“As a church community we felt it was very important for us as a loving group of Christians journeying through life together to engage with this material” explained Revd Andy Muckle.
The St Mary’s Parish Church West Moors community initially experienced “some trepidation” about engaging with the material, Andy revealed.
“As leaders, we were initially wary that using Zoom would be inhibiting to those attending but the feedback received was that Zoom actually enabled people to speak openly” he said.
He continued: “People reflected back that whilst the course material was deeply personal and uncomfortable in places, the experience of engaging with the material deepened their understanding of people with different experiences than their own.
“Having the videos to present and run the sessions consistently throughout the course was very helpful.
“There was very positive feedback from participants on the powerfully moving story films.
“They were given an insight into worlds they had not seen.
Reflecting on the experience of taking part in the LLF course as a church community, Andy said: “It would be difficult to say people enjoyed the course,” he laughed, “but they engaged, they were open, and as incumbent, I was extremely proud of the open and honest conversations we took part in.”
“I believe as a church community we have both been tested and strengthened in our faith by the experience of engaging with Living in Love and Faith.”
- Living in Love and Faith is a set of resources exploring questions of human identity, sexuality, relationships, and marriage, launched on 9 November 2020.
- The LLF resources – which include a 5-session video course for small groups – are designed to facilitate open, honest, and gracious learning and discussion among churchgoers across the country.
- All 42 dioceses have appointed ‘LLF Advocates’, who are enabling churches to engage with the LLF resources in ways appropriate to local contexts.
- People who have done the course are invited to feedback and share their views via an online questionnaire as well as in creative ways. This will be open until the end of April 2022.