Sudan Provincial Training Workshop, February 2023

From 20-23 February 2023, the Provincial Peace Building in Khartoum played host to the Episcopal Church of Sudan (ECS) Provincial Training Workshop. The workshop was a resounding success, with engaging discussions, excellent facilitation and a real sense of the Holy Spirit guiding the work of all in the room.

The Provincial Training Workshop brought together a diverse group of attendees from across the Episcopal Church of Sudan. Along with representatives from the Provincial Headquarters and five for each of the dioceses, the workshop also saw the participation of two members from Shokai Theological College, representatives from Project for Theological Education by Extension (PTEE) in Jordan, the head of theological training from the Anglican Communion Office (ACO), the archbishop leading TEE roll out in South Sudan, members of CASSS, and members from the Relay Trust. The participation of such a diverse group of individuals helped in bringing different perspectives to the table and facilitated a fruitful discussion.

In addition to the aims of building an understanding of the situation of the ECS and developing a plan to meet its needs, the workshop also aimed to create an environment of wisdom and understanding, where all attendees could come together and share their thoughts and ideas in a peaceful and collaborative manner. The workshop encouraged open dialogue and discussions that allowed for different perspectives to be heard and for a collective plan from the people of the church to be developed.

The workshop followed a well-designed format, consisting of worshipping the Lord, devotionals, short presentations, workshop discussions in groups, and plenary feedback sessions. The workshop was expertly facilitated by Canon Andy Wheeler and the fantastic administration (and superb catering) by the ECS contributed to the success of the workshop.

The workshop also saw the introduction of the Five Marks of Mission, which provided a framework to consider training development across the ECS. The Five Marks of Mission include: proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, teaching, baptizing and nurturing new believers, responding to human need by loving service, seeking to transform unjust structures of society, and safeguarding the integrity of creation. The adoption of these marks as a method of categorizing training development is a significant step in the right direction for the ECS and will provide a comprehensive approach to training development.

The final day of the workshop resulted in an outline action plan, which included a long-term development plan for training within the ECS, the identification and request of funding, the establishment of an ECS Training Commission, the restructuring of STC, the re-tuning of the TEE program, and the establishment of diocesan centres. The workshop provided the outline an input for the development of a ten-year training and development strategy for the future of training within the ECS and set the foundation for training across the church for many years to come.