Groups are beginning to take shape for the third year of Disciple Online, the online form of Disciple Bible Study. Enrollment is open now at www.BeADisciple.com/discipleonlinecourses for individuals who wish to participate in Disciple I, Disciple II, and Disciple III in an online format.
Participants will follow the traditional Disciple format. They will study the Bible on their own during the week, then meet with their group members through the Internet with special software, at a set day and time, to review the week's study.
Churches may wish to host a Disciple Online course intended just for church members. Any trained or experienced Disciple Bible Study facilitator may be qualified as a Disciple Online facilitator in How to Become a Disciple Online Facilitator.
Rev. Mark McDonald, pastor of First United Methodist Church of Jacksonville, Arkansas, led one of the first five Disciple Online groups. "Experiencing relationships without seeing one another…has removed many of the pretenses and assumptions that we make," he says. "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 third year for Disciple Online, it is the first year for Disciple Online III. In addition to this, the Richard and Julia Wilke Institute for Discipleship (IFD) is working closely with the Center for Youth Ministry Excellence (CYMX) to create Youth Disciple Online – due out fall 2012. For more information, visit www.BeADisciple.com or email BeADisciple@sckans.edu.
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 upcoming workshops, visit www.BeADisciple.com. Register at the site to receive monthly email updates or to enroll for an online course.