Tag Archives: forward day by day

Forward Today: Discipleship made accessible

Dear friends in Christ,

Over the last few years, Forward Movement has been working with hundreds of congregations and tens of thousands of Episcopalians to understand spiritual growth. What works? What nurtures growth?

What we have learned is clear and unsurprising. If you want to grow spiritually and stay renewed as a follower of Jesus, there are three key practices:

  • Go to church every week and hear the Word proclaimed and receive Jesus Christ in the sacrament if possible.
  • Pray every day. Talk to God, and listen for God.
  • Read the Bible regularly. This reminds us of the great, cosmic story of God’s love for us and helps us find our place in it.

It’s not always easy, but it’s not complicated. For almost 90 years, Forward Movement has offered an accessible, inviting, affordable way to sustain daily discipleship. Forward Day by Day isn’t just a book of meditations. Rather, it’s an encouraging way to be nurtured in daily prayer and supported in reading scripture.

If you are a regular reader of Forward Day by Day, I hope you’ll urge someone else to give it a try. It’s available in print, as a podcast, as an app, and on our website. You can read in English or Adelante dìa a dìa in Spanish. And plenty more ways!

If you’ve never given it a try, please do. It might just be the thing that helps you in a habit of daily prayer and regular scripture.

Blessings on the way.

Yours faithfully,

Scott Gunn's signature

Scott Gunn
Executive Director

More from our ministry:

Now shipping: Devotions for People who Don’t Do Devotions

Dive deeper into research on spiritual growth: Signs of Life

From Grow Christians:

Take common prayer with you with our lightweight BCP Gift Edition

Forward Day by Day app and website receive major update

Complete overhaul improves user experience and functionality

Forward Movement announces a major update to its popular Forward Day by Day smartphone app, as well as a relaunch of its Daily Prayer website, prayer.forwardmovement.org. The complete overhaul includes a new clean design with simplified navigation, as well as podcast integration and expanded customization settings for users.

Visitors to the Daily Prayer website (prayer.forwardmovement.org) will see the new design immediately, while users of the Forward Day by Day app should automatically receive the update within a few days, depending on their device and settings. The app is available on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the app has been free to download since early 2021.

The long-awaited upgrade was completed in partnership with the Rev. Greg Johnston of Cambridge, MA, the creator of the popular Venite app, which Forward Movement began sponsoring in 2020.

“We are committed to our mission to inspire disciples and empower evangelists, wherever they are,” said the Rev. Canon Scott Gunn, Forward Movement executive director. “This upgrade to our app and website will provide users with an improved user experience, including customizable features and settings, to strengthen a habit of daily prayer and scripture engagement, both known catalysts to a deepening life of faith.”

To assist visitors with bookmarked pages, the existing version of prayer.forwardmovement.org will remain intact for several weeks as users become accustomed to the new website. By late August, pages will redirect to the upgraded site.

The Forward Day by Day app and Daily Prayer website were initially launched in 2012.

Report bugs or problems to tech@forwardmovement.org. We appreciate your help refining this offering!

About Forward Movement

Inspiring disciples and empowering evangelists around the globe every day, Forward Movement has been producing innovative resources to encourage spiritual growth in individuals and congregations since 1935. Best known for the daily devotional Forward Day by Day, Forward Movement also produces books, smart phone apps, pamphlets, conferences, online courses, church leadership resources, and more, in English and Spanish. Visit www.forwardmovement.org or www.venadelante.org to learn more.

New daily email featuring the Spanish edition of Forward Day by Day

Se podrá recibir Adelante día a día en español por email
Será gratuito y empezará en julio

El ministerio Forward Movement se complace en presentar Adelante día a día en español por email. La versión en inglés se viene ofreciendo gratuitamente por email desde 2020.

Los emails gratuitos corresponden a la versión impresa de Adelante día a día, con meditaciones inspirativas basadas en pasajes de la Biblia. Los pasajes corresponden a las lecturas del leccionario tal como aparecen en Leccionario Común Revisado y en el Oficio Diario del Libro de Oración Común de la Iglesia Episcopal.

Hugo Olaiz, editor asociado de recursos latinos/hispanos, declaró: “Estos emails diarios nos darán una gran oportunidad a de incorporar la oración y las escrituras en nuestra vida diaria. Los hábitos espirituales diarios son la clave para profundizar nuestra relación con Jesús, con el prójimo y con nosotros mismos. Estos emails diarios serán una fuerte de inspiración para discípulas y discípulos de todo el mundo”.

