Our conference has led the way in leadership development for faith formation through the Parish Christian Educators Certification and Ministry. This three year, bi-annual, retreat-based certification process provided training, connection, and support for leaders in Christian Education including children’s ministry, youth ministry, adult ministry, family ministry, and intergenerational ministry. 

Now, more than ever, we realize a hybrid (digital and gathered) ministry is essential both for Faith Formation and for the development of Faith Formation ministry leaders. Guided by the vision, witness, and ministry of Parish Christian Educators, a new connectional learning space - the Faith Formation Leadership Academy - developed. We are excited to launch this digital learning space that will intentionally connect, train, and support faith formation leaders in the Rio Texas Conference and greater United Methodist connection. 

Join us by registering to take an online class, or sign up to participate in the three year certification process. Those registering for certification will receive 2 CEU's for their completion of each course, including a final assessment project. 


  • Affirm Faith Formation as a faithful vocation
  • Strengthen lifelong faith formation in churches with paraprofessional staff or volunteer led ministry
  • Develop leaders who are: confident, competent, collaborative, energized, effective
  • Offer support and accountability that increases longevity and decreases burnout
  • Nurture fruitful ministry and spiritual formation

Faith Formation for Leaders

A valuable portion of the three year certification process is spiritual formation and renewal.

Participants working towards certification will join with others in a monthly cohort, led by an experienced facilitator. Individuals are also asked to complete an annual spiritual renewal retreat for each year of certification.

Registration and Scholarships

Single course: $125

1 Year of Certification: $700/year

Includes 4 courses + monthly cohort + retreat

3 Year certification: $1,800 (if paid up front)

Includes 4 courses/year + monthly cohort + annual retreat

Scholarships are available.

Questions about certification? Learn more here.

Contact us with questions.

Watch this video to learn more about the FFLA!

“Education in faith is rooted in knowing a tradition, interacting with a community of meaning and memory, responding out of an individual personality, and moving into the world…Christian education is a conversation for living, a seeking to use the resources of the faith and cultural traditions to move into an open future of justice and hope”

-- Jack L. Seymour, Mapping Christian Education: Approaches to Congregational Learning

Rio Texas Conference

The Faith Formation Leadership Academy is a ministry of the Rio Texas Conference. This ministry reflects the conference’s commitment to Christian Education Leadership Development as a pathway towards making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

We celebrate over 25 years of this important work and look forward with excitement as the academy moves this work into a digital world while recognizing the continued need for in-person opportunities for connection, networking, sabbath, and spiritual renewal.