Contemporary Issues in Christian Ministry


Academic Journal (40%)
For each reading, you will be expected to have notes and questions prepared to use in class. Your journal should be clearly organized and put together. Each reading must have chapter heading and notes following that chapter or reading selection.

This journal will be collected and graded at the end of the semester.

Caring Well Training (10%)
Every student will need to complete the training on Caring Well for the abused. The program can be found on Moodle, as well as

Church Issue Research Paper and Presentation (25%)
On October 26, you will write and present a well-researched contemporary issue in ministry. Topics could include:
• Women in Ministry
• Calvinism vs. Arminianism
• Celebrity Culture/Instagram Pastors: Cult or Influence?
• End of Life Care
• Church Abuse and Trauma
• Diversity and Ethnicity Issues

The paper should interact with academic and trusted sources and contain very little online/google-able material. Papers should contain 1.) the main issue you are addressing; 2.) the competing sides of understanding in fair and charitable language (with biblical historical support); 3.) where you stand on the issue and why; and 4.) what difference does it make in life and ministry?
Papers should be around 2000 words in length and presentations should be around twenty minutes with ten minutes for question and answer.

Polity Presentation (25%)
In preparation for your final presentation, you are to interview with your Pastor and/or another Ministry Leader within your church. For that interview, you can ask many questions but report back to the class with a focus on these two:
• What’s the structure of their church? What’s helpful about how they run things and what challenges do they meet?
• What’s the biggest issue facing ministry leaders generally and within this particular denomination?

Following the interview, each student will prepare a thirty-minute presentation that explains and evaluates the church polity of your church denomination. For this presentation, you must review and work from denominational websites and texts that outline and explain its framework and organization in ministry. In addition to any online references, you must refer to at least four sources other than the course textbooks and the Bible. The purpose is for you to discover how your denomination and church operate within its administrative (authority) structure. You should answer these questions:
• What is the history of this denomination?
• Why is this ministry (denomination and church) designed and organized administratively in this way? By what biblical or historical basis?
• What kind of training is necessary for leadership? What’s that say about about excellence in ministry?
• What does day-to-day life look like administratively? Who makes decisions? How?
• How do their views on church differ from other denominations?
• What current issues or struggles are they experiencing? How is it being handled?