Haz clic aquí para suscribirte.

Los envíos diarios comienzan el 1° de julio.

New free daily email will be launched on July 1st

Forward Movement is happy to introduce a free daily email version of Adelante día a día, the Spanish language edition of Forward Day by Day. This new offering joins the English email edition, which was released as a free subscription in 2020.

The email content will reflect the print edition of Adelante día a día, offering inspirational meditations reflecting on a specific Bible passage, chosen from the daily lectionary readings as listed in the Revised Common Lectionary or the Daily Office from the Episcopal Church’s Book of Common Prayer.

“This new daily email offers a great opportunity for Spanish speaking disciples looking for accessible ways to incorporate prayer and scripture into their daily lives,” said Hugo Olaiz, Associate Editor for Latino/Hispanic Ministries. “We know that daily spiritual habits are crucial in deepening our relationships with Jesus, with our neighbors, and with ourselves. We hope this new daily email becomes a source of inspiration for disciples around the world.”

Click here to subscribe to the new daily email.

Email distribution begins on July 1, 2021.

Forward Today: Staying connected

Dear friends in Christ,

It’s not easy to stay connected in the midst of a pandemic. The need for physical distance means that we can’t spend time with groups, and we can’t do many of the things that we might usually do to stay in touch with friends.

I spend lots of time talking with church leaders about how they are fostering community during this time. Online worship is common, and lots of churches are running classes by video. I myself find it enlivening to teach a weekly Bible study online.

But not everyone has internet access. How are churches staying connected with people who aren’t online? It’s not just an access issue, either. Parents of young children might be so frazzled with keeping their kids’ schoolwork going via zoom, not to mention their own work meetings, that a church meeting online feels like a major burden.

I was impressed when I heard Jason Leo talk about how the church he serves used Forward Day by Day to keep people connected to their faith and to God. You can watch him speak in a brief video. It’s so simple and yet effective.

With Lent coming up, some churches are sending out Lent bags or “Lent in a box” to each home in their church. Leading Ideas offered some excellent ideas for what churches can mail out to keep members connected during Lent, though I don’t love all of their suggestions. Plenty of good advice here though.

We have lots of good Lenten items at Forward Movement. Whether it’s a poster, a devotional book, a children’s book, or a copy of Forward Day by Day, there are lots of tangible ways you can keep your online and offline members connected to God and to their community.

What are you doing to stay connected?

Yours faithfully,

Scott Gunn
Executive Director



Subscribe to receive Forward Today in your inbox.

Tune in!

Listen to today’s Forward Day by Day reflection on the Forward Day by Day podcast. Find morning prayer on the Morning at the Office podcast and end your day with the Evening at Prayer podcast. Available anywhere you listen!


In case you missed it…

New release: With Gladness | Forward movement

With Gladness: 5 Weeks of Holy Practices for Disciples | ChurchNext

Learn more about Revive for Lent and sign up for a facilitator training session with Dawn Davis

View our interactive Lent catalog | Forward Movement

Submit a prayer | Christian Prayers from around the World

Our Ministry in a Global Pandemic

We get a lot of questions about how we’re doing at Forward Movement these days. The short answer is that we’re well. So far, none of us has been ill due to the coronavirus.

Starting in early March, we scattered from our office, and our staff has been working in their homes since then. Working remotely brings challenges because we can’t pop up over a cubicle wall or walk down the hall for a quick answer to a question. Just moving checks and other pieces of paper around can be complicated. And we miss seeing one another in person.

However, this time also brings blessings. We are learning to work in new ways. Some churches have called us to increase their Forward Day by Day orders, telling us that delivering daily devotions to people’s homes is one of the critical ways they are keeping their church together in a time that looks dispersed. Your donations are exceptionally generous, and for that, we are profoundly grateful. We are surrounded by the prayers and love of people worldwide, and we pray for you.

Because most churches are not meeting in person, we’ve seen our revenue decline sharply. Some churches have canceled Forward Day by Day, and without classes and book groups, our book sales are down. To stay financially sound, we were forced to reduce our staff by about 20%. It was tough to say farewell to beloved colleagues.

