Learning Opportunities

Learn and Lead

The Diocese sponsors an annual conference that addresses a range of topics and includes several workshop

EFM (Education for Ministry)

EFM is a program of theological education at a distance, offered by Sewanee School of Theology. The Diocese of RI is a sponsoring Diocese, and Students of EFM sign up one year at a time for this four year program that covers the basics of a theological education. Students meet regularly, usually once a week, in seminars under the guidance of trained mentors. The program grants a certificate of completion of the four years and 18 Continuing Education Units for each year’s work.

Find an EFM class near you


The ADULT section of LeaderResources has a wide range of adult formation resources including Journey in Faith and LifeCycles which are multi-year programs comparable to EFM. You will also find shorter programs designed for Sunday mornings, longer programs forevenings, programs for newcomers and confirmands, and resources focused on the seasons,current events, spirituality and the Scriptures. Programs are downloadable and are designed to be led by average members of a congregation. Those published by LeaderResources are free to Episcopal churches in RI — call 800-941-2218 for more information.

Seminary Education for Laity

Seminaries offer education opportunities for laity as well as clergy. For example, the Yale Divinity School Summer Study Program (New Haven, CT) offers two sessions of week-long classes in theology, liturgics, church history, and a whole variety of other topics useful to both lay and ordained ministers. Berkeley at Yale (the Episcopal seminary at Yale Divinity School) offers a variety of degrees and formation opportunities for laity.

The Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, MA offers courses, degree programs and weekend workshop. Their Lifelong Learning Program allows you to design your own course of study while their Distributive Learning Program allows you to study for a degree with mostly online courses you log into from home. You will also find many more seminaries in the Boston area that offer courses, lectures and workshops as well as degree programs.