Spiritual life

The pastor's spiritual growth

Author
Alfred Buls
Abstract
This paper describes a disciplined program of study, devotion and meditation for spiritual growth. The paper describes devotions followed for a two year period. Devotions included Morning Prayer from the Lutheran Book of Worship, a designated set of psalms and sections of Scripture, prayer and meditation. The discipline also included a reading program. Included are suggestions for those who wish to follow a similar discipline and an evaluation of the two year program.

Spiritual formation in the local church

Author
Eugene L Miller
Abstract
The primary goal of the project was to discover more effective ways to enable the spiritual growth of members over sixty years of age in a United Methodist church. Generally, positive results are reported from the experiment. A theological concept of prayer with guided experiences was presented. The practice of journal keeping was encouraged. The material and methodology are effective if the spiritual director/pastor is willing to risk personal involvement by sharing his/her own spiritual pilgrimage.

A study of implications for ministry: alcoholism and its negative effects on spiritual experience and religious practice

Author
Jack F Reents
Abstract
The study investigates the negative effects alcoholism has on alcoholics' spiritual experience and religious practice, and shows the positive changes that take place as alcoholics complete treatment and work at recovery. The study uses questionnaires and interviews to obtain information from patients in treatment on admission, at discharge and following discharge. The expectation was that there would be a decrease in spiritual experience and religious practice prior to treatment and a decided increase following. The questionnaires substantiated this expectation. Over 90 percent of the respondents sensed spiritual growth important in their recovery and indicated a decided increase in religious practice.

A presbytery program of spiritual formation for candidates for the ministry

Author
Fred B Cunningham
Abstract
By providing spiritual director/mentors for candidates for the ministry the presbytery can serve the spiritual growth of the candidates and prepare them for a more effective ministry. The research and study consisted of the preparation of an annotated bibliography of spirituality in the Reformed tradition; interviews with candidates, ministers, seminary students and staff, and spiritual directors of Roman Catholic orders and institutions; and the analysis of books on human development theory and theories of spiritual direction. The project has resulted in a presbytery program of spiritual formation for candidates for the ministry.

Ministerial evaluation as a basis for ministerial formation

Author
Craig L Emerick
Abstract
The problem which the writer addresses is the need in the church for a humane, effective way of evaluating the ministry of the clergy in such a manner that evaluation can be a help for formation. The project first presents a doctrine of church and ministry with special emphasis on the United Methodist Church. It turns next to a description of the practicum which involved the use of especially designed instruments with four pastors and selected congregational representatives, in group and individual sessions. The conclusion is that ministerial evaluation can be so designed that it will contribute to the disciplining and nurturing of both the pastor and the ministering community.

The implications of student personnel's concept of student development for theological education at Bethel Seminary

Author
Richard E Daniels
Abstract
This thesis proposes student development as an essential task within theological education. Several sources for clarifying the developmental issues of seminary students were discussed. The primary developmental issues of Bethel seminarians were identified as: interpersonal relationships, personal and professional identity, human sexuality, and spiritual formation. Spiritual formation was selected for additional evaluation. A more effective response to this need was suggested in light of recent A.T.S. projects on spiritual formation and the developing theory of spiritual formation (e.g. Fowler and others). A student personnel model for student development was used which incorporates three change strategies: instruction, consultation, and milieu management. A three-year program of spiritual formation was proposed for bethel Theological Seminary.

From brokenness to healing: a journey--pastoral care and the spirituality of people from Latin America who have suffered torture

Author
Luis A Vera
Abstract
The author investigated the spirituality of people from Latin America who live in the United States and have suffered torture in their native country. He explored how the experience of these survivors is reflected or not in the liturgical and social documents of the Roman Catholic Church and expressed in the Hispanic liturgical tradition. Following the method of practical theology, i.e., a praxis-theory-praxis approach, the author began with the stories of torture survivors and considered these interviews in relation to different elements of the U.S. Hispanic community. He concluded with pastoral recommendations for ministers and suggested rituals of healing for survivors.

A study to measure the effects of spiritual disciplines on lay leadership roles in a multiple charge parish

Author
Stacy A Evans
Abstract
The research are for this study is the effect of the practice of specific spiritual disciplines upon the exercise of leadership roles by laity within a local church setting. The research question is: What is the effect of the practice of specific spiritual disciplines upon leadership roles by laity within a local church setting? A secondary question is: Does the regular practice of these spiritual disciplines promote change in leadership styles? The research design was to have a one day retreat during which a pre-test was administered to discover preferred leadership styles by laity and to determine whether or not those participating had a regular practice of spiritual disciplines; to conduct six two hour classes on the subject of leadership within the Church of Jesus Christ; to have a second one day retreat to summarize learnings during the course of study; to administer a post-test approximately one month after the second retreat.

Developing a strategy for “third-place” disciple-making in the Pasco Baptist Association, Pasco County, Florida

Author
Allen Pelham D.Min.
Abstract
The purpose of this project is to examine the how and why an association would develop a Third-Place disciple-making strategy within a cultural context. The project looks carefully at the mainline and subculture socio-demographics of Pasco County, mapping the possible Third-Place encounter points and assigning them to districts. By hermeneutically creating cultural narratives of each district, churches can train personnel cross-culturally to enter these Third-Place setting with gospel fluency contextualized to a culture or subculture. The strategy develops a narrative process for each of the people groups within the culture, identifies core strengths and weaknesses in bridging the district edges, and brings the gospel into their communities in the form and function needed for evangelistic disciple-making

The Art of Storytelling: Developing Discernment in an Age of Distraction

Author
Mark A Hamby
Abstract
Through the art of storytelling, twelve instructional lessons of Wisdom lay the foundation for the development of discernment in relation to Wisdom and Folly. The categorically prescriptive truths of Proverbs 1:1-10:1, Ecclesiastes 12:9-14, 2 Peter 1:3-10, and Hebrews 5:8-14 will serve as the building blocks for the development of Christ-like character. Four goals of this research are: (1) an understanding of the fear of the Lord; (2) an increase in discernment when faced with Folly's promises of prosperity, prestige, protection, and pleasure; (3) an increased motivation to yield to correction; and (4) a yearning to seek Wisdom as hidden treasure.
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