M131 Pastoral Theology and Care
In this course we will explore introductory pastoral care and counseling issues related to normal and crisis life events. We will survey a range of theoretical and practical issues related to the care of individuals and communities as they move through these life changes. Because listening and responding are key elements in the art of pastoral care, emphasis will be placed on developing skills in these areas. We will give particular attention to the integration of theological reflection, family systems theories, and practical skills throughout the course. As well, we will focus attention on cultural and communal contexts and the consequent strategies of care.
M133 Introduction to Educational Ministry
This course explores the nature of Christian religious education, its role and purpose in the community of faith, and the vital work of pastors as teachers in this important ministry. The foundational aspects of educational ministry are examined and basic knowledge, insights and skills for planning and facilitating this important work in the church are developed.
M134 Preaching (Preaching as a Communal Process)
Preaching is a cooperative process involving scripture, sermon text, preacher, congregation, and the Holy Spirit. All five elements work together to create multiple meanings within the context of the sermon experience. Out of this experience of multiple meanings, we are called to discern God’s Word for us today — not only as individuals but also as communities of faith. Preaching as Communal Process is designed to help students enter this joint project with a combined sense of humility and confident leadership.
The Worship of God is the source from which the church’s life and mission flow. In this course students will explore theologies of worship, learn some of the history and diversity of worship that informs current local practices and begin to develop the skills needed to plan, organize, lead, and reflect upon the weekly worship of the church with pastoral sensitivity, theological vision, creativity, and shared leadership.
M136 Congregational Leadership
The purpose of this course is to explore key topics concerning pastoral leadership of congregations. Among the objectives are to reflect upon what pastors do and the nature of the pastoral office; to study perspectives on leadership and leadership skills; to examine how pastoral leadership can help affect congregational change; to explore several areas of pastoral administration and the ways these offer opportunities to strengthen congregational life.