Diocese of Oakland Adult Faith Formation

St. Francis de Sales School for Pastoral Ministry is renovating its program in light of the vision of Pope Francis for the New Evangelization.  The courses are newly designed to equip parish ministry leaders, catechists, parents and all adults to be more effective in communicating the relevance of the Catholic faith for their lives.   A new stable of instructors models a style of teaching that fosters transformation in Christ and a missionary outlook focused on witnessing to God’s mercy within our families, parishes, and the wider world.

Classes meet one Saturday a month.  If you’re hesitating, “come and see” by auditing a course.  And if you are a graduate of the program, come back and take a new course or retake one with a new instructor at half price.  Spring 2016 courses are: Old Testament, Christian Prayer and Spirituality, the Sacraments, and the Creed: Part I (Trinity, Jesus Christ, and the Cross Event).  Each course provides 12.5 hours of ongoing adult education. The fee per course is $120. Click here for more information http://www.oakdiocese.org/ministries-formation/adult-faith-formation/spm  or contact Sandra Martinez at 510-267-8371.  Deadline to register is December 18th.


Check out our SPM Facebook page and view our video with Bishop Barber’s endorsement and student testimonials!  

Our vision for this ministry at St John Vianney is inspired by our US Bishops who give us three major goals that guide and direct efforts in adult faith formation:

1. Invite and Enable Ongoing Conversion to Jesus in Holiness of Life.
In response to God's call to holiness, our faith and life as adult disciples are grounded in developing a personal relationship with Jesus, "the Holy One of God" (Jn 6:69, Mk 1:24). Accordingly, "'at the heart of catechesis we find, in essence, a Person, the Person of Jesus of Nazareth. . . .' Catechesis aims at putting 'people . . . in communion . . . with Jesus Christ.'"

As its first goal, faith formation helps adults "to acquire an attitude of conversion to the Lord." This attitude fosters a baptismal spirituality for adults. It leads them to recognize and repent of sin in their hearts and lives, to seek reconciliation through the sacraments, and to embrace the invitation and challenge of an ever deepening faith in Jesus. It means putting on the mind of Christ, trusting in the Father's love, obeying God's will, seeking holiness of life, and growing in love for others. Deepening personal prayer is a significant means toward growth in holiness in daily life.

2. Promote and Support Active Membership in the Christian Community.
As adult believers, we learn and live our faith as active members of the Church. Our response to God's call to community "cannot remain abstract and unincarnated," but rather, "reveals itself concretely by a visible entry into a community of believers . . . a community which itself is a sign of transformation, a sign of newness of life: it is the Church, the visible sacrament of salvation." People find this community of faith in the parish and diocese, as well as in their families, small church communities, personal relationships, faith-based associations, and in the communion of saints of all times and places.

Accordingly, faith formation helps adults make "a conscious and firm decision to live the gift and choice of faith through membership in the Christian community," accepting "co-responsibility for the community's mission and internal life." Adults not only receive the ministries of the Christian community, they also contribute to its life and mission through the generous stewardship of their gifts.

3. Call and Prepare Adults to Act as Disciples in Mission to the World.
The Church and its adult faithful have a mission in and to the world: to share the message of Christ to renew and to transform the social and temporal order. This dual calling to evangelization and justice is integral to the identity of the lay faithful; all are called to it in baptism. Accordingly, faith formation seeks to help each adult believer become "more willing and able to be a Christian disciple in the world." As salt of the earth and light for the world (cf. Mt 5:13-16), adult disciples give witness to God's love and caring will so that, in the power of the Spirit, they renew the face of the earth.

 —excerpted from Our Hearts Were Burning Within Us: A Pastoral Plan for Adult Faith Formation in the United States

Are you searching for something or someone? 

Sometimes in our life journey we know something or someone is missing yet we cannot put our finger on what is missing.  So we fill our life up with stuff.  We clutter our life with things of little or no value.  Yet we still feel like we are missing something or someone.  If you feel this way or maybe know someone who feels a longing or yearning for more, please come join us.  Whether you are a non-Catholic or know someone who is …whether you are a lapsed Catholic or know someone who has left the Church for whatever reason… Come join us.  Or maybe you missed the Sacrament of Confirmation or know someone who is not confirmed.  Come join us.   Our Inquiry Sessions are opened to all who seek to have a deeper relationship with God.  We journey together as we unpack our deepest yearnings for God.  God is always there waiting for our returning.  Are you ready to find God in your life?

For further information please email Liz Rogers at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 925-939-7911.