March 19, 2018

This year, from October 9-12 Iowa will serve as host to the National Christians Engaged in Faith Formation Conference called ‘’ ( The Conference will offer a diverse lineup of educational opportunities with workshops, keynotes and worship all highlighted. The conference will also feature authors and speakers Brian McLaren, John Roberto and Mary Scifres as well as United Methodist Bishops Laurie Haller from Iowa, Cynthia Fierro Harvey from Louisiana and Tracy Smith Malone from East Ohio. A closing concert featuring Carrie Newcomer will also take place.

Members of the Iowa CEF organization are particularly thrilled that this conference is coming to our home state. Ashley Risting from Grinnell UMC says “I have found that attending conferences with others who are doing similar things in ministry has become life-giving and life-sustaining!  It is important for me to find a place and a people to call home, to worship and connect in a space separate from my work, and to glean and share ideas with friends and people who ‘get it’ more profoundly than anyone. I hope that Christian Educators in the Iowa Annual Conference take the opportunity to attend.”

This event will cater to a wide variety of people including:

  • Leaders engaged in local church faith formation ministries

  • Annual conference staff persons

  • Clergy with a passion for the teaching ministries of the church and the development of faithful Christian disciples

  • College, university, graduate school and seminary professors and students

  • Directors of Discipleship, Christian educators, youth ministers, children and family ministry leaders, etc.

  • Retirees who have spent their career life in local congregations as Christian educators and now want to encourage those working today in this field

For more information on Iowa CEF, including how to become a member, visit

If you’d like to attend, but will need financial support please visit for a scholarship application form. Scholarships are generously provided through the Iowa United Methodist Board of Discipleship and the Iowa CEF chapter.