Despite these challenges, we have worked hard to meet the immediate needs of the pandemic. We launched This is NOT Sunday School to support Christian learning at home. We reduced our ebook prices to make digital resources more accessible and affordable. We’ve created several other free resources to meet the needs of the church. We continue to say yes to free material requests from prisons, hospitals, nursing homes, and military bases.

We are optimistic about our future, long term. We have a stable reserve fund, and our board of directors is working hard to ensure we stay focused on what we need to do for our organizational health and the good of the church. We will be here for you during the pandemic and long after it ends.

If you are inclined to pray for our staff and our work, we’d be grateful. If your income is unaffected by the pandemic and you are able, we very much appreciate your donation in support of our ministry. Your support of our ministry means that we can be ready to support you and the whole church.

Your letters, phone calls, and emails mean the world to us. Do let us know if we can help you, or if you have suggestions for our ministry.

This article in an excerpt from Odyssey. Read the full issue of Odyssey here.

Review of Come & See: Reflections on the Life of Jesus

Come & See: Reflections on the Life of Jesus
Curated by Sanford Smith

John 1:38-39. “The disciples said, ‘Rabbi, where are you staying?’ He said to them, ‘Come and see.’”

As a regular contributor to the online commentaries on Forward Day by Day since 2012, I welcome this opportunity to share my observations of Sanford Smith’s excellent collection Come & See: Reflections on the Life of Jesus.

He has successfully produced an inspiring collection, a life’s journey narrated by passages from scripture and from commentaries by contributors to Forward. Its format is simple and direct: a series of meditations on readings from the Gospels that reflect the life of Jesus in chronological order, presented as a biography in the form of a symposium, and consisting of a variety of individual writing styles by multiple authors.

Sanford Smith’s project has obviously involved a thoughtful sifting-out process of countless scripture readings and commentaries pertaining to Jesus’ life, and as a result has come up with a complete and reverent summation. Congratulations on a splendid contribution to the Forward Movement!

—Dr. David Yeomans

Forward Today: The world changes one life at a time

Dear friends in Christ,

Lately when people ask me how I’m doing, I say something like, “Well, other than a deadly pandemic and a political dumpster fire, I’m fine!” We laugh. It’s funny because it’s true.

I don’t intend that as a knock on any political party. Whether you’re conservative or liberal, and whatever nation you live in, I think we can all agree that we wish our political leadership were…better.

I tend to engage in gallows humor. Laughter helps me get through tough times. Not everything is funny, of course, but little bursts of joy surely help me when life is challenging. But laughter isn’t the only way or the best way to survive when we face challenges.

The longer I’ve served at Forward Movement—in conversation with lay people and clergy from all over the church—I have become more and more convinced that daily prayer and regular scripture reading are the foundations of discipleship. Tending to our relationship with God in prayer keeps us focused on who we serve, and steeping ourselves in scripture reminds us that we are part of God’s great love for us and all creation.

If you’ve been reading Forward Today for a while, you’ve heard this before. And you’ll hear it again. Partly this is because I need the reminder myself. And partly it’s because there is always someone who hasn’t yet begun this ancient and life-giving practice.

So I want to encourage you all to do something that I try to do myself. Pray daily. Maybe you pray the daily office. Maybe you just talk to God. Maybe you have a favorite prayer resource you enjoy. There’s no right or wrong way to pray, but do pray.

And read your Bible. Read your way through a whole book of the Bible. Find a resource that takes you through a theme of the Bible, such as trust or forgiveness or mercy. Use the daily office lectionary to read much of scripture. Or just open up a Bible and start reading.

One of the greatest treasures of Forward Movement is Forward Day by Day. There’s a reason it has been beloved since it started in 1935. Each day, you get a snippet of scripture, a devotional reflection, and an invitation to pray. We do sell print subscriptions, of course. But I’m happy to say that we now offer a daily email with Forward Day by Day for free. If you want a regular invitation to read scripture and pray right in your inbox, you can sign up for free today.

Whether you use something from Forward Movement or just grab a Bible, I hope you’ll commit (or recommit) to reading and praying regularly. And consider inviting a friend to do the same.

Can I fix the pandemic? Can I fix our politics? No, but I can fix my heart. And the world changes one life at a time.

