Odyssey is the name for our very cool communicantsí
class running at WSP this winter.
The class meets over 4 months (7 bi-weekly meetings)
with a view to teaching the participants the skills and
habits they need to take their place in the adult
Christian community. During the course of the Odyssey
there are a number of challenges. There is also
support, aimed at fully integrating the youth into the
church community in a relational way.
Meetings are at the ministerís home from 6-9pm every
second Saturday. They include a shared meal, a time of
praise and worship, and a time of discussion based on a
video, the readings or preparation for a challenge. The
themes for the 7 weeks are these: Worshipping God,
Knowing Jesus, Knowing Ourselves, Choosing Jesus,
Serving Jesus, Serving Others in Jesusí Name, and
Joining the Church. The final meeting is a double
session on the eve of confirmation. It will include a
viewing of the Gospel of John movie, and parents and
sponsors are invited to join us for the meal and the
time of prayer and dedication to follow.
Seven challenges are set for the youth during the
course of the Odyssey. They are to:
- Attend church weekly and engage with the sermon
using a worksheet prepared by the minister. The
sermons during this period are on 1 Corinthians.
- Read the Gospel of Mark (from the Message)
according to a daily reading schedule. Participants
have been given a notebook in addition to their
Bible and catechism to record thoughts as they occur
about the readings.
- Read A Catechism for Today (the 2006 study
catechism of the Presbyterian Church in Canada Ė
this document explicates the Apostlesí Creed, Lordís
Prayer and 10 commandments) according to a daily
- Prepare prayers, scripture readings and worship
songs to lead in the worship on Jan. 31.
- Conduct an interview with their sponsors as
examples of those who have chosen Jesus.
- Take part in serving others in Jesusí name at a
local soup kitchen (March 15).
- Create a banner to hang in the church as a
permanent artifact of the confirmation class of í10.
Sponsorship and Encouragement:
Each Odyssey participant is matched with a sponsoring
couple from the congregation. The idea is for them to
build a relationship with that couple and receive prayer
support and ongoing encouragement in the Christian life
from those sponsors. Opportunities to get to know their
sponsors will arise during the Odyssey at the interview,
during the outing to the soup kitchen (to which sponsors
are also invited) and at the final dedication evening.
At the eventual service of baptism/confirmation, the
sponsors will stand with the candidates. Additional
cards and letters of encouragement will be sent through
the mail to each Odyssey participant from church
Christian Odyssey has its own Google Groups website.
There are discussion topics posted there on issues of
Christian interest that arise in the news during the
course of the Odyssey. Other postings include
reflections on the daily bible and catechism readings
and links to the weekly sermons, together with the
worksheets based on them. Odyssey participants are
invited to contribute to the reflections and comment on
the sermons. To access the website you need to have a
Google Account. Once you have signed in, anyone should
be able to view the siteís content at
however, you need to be a Christian Odyssey participant
in order to participate in discussions.
Christian Odyssey 2010 includes 4 participants aged
13-16. They will be offered the opportunity to be taken
into the membership of the church at Easter.