It's here! Walking the Way launches

Francis and RichardNews of Walking the Way has been rumbling through the denomination for the past few months – with the introductory leaflet and the initial resources already available online.

Yet Advent marks the official launch of the URC’s new focus on lifelong Christian discipleship, and Francis Brienen, Deputy General Secretary (Mission), and Richard Church, Deputy General Secretary (Discipleship), explain what Walking the Way is, and what resources are planned for the coming months.  

They say: ‘Walking the Way explores what it means to actively follow and learn from – and to be eventually transformed by – Christ.  It’s for everyone at any stage of the Christian journey – whoever you are, whatever your existing relationship with Jesus Christ and the Church is, whatever your personal circumstances. While there’s nothing new about being a disciple of Christ, we’re confident that there is something new about Walking the Way – in its accessible approach and in the wide range of supporting resources produced and planned.

‘We’ve worked hard to plan a variety of resources to help people and churches engage fully with Walking the Way throughout the year.’

Short liturgies from Advent to Epiphany are now available, emphasising different ways to respond to Advent themes.  Richard Church said: ‘We hope that many will find them helpful – they are a simple way of focusing on discipleship and mission.’

Looking ahead to 2018, on 19 January, the much-anticipated Holy Habits resource books will be launched, and we’re delighted to say that they are now available to pre-order from the URC’s online store.  

The Holy Habits resources, a joint venture with the Methodist Church, are a key resource of Walking the Way. Each of the ten books in the series focuses on one ‘holy habit’, the ten are: biblical teaching, fellowship, breaking of bread, sharing of resources, service, eating together, gladness and generosity, worship, prayer and making more disciples. 

‘The books can be read in any order, over any length of time and are suitable for people of all ages’ explains Francis Brienen. ‘From Pentecost, onwards we hope to supplement the materials with a series of short films, illustrating how churches are exploring each habit, and the difference it is making in their Christian lives.’

Lent resources have also been prepared and the Walking the Way in Lent materials, which will be available online in early January, suggest a menu of possibilities to move beyond the familiar ways of marking Lent into something which encourages the exploration of less familiar territory.

Later in the year, the new material associated with Stepwise – the successor course to Training for Learning and Service – will become available.

Richard Church and Francis Brienen added: ‘We have both been challenged by part of a prayer attributed to Sir Francis Drake: 

“Disturb us, Lord, to dare more boldly, 

To venture on wider seas where storms will show your mastery; 

Where losing sight of land, we shall find the stars. 

We ask You to push back the horizons of our hopes; 

And to push into the future in strength, courage, hope, and love.” 

‘However, you choose to engage with Walking the Way, we hope you find material to support you – and we wish you God’s blessing on your journey.’