Education for Ministry

Education for Ministry

Every baptized person is called to ministry. The Education for Ministry program provides an opportunity for laypersons to study scripture, church history and theology in support of their Christian faith and ministry.

EFM is a worldwide program developed by the School of Theology of the University of the South, an Episcopal Seminary in Sewanee, TN. This program is based on the belief that the foundation for bringing Christ to the world lies in a Church that is empowered by an active and theologically articulate laity.

Thousands of persons in the Episcopal Church and in other denominations have completed this four-year program. Our Parish has a long and proud history of participation in EFM over more than 30 years. We estimate the number of current parishioners at St. Michael’s with EFM experience is approaching 100.

The EFM program is a four-year course of study, with classes meeting for two and a half hours,
once a week, during the months of September through May. There is a tuition charge for the program but the parish has scholarship assistance available to reduce the cost.

In the first year of study, we cover the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament); in the second year we continue the biblical study and move to the Christian Testament (New Testament); the third year covers the History of the Christian Church; and year four focuses on Theology and World Religions.

The current textbooks used in the EFM curriculum are:
Year One – A Short Introduction to the Hebrew Bible by John Collins (Yale Divinity School)

Year Two – Introducing the New Testament by Mark Allan Powell (Trinity Lutheran Seminary)

Year Three – Christianity: The First Three Thousand Years by Diarmaid McCulloch (Oxford University)

Year Four – Theology for a Troubled Believer by Diogenes Allen (Princeton Theological Seminary) and The Christian Moral Life by Timothy Sedgwick (Virginia Theological Seminary)

You can read more about the EFM program at the website of the University of the South at

For more information about EFM at St. Michael's, please contact any of the mentors.