Disciple Online Groups Forming

August 19, 2010

Groups are beginning to take shape for the second year of online Disciple Bible Study, dubbed Disciple Online. Enrollment is open at www.BeADisciple.com/discipleonlinecourses for individuals who wish to participate in Disciple I, Disciple II, and Youth Disciple in an online format, taking part with others from around and outside this country. 

Participants follow the standard Disciple format: Study the Bible on their own during the week, then meet with their group members at a set day and time to review the week's study – only with Disciple Online it's done through the Internet.   
The Rev. Mark McDonald, pastor of First United Methodist Church of Jacksonville, Arkansas, led one of the first five groups which launched Disciple Online one year ago. "Experiencing relationships without seeing one another, in Disciple Online, has removed many of the pretenses and assumptions that we make. When sitting with a person, we can judge their body language, but we aren't always correct in our judgment. Online, we have to be even more clear with our communication, so our group learned to be more expressive (LOL, jk, brb, etc.). But we also formed relationships without seeing a person, and that made us rely on who they are, rather than how they appear to be!"  
Although this will be the second year for Disciple Online, it is the first year for Disciple Online II and Disciple Online Youth. Several churches are sponsoring groups for their own members which also are open to participants from elsewhere. FUMC Jacksonville, for instance, will offer all three courses. For more information, visit www.BeADisciple.com or email BeADisciple@sckans.edu.
Disciple Bible Study and Disciple Online are programs of The Richard and Julia Wilke Institute for Discipleship.  
Wesley Ministry Network to Offer Fall Selection of Online Classes with BeADisciple.com
In addition to offering Disciple Online, BeADisciple.com is joining together in partnership with the Wesley Ministry Network (www.wesleyministrynetwork.com) to bring quality online educational opportunities to Christian leaders. This fall there are five online study choices, beginning September 13, 2010:
A Life Worthy of the Gospel – This eloquent, challenging and inspiring six-week introduction to Christian ethics avoids pat answers and simplistic lists of do's and don'ts for living a life worthy of the Gospel.
In God's Time: The Bible and the Future – This class encourages Christians both to take seriously and to think sensibly about the hope of God's ultimate victory. It is a relatively advanced course that will appeal most to people who have a background in biblical studies, such as completion of the first year of the Disciple Bible Study course.
Simply Christian – This course offers a fresh presentation of the timeless truths of Christianity.
Devotion to Jesus: The Divinity of Christ in Early Christianity – This course takes on revisionist accounts of how and when the first Christians came to believe in Jesus as the divine son of God.
Religion and Science: Pathways to Truth – In this groundbreaking series, more than a dozen leading scientists, theologians, and philosophers explore the contrasts and similarities between religion and science.
Bishop Richard Wilke says, "I highly recommend Wesley Ministry Network courses as the perfect follow-up to DISCIPLE Bible study. The content is superb and the combination of print, video, and Internet communication is dynamic."
Follow the link of the title that interests you, or look at all of the upcoming Wesley Ministry Network courses by CLICKING HERE.
Advanced Courses in Lay Speaking Ministries for the UMC
Several times a year, BeADisciple.com hosts online courses which have been approved by the General Board of Discipleship as an advanced course in Lay Speaking Ministries. These are designated by the GBOD logo "Learning and Leading." The next scheduled GBOD- approved course, Biblical Storytelling I, will be held September 20-October 3, 2010. 
Information on this course is available here: http://beadisciple.com/workshops.html#StorytellingI
The Richard and Julia Wilke Institute for Discipleship is dedicated to providing educational opportunities that nurture and enrich Christian leaders, lay and clergy, for effective living and ministry. Continuing Education Units (CEUs) are available for all IFD workshops. To read more about these and other future workshops, visit www.BeADisciple.com. Register there to receive monthly email updates or to enroll for an online workshop.