Tyndale University

A Contextualized Approach to Leadership Training in Jesus City Mission, Cameroon

Jerome Ebua Awah D.Min.
The goal of this project was to understand the approaches that should be present in a contextualized curriculum for leadership development at the Jesus City Mission (JCM), Cameroon. The need for an indigenous approach to leadership training contextualized to the Cameroonian African context, in contrast to the current adopted Western model was identified. This project developed a model for leadership training to prepare ministers for service in the rapidly growing JCM church. To reach this understanding, a participatory action research process incorporating qualitative data-collecting instruments was employed, interviewing and surveying of Ministerial Academic (MINACA) students and JCM stakeholders. A focus group of 8 participants was constituted, 10 MINACA former students and 25 current students were interviewed. Sixty questionnaires were administered to participants. We discovered that trainers must not only be qualified but must be conversant with the sociocultural realities of where training is taking place. Leadership training must be hands on. This information provided a foundation for the future development of various training processes in JCM and other Christian denominations facing similar challenges.

Past, Future, and Present: A Ministry Journey Unstuck in Time

Ryan James Lawrence Dr. D.Min.
In this portfolio the writer explored his ministry journey and identity through the lens of time, looking at his past, future, and present, in order to plot a course forward. In considering his past he examined how his theology of preaching had arisen out of his experiences and the relationship between biography and theology. In considering his future, he explored how the imagination could be used to help lead people and institutions to new horizons. In considering his present he researched how the COVID-19 pandemic had impacted preachers in his denomination, The Canadian Baptists of Ontario and Quebec (CBOQ), and how group story sharing could be used to aid in their healing and recovery. The research portion of this portfolio used a narrative study, the heart of which was a focus group meeting of five pastors, followed up by interviews in which participants contributed to the evaluation of the project. The key finding was that participants endured many common struggles and hardships, including the experience of “preaching into a void,” which described the hardship of speaking without a connection to one’s audience. Sharing their stories helped participants to understand and normalize these experiences, aiding in their healing.

Does God Call Laypeople to Preach in their Local Church? An Exploration of Calling and Introduction to Preaching for Laypeople in the Local Church

Curtis Allan Zoerb D.Min.
The purpose of this research portfolio was to identify if God was calling lay people to preach in their local church and begin to equip them for that calling.
Sitting in the pews were people whom God called and gifted to serve the church in many different ministries; some were called to share his word through preaching. Through this field project, these individuals were identified, equipped, and presented with opportunities to preach God’s word in their own setting. The two foci of calling and preaching were essential to answer the research question. Members of Massey Place Community Church interested in learning to preach were invited to participate in the study. Seven people responded. A six-week introductory course was conducted to teach about calling and how to prepare and preach a biblically-based sermon. We found that people were being called to preach, and four of the seven actively engaged as lay preachers. The question at the heart of this research project, “could lay people preach effectively in the Sunday morning service?”, was answered in the affirmative; there were laypeople that God called into the role of occasionally speaking from the pulpit. Further to that, this significantly benefited the life and growth of the church and positively impacted the individuals who preached.

Development of an Innovative Model of Congregational Engagement in Hospitality with Newcomers to Canada

Solange Agnès Belluz D.Min.
The main purpose of this portfolio was to develop a cross-cultural congregational engagement framework that would facilitate greater participation of congregants in hospitality with newcomers and refugees at The Peoples Church in Toronto. A central principle that emerged was the need to shift our ministry perspective from doing things to people to doing things with people. The framework developed as a result of this research included eight key principle and four key components: Learn, Engage, Assess and Participate (LEAP).

Hospitality is about welcoming others and making them feel at home. As someone who came to Canada over 30 years ago as an international student, I am sensitive to the needs of newcomers and refugees and the role that congregants could play in creating welcoming and inclusive spaces for them. I am also a firm believer that leadership is influence and that, through cross-cultural transformational leadership, we could create an environment where congregants would be motivated to welcome well.

