Course Syllabus for God-Centered Living Across the Life Span

First Semester Syllabus
September 10, 2017 – January 28, 2018

This syllabus may change during the course of the term. Notification of changes will be posted on St. Mark’s web page ( and included in “This Week at St. Mark’s,” a weekly newsletter distributed electronically on Wednesday mornings.

Course title:   God-Centered Living Across the Life Span: A Learning Laboratory
Instructors:     ALL the people – lay and ordained - of St. Mark’s
Office Hours
Pastor Debra: 3:30-4:30 p.m., Wednesdays at Cupitol, 812 Grove Street, Evanston
                        2:00 – 5:00 p.m., Thursdays at St. Mark’s
                        or by appointment (call) 847-732-9564 or (email)

Scott Zaucha:  9:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon, Wednesdays at St. Mark’s or by appointment
                        (call) 847-864-4806 or (email)

Katie Snitker:  10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., Mondays at St. Mark’s or by appointment
(call) 847-864-4806 or (email)

David Plank:   by appointment, (call) 402-650-9266 or (email)

Course Description
Lifelong Christian faith formation is important for lifelong growth in the knowledge, service and love of God as followers of Christ.  Regardless of where you are on your spiritual journey, no matter what season of life you are in, you are invited to enter into a prayerful life of continuous learning by full participation in this course.  Prerequisites: none.

Course Objectives and Goals
Students successfully completing this course will develop skill in
  • Realizing and accepting that this course never ends;
  • Contributing to a learning community characterized by dialogue, mutual respect, appreciation of diverse views, and walking alongside others in their journey of faith
Students will have the opportunity to develop the following competencies
  • Insightful awareness of self as a representative of Christ and Christ’s Church; bearing witness to Christ wherever they may be; and, according to the gifts given them, carrying on Christ’s work of reconciliation in the world.

  • Identification of the presence of grace inherent in self and others through full participation in all aspects of the course – particularly in coming together week by week for corporate worship; and working, praying, and giving for the spread of the kingdom of God.
 Course Requirements
All students are required to bring their whole selves to each aspect of the course.

Criteria for Passing Grade
There are no grades for this course. However, each student is encouraged to hold themselves responsible for the fulfillment of course assignments and is encouraged to be accountable to at least one other member of the learning community through regular check-ins.

Required Reading
Weekly Scripture assignments can be found here and will also be included in “This Week at St. Mark’s” which is delivered electronically on Wednesday morning of each week.  Please read the assigned passages at least once prior to Sunday worship.

An order for Daily Prayer can be found in The Book of Common Prayer, 1979 which can be borrowed from St. Mark’s or which can be found online at See especially pages 137-140.

Course Schedule
In order to accommodate busy schedules, this course will meet at a variety of times and places.  The following is a starting point; however, additional information will be available at The Ministry Fair and on the St. Mark’s website: and in “This Week at St. Mark’s.”

Small Groups:             By arrangement with small group members. Additional information is
available at the Ministry Fair or on our website, Small groups are available for children, teens, and adults. There are also multi-generational small groups available.

Lab Work:                    Daily – in your home, your workplace, your school, your neighborhood.
                                    For ideas, please refer to pages 292-294 of The Book of Common Prayer,

Group Lab:                  A group lab - “Becoming the Story We Tell” - meets weekly at
St. Mark’s (Tuesday evenings from 7 – 8:30 p.m. through the end of
September; Thursday evenings from 7 – 8:30 p.m. from October through

Practicum:                   This is the corporate worship aspect of the course and meets every
Sunday morning at the following times:

Special Practicum:      Worship that takes place at other times

Course Assignments                                                 
While there are no grades for the course, past participants have indicated that their learning is greatly enhanced by the following:
  • Regular attendance at practicums
  • Participation in at least one small group focused within the church (e.g., acolyte, altar guild, choir, flower guild, etc.)
  • Participation in at least one small group focused outside the church (e.g., sandwich making, serving Wednesday lunch, Producemobile volunteering, etc.)
  • Participation in the group lab
  • Sharing your group work and lab experiments with one another: a bulletin board has been prepared for you to post descriptions, photos and/or data from your most recent experiments. Please feel free to share both your successes and your failures for we learn from them both.
Copying an other's work - particularly if it is that of Jesus Christ - is highly recommended; however, always remember to credit the source.