Biblical Theological Seminary

A Discipleship Strategy to Prepare Chinese International Students to Re-enter China and Continue Following Christ

Author
Paul S Chi
Abstract
The discipleship strategy introduced in this dissertation was implemented at the Harvest Church of Madison located on the campus of the University of Wisconsin. The goal of this project was to develop a contextualized discipleship strategy for Chinese international students that prepares them for re-entry into their native country. Qualitative research was used to gain a better understanding of Chinese international students coming to the University of Wisconsin. It also served to assess the effectiveness of the discipleship strategy. The long-term success of this discipleship strategy is unverified. However, the research joins the conversation of churches and ministries trying to reach the enormous wave of Chinese international students studying in our campuses in the United States.

Helping Homeless Men at the Whosoever Gospel Mission Build Healthy Relationships with their Children

Author
Heather Rice
Abstract
This project seeks to help homeless fathers build healthy relationships with their children. After examining a biblical-theological foundation for understanding the identity and role of fathers as prophet, priest, and king within the family unit as designed and created by God, and conducting in-depth interviews with thirty homeless fathers at the Whosoever Gospel Mission in Philadelphia seeking to build healthy relationships with their children, key counseling issues are identified and a biblical counseling model is used to create a curriculum for one-on-one discipleship or small group study.

How to apply missional church in urban context of South Korea

Author
Sung Woong Lee
Abstract
The Precious People Church is a missional local church in the Seoul context. This paper examines the missional mindset of the Precious People Church. This research project is a case study that focuses on their homeless ministry, the primary ministry of the church.

Inclusion of people with disabilities in corporate worship

Author
Stephen M Wilburn
Abstract
This project investigates the necessity and practice of people with disabilities in corporate worship in the Evangelical church. Using a broad survey of churches in the mid-Atlantic region of the United States, this project demonstrates that many congregations do not provide opportunities for disabled individuals to serve in regular worship gatherings. Follow-up interviews with currently inclusive churches show that providing opportunities for people with disabilities to contribute to the worship service is manageable for most congregations and is beneficial to the church community. The study concludes with recommendations for churches seeking to become more inclusive.

A missional pathway for highly dysfunctional and dying churches within the Converge Rocky Mountain district

Author
Keith J Miller
Abstract
The purpose of this project was to create a tool to move highly dysfunctional and dying churches towards church revitalization within Converge Rocky Mountain. The researcher's project serves as a guide to awaken highly dysfunctional and dying churches--through a theological revisioning--to the mission of God within a culture where the Church is increasingly marginalized. To test the effectiveness of the researcher's project, two churches were selected as case studies. While both were affected by the project, it was revealed that the full cooperation of the pastor, leadership, and congregational influencers is necessary if the researchers tool is to help each participating church towards revitalization.

Evaluation of the forgiveness labyrinth as a stand-alone device to facilitate forgiveness between Christians

Author
William H Senyard
Abstract
The purpose of this project is to evaluate the effectiveness of the forgiveness labyrinth as a stand-alone, self-guided forgiveness intervention device, which is suitable for use in any local church context. The labyrinth can be set up and run in any church no matter how large or small. it is unique compared to other socio-psychological intervention devices in that it requires no expensive professional psychologist. clinician or therapist to run. It requires only an hour and a half to go through, and it is more effective than most interventions leading to emotional forgiveness by the Christian participants.

Catechesis comeback: the revival of classical Christian education for adults

Author
David W McKinley
Abstract
This project addresses the problem of the absence of classical theological education for adults at the Central Schwenkfelder Church in Lansdale, Pennsylvania. The following research promotes a thirteen-week course, addressing the core doctrines of the Christian faith in catechetical style. The project affirms that doctrinal teaching in the local church promotes proficiency in belief, behavior, and devotion by studying the Apostles' Creed, the Ten Commandments and the Lord's Prayer as a three-fold curriculum. The writer concludes that a return to catechesis shows favorable projections for training adults and youth in a postmodern context.

Hybrid course design model for alternative format courses at Biblical Seminary

Author
Susan M Disston
Abstract
Hybrid courses using web-based educational technology are a new development in higher education in the twenty-first century. The hybrid course design model was approved by Biblical Seminary's faculty in 2011 to meet the needs of the alternate format programs. The purpose of this applied research project was to assess the hybrid course design model in order to make recommendations for improving the model. The study included five courses taught by three instructors in the alternative format programs. The four key elements of the hybrid course design model were evaluated: 1) online and classroom activities, 2) interactivity, 3) teaching presence, and 4) administrative transparency. The results of the study were used to make recommendations for modifying the hybrid course design model, expanding faculty training in the use of the model's syllabus template, and improving the seminary's hybridization strategy for the alternative format programs. This study suggests that the hybrid course design model provides a sound foundation for effectively delivering courses in the alternative format programs.

Developing and engaging lay leadership in postmodern faith communities

Author
Jill Peters
Abstract
The modern church that exists today in the postmodern, Post-Christendom era suffers from a lay leadership crisis that is threatening the existence of many smaller, aging, mainline congregations. The church's hierarchical structures function differently than newer models of relationship based leadership. CROSSROADS at Moravian Theological Seminary focuses on lay leadership development through theological education, teaching practical ministry skills, mentoring lay people to articulate call, and developing spiritual formation. The purpose of this project is to translate these experiences and to suggest new ways to integrate gifted and called lay people into the mission of the local congregation.

The effects of a Bible study series on the missional attitudes and behavior within a congregation

Author
Michael R Clemmer
Abstract
The inability to relate to persons outside of the church community is a problem that hinders missional effectiveness in many churches. Attitudes and behaviors of church members often tend to have an inward focus rather than an outward, invitational perspective. This dissertation examines the depth of this problem as well as the effectiveness of the implementation of a particular Bible study series as a tool for cultivating a healthy missional culture in the context of a specific congregation. Fifteen local Mennonite pastors were given a descriptive survey to help gather qualitative data to identify factors that may hinder their congregation's ability to effectively reach out to the local community. A similar survey was designated and administered to a test group of Towamencin Mennonite church members to assess the missional readiness of the congregation. From the data collected from these surveys, an eight-week Bible study series was developed and implemented as a research tool. Weekly surveys were used to assess the immediate effectiveness of each Bible study. A final survey was implemented at the end of the project to assess the effects of the Bible studies on the overall attitudes and behaviors of the group. Several important conclusions related to missional change were drawn from cross-tabulation of the final data.
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