This research demonstrated that there is value in meeting the physical needs of newcomers and refugees. However, effective engagement with the migrants and displaced needs to go beyond food, housing, and education. The research highlighted the need to create spaces where they belong; where they could be anchored to; where they can recover the feeling of belonging that has been lost in migration.

A Didactic Approach to Spiritual Formation:
Integrating Spiritual Practices to the Seminary Curriculum of the Diaspora of Chinese Students in Panama, Central America

Jacqueline Siu Yin Lam D.Min.
An awareness of God’s presence and a capacity to hear Him are two important elements to cultivate an intimate relationship with God for spiritual growth. This research portfolio seeks to answer the question: Will prayer encounters with God through the practice of praying with the Scriptures facilitate the participants’ capacities to hear God and increase awareness of His presence? The context for the research portfolio is seminary students and a small group of participants from the Iglesia Evangelica China De Panama from the Chinese diaspora in Panama, Central America.
This portfolio offers my spiritual autobiography (Chapter II), which traces the influences of three different Christian spiritual traditions (Foster 1998) and my professional training in various fields that have helped me hear God and experience God’s presence in my daily life. A four-year academic model and curriculum (Chapter III) is created from the experience of my spiritual formation and implemented for the Alliance Bible School of Central and South America. Finally, a field research project (Chapter IV) is offered to examine the effectiveness of Lectio Divina to facilitate prayer encounters in a small group of students from the Iglesia Evangelica China De Panama. The results show positive responses by the participants in their ability to hear God and experience his presence. However, practicing quietness remains a challenge for some Chinese Christians for their spiritual growth in the Panamian context.

Cultural Constructs in the Korean Diaspora Church Context and the Leadership Challenges They Present to 1.5 and 2nd Generation Korean Women

Lisa Hanmi Pak D.Min.
The purpose of this research study was to determine how the cultural constructs of the Korean diaspora church have presented particular leadership challenges to a group of 1.5 and 2nd generation Korean women and resulted in detrimental experiences. This study is important because it revealed just how limiting and hurtful systems of leadership can be when they are not designed to give opportunities to both women and men. This research study focused on the experiences of Korean Canadian women and created a space for the group to openly talk about their experiences through narrative research, appreciative inquiry, and action research. Findings pointed to cultural factors such as patriarchy, which served to reinforce male-centered spiritual authority, and collectivism, which undercut the women’s self-confidence in speaking up and asking questions and cultivated a dynamic where enough women were more comfortable in upholding the patriarchic status quo. It was clear that the Korean diaspora church must be more intentional in creating leadership opportunities for young Korean women and reconsider the cultural patriarchy that is embedded in the communal dynamic. The research findings were also not limited to the Korean diaspora church context; rather, an examination of how cultural constructs and systems shape perceptions of leadership, understanding of ministry, and of the individual leader is a principle that is transferable to other settings.

A Participatory Strength-Based Review of the Flexible Model of Training for Salvation Army Officers in the Finland and Estonia Territory

Geraldine Leah Lindholm D.Min.
In 2002, The Salvation Army in the Finland and Estonia Territory moved from a standard residential officer training model to a flexible, non-residential training model. The passing years brought changes within The Salvation Army and in the surrounding culture that impacted the new training program. Surface cracks began to show as challenges arose in a number of areas: balance, supervision, curriculum and fellowship. The need to perform a comprehensive review of the flexible training model was evident.
A participatory, strength-based review was conducted using, firstly, a focus group of five officers who shared their diverse experience of officer training. Secondly, an anonymous participant survey was sent out to all officers who had been trained in the flexible training model. Fifteen of the possible twenty-two responded, sharing their perception of the strengths and challenges of the flexible training model, and shared potential ways to make improvements. Eight important components related to a strong flexible training model were identified. These became the building blocks for a renewed flexible model of officer training through a three-year implementation plan.
This portfolio was written as a journey, weaving my personal leadership development, biblical leadership models, contemporary leadership theory, and participant action research into a celebration of leadership development within The Salvation Army in the Finland and Estonia Territory.