Yours faithfully,

Scott Gunn
Executive Director



Subscribe to receive Forward Today in your inbox.

Photo: Pixabay

Tune in!

Listen to today’s Forward Day by Day reflection on the Forward Day by Day podcast. Find morning prayer on the Morning at the Office podcast and end your day with the Evening at Prayer podcast. Available anywhere you listen!


In case you missed it…

This is NOT Sunday School | ChurchNext & Forma

In the depths of Pentecost days | Grow Christians

Unprecedented Times | ECF Vital Practices

The Way of Love: A Practical Guide to Following Jesus | Forward Movement

Forward Today: Sustained by prayer

Dear friends in Christ,

As I write to you in what feels like the tenth year of being stuck at home, I suspect you are experiencing much of the same swirl of emotions that I feel. Sometimes I am enjoying this time at home, especially since I usually spend so much time traveling. Sometimes I am bored. Sometimes I long for a return to normalcy, even as I know that “normal” will probably be different now. And sometimes I grieve the things I cannot do because of the coronavirus crisis.

I have good days and bad days, and maybe you do, too. Several things keep me going, and one of them is regular prayer.

If you have an abundant prayer life, wonderful. Maybe you wish you had a deeper life of prayer. Or maybe you have been in the habit of daily prayer in the past, but it just hasn’t seemed to work these days. We all wax and wane on our journey as disciples. There’s no shame in admitting we’ve wandered into the desert and we need to find our way to the oasis.

Someone years ago gave me good advice on prayer. Don’t wait to feel like praying. Start praying, and the feeling will come along later. We might imagine that next week we’ll feel holier or have more time. But the reality is that today is the day we can change. So let’s change today. It’s never too late or too soon to start praying.

Forward Movement has lots of resources to help you along the way. We have morning prayer and evening prayer podcasts. We have an app for Android or Apple that offers Forward Day by Day and the daily office. We have a whole website devoted to daily prayer resources. And of course, there’s our flagship offering, Forward Day by Day.

If you’re used to getting Forward Day by Day at your church, maybe they’ll be getting you your own copy at home. You can also subscribe and receive Forward Day by Day in your own mailbox or by email. If you end up with an extra, you can always give it to a friend.

And, of course, we don’t need anything to pray, really. We can just talk to God. If you talk to God regularly, I hope you’ll share your joy in prayer with others. And if you don’t, give it a try. God is always ready to hear our prayers, even when we’re not so sure we’re ready to offer them.

Yours faithfully,

Scott Gunn
Executive Director



Subscribe to receive Forward Today in your inbox.

Introducing Matthew
With Vicki Garvey

For six weeks this Easter, meet with other students from around the world for a free, live, online class on the Gospel of Matthew with Vicki Garvey, a respected teacher and author and former Canon for Lifelong Education at the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago.

In this class, Vicki will teach us about the author, origin, setting, and message of the Gospel of Matthew. Classes will meet live on Thursday nights via zoom from April 23-May 28, 2020, and they will last an hour.

This class is ideal for people participating in the Good Book Club 2020, and for anyone interested in learning more about the Gospel of Matthew.

Tune in!

Listen to today’s Forward Day by Day reflection on the Forward Day by Day podcast. Find morning prayer on the Morning at the Office podcast and end your day with the Evening at Prayer podcast. Available anywhere you listen!

New Release:
Come & See: Reflections on the Life of Jesus

Each day since 1935, Forward Day by Day has offered daily devotions rooted in the Word of God and love of Jesus. Now, for the first time, some of the best meditations from the past three decades are collected into one volume and arranged chronologically, from Jesus’ birth to resurrection. Although the devotions were written in different contexts by a variety of authors, this collection offers a rich tapestry of reflections, some poignant, others pointed, but all committed to a way of love.

Come & See is curated by Sanford Smith, a pastor from Omaha, Nebraska, who began reading and collecting his favorite Forward Day by Day meditations in 1985. Today, at age ninety-five, he still volunteers four days a week as a hospital chaplain but every morning, he puts first things first and opens Forward Day by Day to read and pray.

Due to the Covid-19 outbreak, the printing of this title has been delayed until late summer. Pre-order your print copy today, but also know that we’ve made the e-book version available early. You can find it on Amazon Kindle, Barnes and Noble Nook, and at the iTunes store.

