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Education for Ministry


This September (2023), a new year of Education for Ministry (EFM) will begin, and new participants are invited to join the program.  Learn more at the open house on Tuesday, August 22 at 7PM. Regular group meetings begin on September 19, 2023.

What is EFM?


EfM is a 4 -year small-group program that provides an education in the content of the Christian tradition. Participants are given weekly assignments to study with the help of the EfM Reading and Reflection Guide. In the seminar participants are invited to share their insights and discoveries as well as to discuss questions the study materials raise for them. Through discussion and guided reflection, the seminars furnish an opportunity to deepen your understanding of the reading materials.


More important is the development of skills in theological reflection. The goal is to learn to think theologically. In coming to terms with the notion that everything we do has potential for manifesting the love of Christ, we discover that our ministry is at hand wherever we turn.

The seminar is supported by a life of prayer and regular worship. EfM groups are encouraged to develop a pattern of worship appropriate to their situations. Liturgical materials are furnished with the course materials.

We read the Bible, commentaries, church history, and theology. We also explore the social and religious issues of the present day. Participants learn to live into their own theological beliefs and be an example of the heart and hands of Christ in their circles—family, friends, church, co-workers, and community.


EfM is administered by the University of the South and is open to all denominations.

Our group meets on Tuesday evenings, from 7-9, here at St. Matthew’s and through Zoom, from September through June. We worship and break bread together, as well as learn more about ourselves and our own spirituality. St. Matthew’s is under institutional sponsorship through the Diocese of Virginia so we pay a discounted fee of $325 for each year. 


Participants will need to purchase textbooks for their year of study (cost varies per year). You only need to commit to one year at a time and scholarships are available.


For more information, contact the group mentors, Sue Reier ( or Jane Garrett ( .

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