Developing Hearts on Fire Ministry to Ignite Next Generation Leaders

This portfolio examines how Hearts on Fire eV ministry developed. It assesses the ministry context of Hearts on Fire (HoF), its purpose and ministry values as a newly formed network that glorifies God and serves people. HoF is an interdenominational ministry based in the region of Franconia, Germany, focusing on the renewal of the heart and renewal of faith in Jesus Christ. The name, Hearts on Fire, is also the essence of our programme: to motivate Christians to restore their passion for Jesus, to equip them to serve, and to encourage them in their faith as Jesus did with the disciples. HoF partners with other Christian denominations to initiate new prayer groups and worship events, hoping to inspire the renewal of people's hearts and faith. The research project developed a seven-step framework to guide next generation leaders to implement change. This framework describes how we at HoF, bridge a ministry generation gap and how we can take the next generation on a journey toward a passionate Christian lifestyle by providing a platform for them to be involved in passionate prayer, dynamic worship, and sharing the Gospel through outreach. Gathering participant narratives was part of the research process of how to develop a heart on fire. Narratives were the tools used to engage the next generation in a conversation about what God was doing in their lives. The first research project outcome was this seven-step framework that can be used as a template to bring change and develop further ministry. The second outcome was the development of a next generation leadership day. This day became the platform to identify next generation leaders, to help them grow and learn how to pass on their experiences with God. They learned how to expose others to the experience of prayer, worship, service and testimony, and came to understand how mentors could play a significant role in their development as leaders who are “on fire” for Jesus (Lk. 24:32).

Grace Leads to Joy: Spiritual Formation and the Examen

The purpose of this portfolio was to study how best to lead church
congregants in Christian spiritual discernment toward spiritual formation. This
portfolio begins with the author’s spiritual autobiography and with that
knowledge the model of spiritual formation was developed. The spiritual model
can be pictured using an image of a wheel where Christ is placed at the hub (the
center) of one’s life and is connected to all the spokes (or parts) of one’s life. The
model works to encourage people to move Christ closer to the center of their
lives, where they can live and have their being in their “true selves,” as God’s will
Using this model of spiritual formation, a field research project was
developed to help spiritually form the spiritual leaders of the Oakridge
Presbyterian Church congregation towards a greater unity in Christ. Using the
Examen as a spiritual practice helped guide participants to focus and be
intentional about noticing God’s presence in all things and therefore helping to
keep Christ as the centre of their life. The field research component helped
determine how the congregation’s spiritual leaders had deepened their awareness
of the presence of God in daily life.

Trinitarian Spiritual Formation: Spirtiual Direction and Supervision of Spiritual Directors Within the Fullness of Trinitarian Life

In this Research Portfolio, the author articulates a contemplative evocative approach toward Trinitarian Spiritual Formation, from where discernment and ministry flow. This will be explored through three avenues. The first is a spiritual autobiography describing the author’s own spiritual formation in response to the question: How will I know God’s voice? The author’s discernment of vocational call to spiritual direction and supervision will be shared. The second is through the development of a Trinitarian Spiritual Formation Model as informed by Trinitarian Spiritual Formation anchored in trinitarian theology. In the face of hybrid forms of spiritual direction, this understanding of spiritual formation will be applied to the question: What makes spiritual direction, spiritual direction? The third is through a field research project that attends to the spiritual formation of Tyndale graduate spiritual directors. The project is guided by the question: Does attending to the spiritual formation of directors through a contemplative evocative approach better equip them to discern a calling to the supervision of directors? This research confirms that a contemplative evocative approach toward spiritual formation is helpful for discerning whether or not directors are called to become supervisors.
Subscribe to Tyndale University