Church work with young adults

CREATED TO CONNECT: RECAPTURING A GOSPEL UNDERSTANDING OF INTIMACY FOR EMERGING ADULTS IN A COLLEGE SETTING

Author
Erin Moniz D.Min.
Abstract
Christian emerging adults struggle in their relationships because they lack a robust theology of intimacy. This thesis examines and analyzes the problem by combining practical theology, generational studies, and a study of the culture of faith communities. Biblical support is offered by an exegetical examination of three Scripture passages that demonstrate the three intimacy motifs of family, sexuality/marriage, and friendship. Trinitarian and covenant theology reveal the theme of intimacy in the triune God and redemptive history. The doctrine of Union with Christ connects human and Divine intimacy through a Christological lens. An ethnographic study involving a focus group and sixteen interviews is analyzed in order to uncover the intersection of faith and intimate relationships in emerging adults. This thesis investigates the role of faith in the lives of emerging adult relationships and offers a biblical and theological theology of intimacy.

The road less traveled : pilgrimage and spiritual formation among younger Christians

Author
Nick J. Works
Abstract
"For hundreds of years pilgrimages were a vibrant expression of Christian spirituality. Following the Protestant Reformation pilgrimage as a spiritual discipline began to cease among protestants. In the last 50 years pilgrimage has made a cultural and religious resurgence in American life both religious and secular. At the same time younger Christians began to disconnect from the church in larger and larger numbers. These younger Christians became more mobile and travel much more often than older Christians. Pilgrimage as a spiritual discipline may be a spiritual practice that was attractive to younger Christians under the age of 40 that allowed them to practice their faith and remain engaged in their faith community. This study examined the religious travel practices of one United Methodist congregation to determine if younger Christians found pilgrimage practices as a suitable spiritual discipline." -- Leaf [2].

Research on the rooting of new believers in the ATA Church through the hospitality program

Author
Natalya Tsay
Abstract
"[In this project paper, the author explores the ways in which a congregation may] improve the level of hospitality among young people at [the] Ata Methodist Church through the hospitality program. The questionnaires were filled out before and after the hospitality program by 10 church members aged above 20. Some of them changed their attitude towards new people; others gained understanding about biblical hospitality. The author provided examples of practical workshops to the hospitality program to use it at other churches of similar scale. It will contribute into rooting of new believers at the church and expansion of God's Kingdom." -- Leaf [2].

A study on the restoration of faith and the calling education of the young adult as 'N abandonment generation'

Author
Dong Nam Shin
Abstract
"This is a study of the restoration of the faith of modern youth called the N generation. Their present-day problems are seen as the limits of capitalist development and the capitalization of the church. For solving this problem, I propose the theological theories based on the Scripture's calling and Luther's and Calvin's calling. For seven weeks in young adult worship, I preach a biblical theory and lead the small groups. Thus, I would like to think again about the basic calling of faith and help them to overcome their problems and restore their faith by finding calling. For that reason, this project for young people help them to realize the importance of calling and give them the time of thinking about their calling. This project will provide strategies to overcome their reality rather than escaping." -- Leaf [2].

African American millennials : silent observers waiting for the prodigal church to come home

Author
Daniel E. Moore
Abstract
"To say the relevance of the black church is in question is an understatement. The black church was once the social, cultural, and political sanctuary of the black community. Today, in many ways, the black church has distanced herself from the norms and mores of the African American struggle. Her agenda is disconnected. Her programs are irrelevant. Her social engagement is faint and distant. Her influence in the community is extraneous. As a result, black millennials, who represent the largest cohort of African Americans alive today, have waned in their attendance and commitment due to theological and ideological dissonance. Research regarding black Millennial beliefs and behaviors reveal that they have not rejected their faith in God, but they no longer see the church's relevance amid the challenges of everyday life. The resurgence of the Black Church depends on her willingness to engage black millennials by transforming herself into a culture that is loving, accepting, and embracing of the gifts, talents, and diverse nuances of the black millennial generation." -- Leaf [2].

