Adult Formation

What do we mean by adult formation?

People are approached in liberty by God who calls everyone to grow, develop and bear fruit.  A person cannot put off a response nor cast off personal responsibility in the matter... In this dialogue between God who offers his gifts, and the person who is called to exercise responsibility, there comes the possibility, indeed the necessity, of a total and ongoing formation of the lay faithful.

Christian formation is "a continual process in the individual of maturation in faith and a likening to Christ, according to the will of the Father, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit." [Christifideles Laici (On the Vocation and Mission of the Lay Faithful) by Pope John Paul II]

Is it possible to practise my faith at the weekend and live 'normally' though the week?

"There cannot be two parallel lives in their existence: on the one hand, the so-called 'spiritual' life, with its values and demands; and on the other, the so-called 'secular' life, in a family, at work, in social relationships, in the responsibilities of public life and in culture.  The branch, engrafted to the vine which is Christ, bears its fruit in every sphere of existence and activity... Every activity, every situation, every precise responsibility - as, for example, skill and solidarity in work, love and dedication in the family and the education of children, service to society and public life and the promotion of truth in the area of culture - are the occasions for a 'continuous exercise of faith, hope and charity'."     [Christifideles Laici (On the Vocation and Mission of the Lay Faithful) by Pope John Paul II]

How does the Centre for Catholic Formation serve Adult Formation?

The CCF, for over forty years, has held talks, courses and events to serve the ongoing formation of the lay people in the Archdiocese of Southwark.  The Office for the Ongoing Formation of Priests works closely with the CCF to both nourish the faith life of our priest and help them in their task to guide the people in their pastoral care.

A vitally important part of this work is raising awareness of disability.  God does not discriminate, indeed all are of equal value in the eyes of God and all deserve the very best that we can offer.

The Centre also offers the Catholic Certificate for Religious Studies (CCRS), an introduction to the central teaching and beliefs of the Catholic tradition.  If you would like to find out more or register please visit CCRS

For more information on adult formation generally or advice on disability specifically please contact-us.

The CCF is able to provide a wide range of courses to parishes and deaneries, on request. These include:

  • Deanery Catechists Course
  • Exploring Discipleship and Mission
  • Time for Reflection and Prayer
  • Ongoing Formation with Parish Readers
  • Ongoing Formation with Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion
  • Partnership in Ministry (e.g. Parish Councils, Parish Teams)
  • Developing and Supporting RCIA Teams
  • Support for Liturgy of the Word with Children
  • Inclusion of People with Disabilities in the Life and Mission of the Church
  • Support with Parish Disability Access Audits
  • Ways to dialogue with people of Other Faiths
  • Disability Awareness in Schools and Parishes
  • Preparing the Parish for the New Translation of the Missal


Spirituality (the things of the spirit) is a wide ranging word used to describe the many elements of our faith life.  Catholic Spirituality includes prayer and traditional devotions as well as our life as a community, celebration of the Mass and worship.

Spiritual Direction

Spiritual direction is a way of meeting with someone - a spiritual director or guide, to share thoughts and reflections about your faith.  You may experience spiritual direction while on retreat or meet regularly to reflect on you faith and prayer life.  More information on Spiritual Direction or to find a Spiritual Director please contact Marie Mann at   A training Programme for Spiritual Directors, Canterbury is run at the Franciscan International Study Centre, for more information please visit their website at


Prayer, our conversation with God, is at the heart of our spiritual life.  The Church has a rich heritage of prayer and worship, the Mass being the centre and heart of our communal worship.  For those who wish to develop their prayer life, resources such as the publication Do you Love Me? a practical guide for personal or shared prayer has been produced by the Bishops of England and Wales, may be helpful.  Please contact us if you would like to discuss other parish initiatives, such as Weeks of Guided Prayer.

Spiritual Traditions

The Catholic Church has a rich diversity of religious traditions many of which have communities in Southwark including the Carmelites in Aylesford and the Benedictines in Minister, Thanet both of whom offer retreats and courses.

Southwark Spirituality Commission

The Spirituality Commission was formed in 2014 to assist the parishes and people of the Archdiocese of Southwark to engage in prayer and spirituality.  Their website is and is under development.