In case you missed it…

New ChurchNext course: A Covid-19 Spiritual Survival Kit | ChurchNext

Held by Baptism: Life Everlasting in the Midst of a Pandemic | Earth & Altar

Keeping our Community: spiritual connection and physical distance | Grow Christians

Virtual Evangelism | Episcopal Church Foundation Vital Practices

Free Shipping on orders of $50 throughout April | Forward Movement


The Forward Day by Day Online Community

It is incredible and moving to witness the interactions of our online Forward Day by Day community. Each day, members of this vibrant and active community come together to reflect on the day’s meditation and pray for each other. And although most have never met in real life, they know each other by name and pray, grieve, and celebrate together. Join the conversation at prayer.forwardmovement.org and on our Facebook page. —Alyssa Finke, Marketing Coordinator at Forward Movement.

“A good way to start my day. Oftentimes there’s something very relevant to my circumstances; sometimes it’s an epiphany of scripture and many times comforting conversation from the Disqus forum. Try it out!”

“Best wakeup call every day.”

“Love your publication has been a constant daily reading in my home for years. You were asking about anchors in our lives other than Jesus. I lost my anchor, my best friend of 55 years ago to cancer and my favorite brother-in-law within a week to cancer. Your Forward Day by Day publications was a blessing. Thank you so much, and God bless all of you there.”

“I get up early to make sure I read this before I leave the house.”

“The reflections are right on target for what we face in today’s world. Rooted in Scripture for the ages, but I see the lessons throughout the day in the living world.”

“I follow Forward Day by Day online, along with a wonderful group of people. We love the inspirational posts and how writers try to be inclusive in outreach, inspirational, and empathetic, and also both timely and timeless. The posts are well designed to speak to us in the here and now but also to show how the word of Christ has remain essentially unchanged across the ages.”

“I am posting this in honor of Marshall Williams, a true FDBD saint who was referred to as the “Moses” of the online FDBD community. It’s very fitting that Marshall was able to soldier on in his fight against cancer to make it to one more Veteran’s Day. Marshall’s Dad was one of the “Greatest Generation,” men and women who sacrificed much for a noble cause. Marshall himself lived every day of his life dedicated to others. He is an inspiration to us all. We need more leaders like Marshall: leaders who listen, empathize, encourage, uplift. Peace be with you, Marshall.”

THANK YOU to our online community who provides us with inspiration and support, day by day. Your presence and interactions with us and with fellow readers mean so very much to us.

Read the latest issue of Odyssey here.

Your support puts Forward Day by Day and other spiritual resources into the hands of those who need it most. Thank you for your prayers and continued generosity!

Support Forward Movement

Dear friends in Christ,

We face a challenging time for the church and its members. Forced into isolation for our safety, it can feel like a painful exile from the familiar routines of life. At Forward Movement, we’ve been busy providing resources that we hope will be useful for the church and inspiring for its members. Many of these resources are free, thanks to your generosity.

You can imagine that hospitals and nursing homes need the most help right now, including spiritual support. The scriptures and devotions in Forward Day by Day provide a beacon of Gospel hope.

I have recently assumed the role of Pastoral Care Coordinator here at Billings Clinic Hospital. I previously served at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta, where we had great interest in the Forward Day by Day devotionals that you so generously provided to us each quarter.

I would love to incorporate Forward Day by Day here as one of the resources we can offer our patients, staff, and family members. I think they would greatly appreciate the perspectives provided in this devotional. I’d love to start with 100 copies. Can you help?

We received this request last week, and we sent 150 copies of Forward Day by Day, including large print and Spanish language, to the Billings Clinic. With your help, we will send more to hospitals that need them. Let us know of a hospital or clinic who could use Forward Day by Day.

Sales and donations sustain Forward Movement. As you might imagine, as we adjust to our new reality, our sales have significantly slowed. We always hope you support your local church first, but if you are able, Forward Movement could use your support now. We’ve walked with disciples since 1935, and we want to continue that journey with you through this crisis.

Will you make a generous gift to sustain Forward Movement today?

You can make a gift online, or call our friendly staff during business hours (800-543-1813) or mail a check to the address below.

Thank you for your financial support. And thank you for your prayers. Know that the Forward Movement staff gathers each day to pray for you and the needs of the whole world.

Yours faithfully,