A new model of a sustainable church for the next generation of immigrant Korean Christians

Author
Kang Won Lee
Abstract
"The Korean diaspora church in the United States served as an important cultural base for Korean immigrants over the first part of the twentieth century, but many second and third-generation Koreans left in the "Silent Exodus." Evangelism to this group of young adults is critical for the future of the Korean diaspora church. I examine a new model of planting church through the success of San Francisco Bay Area's "Embrace Church," a church led by and oriented toward second-generation Korean Americans. The success of this church in the deeply "unchurched" area of Oakland suggests a promising model for future mission directions." -- Leaf [2].

Study on activating Methodist class meeting and faith growth through "Bubu Sok-hoe" (married couple class meeting)

Author
Dong Uk Cho
Abstract
[In this project paper, the author examines how a church or ministry can] "develop effective methods [of inclusion] so that young adults' groups can participate in class meetings, actively serve small group missions, and grow their faith through 'Bubu-Sokhoe' (young adults and couple class meetings). 'Bubu-Sokhoe' carefully invites young couples based on their age, and whether or not they have children. Members are expected to feel comfortable, reach a consensus, and be ready to step into service and mission. This project focuses on the 'vitality of the small group', ways to encourage participation, and become responsible leaders through 'Bubu-Sokhoe.'" -- Leaf [2].

Will Training Young Adult Christians to Evangelize Using the Five Thresholds Increase Their Confidence and Comfort in Sharing Their Faith?

Author
Peggy Ann Gibson
Abstract
With the declining of church attendance in generations younger than baby boomers, churches must shift their focus from maintenance to mission in order to avoid an existential threat. Reaching the younger generations will require a more personal approach than new programs and events. Overcoming skepticism and distrust are key factors in reaching the younger generations. The Five Thresholds Model will increase the confidence of young adults in the overall practice of evangelizing and, more specifically, in the practices of sharing their faith and inviting others to respond. The peer-to-peer evangelism training increased participants’ comfort level and confidence in sharing their faith with others.

CHALLENGES RELATED TO THE TRANSMISSION OF FAITH TO THE SECOND GENERATION IN A SMALL SUBURBAN CANTONESE CHINESE CHURCH

Author
Teresa Gianakakos D.Min.
Abstract
This Doctor of Ministry project explored potential issues related to the transmission of faith to the second generation in a small suburban Cantonese Chinese church. It was initiated when the first generation at the church began to age, and the second generation who grew up in the church became disconnected and some even left the faith entirely.

Three qualitative research methodologies were employed to investigate the possible factors of second-generation exodus. Ethnographic observation, in-depth interview, and survey questionnaire were implemented. The first two methodologies extended to both the first and second generations at the church to explore their faith status, past experiences and perception of influences by Chinese and Western culture. The third methodology surveyed Chinese churches outside of this church to compare and contrast resulting data.

The methodologies were effective in eliciting data useful in recommending some possible considerations of ministries at the church. To produce these recommendations was also a goal of this project. The key conclusion was the first generation must be firmly established as a disciple of Jesus Christ, and live a transformed, holy life. Such transformation will not only touch the second generation, but also impact the surrounding community.

Towards a Holistic Education: Forging Integrative Approaches between Campus Ministers and Theology Faculty at Catholic Universities

Author
Rachelle M. Kramer D.Min.
Abstract
This thesis-project explores to what extent a synergy could be created between campus ministers and theology professors at U.S. Catholic colleges and universities that might contribute to a more holistic development (spiritual, moral, intellectual) of their students. The project overall seeks to learn how a holistic education can best be understood in Catholic higher education today as well as the factors that foster and hinder it. The experience of campus ministers and theology faculty, emerging adult theory, the Catholic Tradition, and integrative learning theory serve as dialogue partners in order to unearth new insights and concrete actions for the future.
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