My name is Anne Delgado, and my ministry is faith formation. This is important to me because I want to teach my two children, through stories, actions, and practice, why our faith leads to abundant life as disciples of Jesus Christ. As churches began to shut down at the beginning of the pandemic, Steve Welch in the diocesan office reached out to me about leading some sort of online Sunday School across the Diocese. At first I was reluctant—what did I have to offer families across New Jersey? I realized I was joining a long Biblical tradition of asking, “who, me??” With Steve’s encouragement and a lot of technical assistance, we debuted Diocesan Sunday School at the end of March 2020, using the model we had used at our local church, St. Peter’s in Freehold. I asked my younger son Matthew to join me, figuring it would be a lot more interesting than me talking by myself, and we recorded a lesson each week at our dining room table on my phone. We thought it would last a few months, but in July 2021 we finally wrapped up with 68 videos! I am so blessed to have been part of this pandemic ministry, but as a formation leader in the diocese I am pleased that we have created a resource that will last on our website and YouTube for many years.
This ministry, along with the Zoom sessions that went with it, was a rich blessing during a time I was away from my regular teaching ministry at St. Peter’s. We created an online community of children and adults who loved to learn about God each week, and the seeds of faith planted during this time will continue to grow and bear fruit. I hope we were able to model a simple and accessible way of reading a story of God and God’s people, talking about what it tells us, and putting that into action. I am most grateful, however, for the time I spent with my son each week as we learned another Bible story and talked about what it meant to us as disciples of Jesus Christ. Matt didn’t always want to sit down for the recording (and sometimes neither did I, to be honest!), but the Holy Spirit never failed to inspire and encourage us both. Each week, we learned about God, we talked about our calls as disciples, we practiced our faith together, and those 25 minutes impacted the rest of our week. As my son starts his confirmation journey this fall, I give thanks to God that He gave me such a wonderful partner in ministry in Matthew!
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