Historical origins, beliefs, and practices of major world religions are examined, with the purpose of analyzing the impact of the worldview generated by each faith group in order to gain insights into potential points of contact for mission and ministry in cross-cultural encounters or in pluralistic societies.
This introduction to cross-cultural ministries and the principles which serve as their foundation is supported by case studies which provide insight into positive and negative experiences in attempts at contextualization. Traditions and theologies which Christian communities around the world have developed in order to express their faith and worship in meaningful and culturally-appropriate ways are also highlighted.
Biblical themes relating to the missionary concern of God will be examined. Additionally, focus will be placed on the manner by which healthy relationships between a sending church and various missionary contexts may be established and maintained.
The student will survey the entire learning ministry of the local church including worship, teaching, community life and service; all with age specific needs in mind. This course will enable the student to initiate a personal philosophy and practice of church ministry.
Reflecting upon the theological, historical and practical dimensions of teaching/learning, the student will develop an appreciation for how people learn to become disciples of Christ. The student will also develop a basic foundation of learning principles and practice using them in a ministry setting.
This course focuses upon leading a vibrant small group ministry. The student will embrace a theology of the church community and an appreciation for the longstanding historic role of small groups within the church. In addition, the student will acquire contemporary insights related to small group dynamics and the organization of a small group ministry within the church
In order to reach today’s children we must know today’s children – their worldview, culture, and understanding; their social, emotional, mental, and spiritual understanding; their need for attachment in the midst of constant change. The course covers this material then puts it into a biblical framework by examining God’s design for children, and His heart for drawing children to Himself.
This course examines salvation, baptism, and communion in relation to the child, looking at evangelical, covenant, and catholic theology, and highlighting the important role of parents in the spiritual formation process. It also covers essential aspects of children’s spiritual formation, considering the vital role of worship, discipleship, and curriculum in this process. Lastly, it looks at spiritually and programmatically supporting children and families with supportive care needs.
Core to any children’s ministry and discipleship path is a strong understanding of the teaching and learning process. This course will start by looking at Jesus, the perfect Teacher, and the Holy Spirit, the perfect Guide. From this foundation we will examine multiple theories and practices of solid teaching, learning, and early childhood education.
Ministries frequently reflect the spiritual health of the leader. Hence our study of leadership will start by looking at you, the leader. Where is your heart? What are your skills? How do you communicate vision, dissolve tension, or encourage weary souls? We will then look at the full topic of leading, recruiting, training, and empowering volunteers. Lastly, we’ll look at church-based family ministry which seeks to empower parents to be the spiritual champions for their children.