praying the Labyrinth
Oct. 4th Blessing : Praying with John O’Donahue’s poetry
Oct. 11th Tested : Ignatian discernment
Oct. 18th Troubles : Praying with spirituals
Oct. 25th Holy questions : Praying with icons
Nov. 8th Generosity : Praying with art
Nov. 15th Birthpangs : Art journaling
Nov. 25th Alpha, Omega. :
Praying the Labyrinth

Small Group Bible Study

Dr. Geoff Bakewell

Dr. Jerry Harber

If you’ve been waiting for a class devoted to small group Bible study and discussion, this is the adult formation option for you! Dr. Geoff Bakewell and Dr. Jerry Harber will lead the group’s study during fall Adult Formation. All are welcome to join and commit to this class for the duration of the fall semester. 

Geoff will begin by leading the group in a careful study of the book of Genesis starting August 30 and going through September 27, covering roughly 13 chapters of Genesis per session.  

From October 4 to November 22, Jerry will teach on parables focused on the “kingdom of God”, taking a deeper look at the life Jesus was calling his contemporaries to and what it means for us today.