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As defined by CanonsA licensed catechist is called to lead in preparing people for membership in the church and to be a teacher of teachers. The catechist is a confirmed adult communicant in good standing authorized to prepare individuals for baptism, confirmation, reception, and the reaffirmation of baptismal vows. The catechist functions under the direction of the member of the clergy who oversees the congregation.

  • Personal qualities

    Ability to work collaboratively with other members of the parish and diocese for the good of the community. 

    While remaining sensitive to the diversity of attitudes, values, and conditions found within a congregation, show an understanding of the centrality of the critical interpretation of scripture to the Episcopal tradition 

    Deep relationship with God, a personal commitment to the mission of the church (parish and diocese), and a strong sense of calling to share in the ministry of the Word 

    Participation in Sunday Eucharist and the life of the parish community. 

    Ability to interact with both children and adults in a respectful and age-appropriate manner. 

    Ability and willingness to learn and implement the catechetical skills necessary for different age groups. 

    Evidence of a passion for learning more about such subjects as Old Testament, New Testament, church history, and theology – for example, through participating in EFM, DOCC, Disciple, or other similar programs; or through continuing education courses 

    Evidence of a passion for teaching

  • Formation considerations prior to licensing

    Contents and background of the Holy Scriptures (knowledge of the general historical outline and content of the Old and New Testaments and the Apocrypha) 

    Contents and history of the Book of Common Prayer (especially the Catechism) 

    Church history (development of the early church, history and key issues of the Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds, general development of Christian theology and doctrine) 

    Church doctrine as set forth in the creeds and “An Outline of the Faith,” commonly called the catechism, with particular reference to baptism and communion 

    A general knowledge of the canons, polity, structure, and decision-making processes in the Episcopal Church and Anglican Communion 

    Major methods of catechesis

  • Elements of training

    The Diocese of East Tennessee currently recognizes Bexley-Seabury’s Pathways for Baptismal Living Faith Formation for Leaders Training as the source for forming licensed lay catechists.  Click on the course name for dates and more details.

  • Renewal of license process

    A licensed lay Catechist will be licensed for up to 3 years at a time. Before 3 year has passed, the licensed lay Catechist should have: had opportunities to practice their ministry; received review of curriculums prior to teaching; continued to develop their skill and spirituality; and should receive an assessment of their good standing.  

    At this time, a member of the clergy with oversight and responsibility for this ministry can recommend that their license be renewed or that they pursue other ministries within the church and give room for others to practice this ministry.  

    Each year the diocese will request an updated roster of licensed Catechists for each parish and worshipping community. 

  • Community

    If you are a licensed lay Catechist or interested in following this group of lay ministers please join us on Facebook.