Theology, Practical

Building the program before building the building

Author
Donald G Fishel
Abstract
The author sought to discover a way to lead his congregation through a process of building the program before building the building. This project was accomplished by the author with the help of his congregation by developing a statement of mission and purpose. Goals for continuing ministries developed from that statement then led to the necessity of expanding the facilities and, in this case, completely relocating them. The new facilities were consecrated in June, 1981, with over half of the total cost paid. Without going through the process outlined in the author's document, this project would never have been completed.

Implementing a holistic ministry in a local Church of the Nazarene

Author
Gary Goodell
Abstract
This thesis-project sought to move a local Church of the Nazarene from an exclusively evangelistic concept of church ministry to a more holistic ministry. These ministries involved evangelism, discipling (nurturing) ministries and a variety of ministries designed to meet physical needs. The research method of this project was literary, involving an exegesis of the Greek text of the great commission and an examination of relevant, supporting scriptures. Further research dealt with a study of Wesleyan and evangelical antecedents in holistic ministry. Project results indicate holistic ministries strengthen the fellowship bonds of the local church.

Verbal sharing in Sunday morning worship: need and leadership methodology

Author
Gregory Steven Gertz
Abstract
This exploration verifies the need for effective congregational sharing and extracted methodological principles involved in the leadership of congregational sharing. "Sharing" takes place when an individual member of the congregation relates to the congregation an event he deems spiritually significant. Personal sharing requires a greater degree of self-disclosure and transparency than impersonal sharing. The research questions are: What is the most effective methodology in leading congregational sharing? are there discoverable principles? if so, how do these leadership principles apply to four specific parts of the sharing segment of the service: introduction of sharing to the congregation, contact with the person sharing, support of the person sharing, and response to the person who has shared? the results suggest five principles: 1) Teach the congregation what the Bible says about sharing. 2) Learn to be comfortable during informal worship. 3) Communicate acceptance to all who share. 4) Learn to be personable. 5) Be an encourager.

Pastoral care as enabling lay ministry

Author
Richard Thompson Stuart
Abstract
Effective equipping of lay ministers has far-reaching consequences for the church and world. Pastoral care, "the cure of souls" (often in a one-to-one relationship between pastor and people), takes on a corporate, comprehensive dimension when it enables and equips laity for ministry. Pastoral care, the church and the world are all enhanced when the ultimate goal is not solely the care or cure of souls, but ministry itself. Premises regarding each aspect of lay ministry are challenged by the results of a survey of fifty people involved in ministry, and follow-up interviews with fifteen. Results suggest methods of enabling lay ministry that are supportive within a local church. Enabling ministries call for worship experiences, various church structures, educational programs, and support groups.

The presentor model: experimental component of the field education program for raising and discussing pastoral issues using guest presentors

Author
Gerasimos Murphy
Abstract
The Presentor Model: an experimental component of the field education program at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Theological School for raising and discussing selected pastoral issues and topics using guest presentors. The goal of the project was to design a discussion forum that would: 1) deal with issues of the pastoral life of Greek Orthodox clergy and 2) serve as a model of a collaborative style of ministry. Most newly ordained Orthodox clergy are assigned to parishes as sole pastor immediately upon ordination. The project addresses this fact by suggesting that parish ministry is enhanced by the collaboration of pastors with other professionals. The project then sought to involve members of the community-at-large by naming and dealing with topics/issues of pastoral life, thereby modeling an approach to pastoral problem solving which would free the priest to confer with professionals in the community and make lateral referrals to other professionals.

The black church & the criminal justice system: a pilot project designed to train black clergy and laymen in pastoral care & counseling

Author
Garey Green
Abstract
The project was designed to get the participant involved in the criminal justice system and to help him by way of attitudinal changes toward the offender and ex-offender develop a ministry whereby his church and community would understand problems faced by the offenders and ex-offenders. Objectives included understanding the judicial process, cultivating better communication skills, and response to the redemptive love of Christ. The project was located in the Mount Zion Baptist Church, the local jail of Great Falls, South Carolina and the Catawba Regional Correctional Institution, South Carolina Department of Corrections, Rock Hill, South Carolina. More than 50 persons were interviewed.

The merging church: recommended strategies for unity

Author
Walter Radulovich
Abstract
This thesis provides strategies for the pastor involved in merging two or more churches. Additionally, there are strategies for a Joint Merger Committee, the Presbytery and the Session prior to the merger. The author interviewed 65 members in 16 Presbyterian churches that merged in six different Presbyteries located in western Pennsylvania, eastern Ohio and the Panhandle of West Virginia. The study results in strategies designed to assist pastors, Sessions, and Presbytery personnel so they can promote unity and provide an effective ministry in merged congregations.

Wise as a serpent: the practical theology of Reinhold Niebuhr

Abstract
In this theses, I argue that the Christian realist theology, purported mainly in the thought of Reinhold Niebuhr, offers the local church and its leadership a sound practical theology that encompasses both the forces of the transcendent and the forces of the finite world as we know it. I, therefore, make it my purpose to engage both the ecclesial moralist and the ecclesial rationalist within the practical theological discipline in order to contribute a pragmatic-liberal practical theology that will help the church to find both meaning and relevance in the twenty-first century.

The promise of community: sharing life together in small groups at Anne Ashley Church

Author
Gregory D Golden
Abstract
This project describes the development of a small group ministry at Anne Ashley Memorial United Methodist Church. The goal of the small group ministry is to provide an intentional setting for members of the congregation to grow spiritually through the experience of koinonia -- authentic Christian community. The project has a four-phase design: 1) a foundation phase for creating a small group ministry plan; 2) a leadership phase for training small group leaders; 3) a practice phase for starting new small groups; and 4) an evaluation phase for assessing the effectiveness of the ministry in the church.

Calvin's Institutes and the shaping of the pastoral mind

Author
Stephen M Wilson
Abstract
This paper reports an in-depth reading of and reflection of John Calvin's Institutes of the Christian religion, a classic exposition of Christian doctrine for training Ministers of Word and Sacrament. The purpose of this project was to engage an important theological text in order to be further formed as a spiritual person and as a pastor. The fundamental premise of this paper was to know God more fully, is to love God more deeply, which results in serving God more faithfully. This project led to personal spiritual growth and to a transformation of the author's practice of ministry.
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