Virtual Learning Community for Faith formation

Want to learn more about the Catholic faith?

In a world where many seek to learn at the own pace in their own place, participation in the Virtual Learning Community for Faith Formation (VLCFF) provides an opportunity for people within the Lismore Diocese, including those of St Agnes’ Catholic Parish, to access courses and seminars on a wide range of topics to build their knowledge and understanding of the Catholic faith.

Access to the VLCFF has been made possible by a partnership between the Lismore Diocese and the University of Dayton in Ohio, USA which has run it successfully for over 20 years.

The University of Dayton in Ohio, USA launched its Virtual Learning Community for Faith Formation (VLCFF) in the year 2000 to provide religious education and faith formation for adults online anytime, anywhere. Since then the initiative has been a great success.

There are close on 100 Dioceses around the world who partner with the VLCFF, including the Archdioceses of Adelaide and Melbourne, and the Dioceses of Ballarat and Rockhampton in Australia.

The partnership with the University of Dayton offers the Parishes of the Lismore Diocese an opportunity to join with others to do what we cannot necessarily do alone, that is, offer quality catechist and faith formation courses online via a well-established, appropriately accredited organisation.

There are over 100 short courses on offer ranging in duration from 3 weeks (Seminar) to 5 weeks.

Each course is tightly structured around these weeks with participants expected to complete 5-7 hours per week (25-35 hours per five-week course) in reading, posting own thoughts and reflecting on others.

Courses also range from ‘Basic’ through ‘Intermediate’ to ‘Advanced’. Usually a participant would complete courses at the first two levels before attempting the third.

Most readings are online. However, sometimes a book will need to be borrowed, purchased or downloaded as the ‘mandatory’ text.

Areas of study include: Liturgy, Sacraments and RCIA, Prayer, Scripture, Leadership, Church History, Social Justice, Pastoral Care, and Youth Ministry

You can find details of the courses and subjects offered here

Please contact Tony Worner (VLCFF Coordinator for the Lismore Diocese) to talk about your current ministry situation or what you hope to study to enable us to assist you with working out (discerning) your formation learning pathway in the VLCFF.

There are six to eight cycles of subjects across the year. Some subjects are available multiple times across the year.

Study Cycles for 2022

See 2022 Course Overview here

Cycle 1: 17 January – 20 February 2022

Registration: Closed

Cycle 2: 7 March – 10 April 2022

Registration: Closed

Cycle 3: 25 April – 15 May, 2022 (3 and 5 week courses)

Registration: Closed

Cycle 4: 30 May – 3 July, 2022

Registration: Closed

Cycle 5: 18 July – 21 August, 2022

Registration: Closed

Cycle 6: 5 September – 9 October, 2022

Registration: Closed

Cycle 7: 24 October – 27 November, 2022

Registration: Closed

There are two parts to the registration process – Diocesan notification (Step 1 below) and VLCFF registration (Steps 2 & 3 below).

  1. Complete a Diocesan notification form (here)

By completing this short online form, you help the Lismore Diocese keep accurate records of the number people participating and the types of courses they are doing to enable the Diocese to evaluate its continued participation in the VLCFF next year.

  1. Create a personal login on the VLCFF site by:
        1. Agreeing to the VLCFF Member Agreement (here)
        2. Creating ‘My Profile’
        3. Under “Diocese/Partner” select “Diocese of Lismore (Australia)”
        4. Submit profile.
        5. Once you have created and submitted your profile, you will be allowed to ‘Log In’ (using the Username and Password you created).
        6. You can then ‘edit’ your profile and ‘register for a course’.
  1. By clicking on “Register for a Course” a list of courses for the current cycle will be seen. Simply click on the ‘box’ to register for your chosen course.

Please note, you will not need to create a profile for subsequent course registrations – you will just ‘Log in’ and register.

To see a sample course with a provisional log-in, click here.

Individuals from the Lismore Diocese who take a VLCFF course pay $US50 per course/$US40 per seminar, depending on the currency exchange rate this is approximately $AUD65 and $AUD52 respectively.

An individual from a non-VLCFF diocesan partner pays $US105 (approx. $AUD136) per course/$US80 (approx. $AUD104) per seminar.

Tony Worner
Leader of Lay Formation / Diocesan Coordinator VLCFF
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 02 6588 7444