Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Anne

Progressive Educational Ministry Consultant

Recommended Posts

Hello,

I am a Certified Christian Educator, Masters Religious Studies, with three years training in spiritual guidance/formation at the Shalem Institute (www.shalem.org). I have over 20 years of experience in urban large church settings, PC(USA), UMC, and UCC congregations. I am now working as a consultant to assist progressive churches who wish to inform, ground and expand their educational ministry (all ages) to reflect the progressive intention. Such educational ministry for children is based on a theology of blessing, and for adults, it is expanded to include spiritual formation understandings and practices. If you are interested in moving beyond theory to practical application, I would be pleased to have conversation with you. Resume and References.

Anne spiritguide@earthlink.net

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

post-642-1154143305_thumb.jpg

The level of adult Christian education in my oldline congregation remains low. What happens in education with adolescents and with some special women only groups is something I do not know. We have at this time three adult Sunday groups. We also have additionally, a Companions in Christ prayer group, a men's prayer, and a women's group that uses an acronym I can never recall. We do have a Thursday afternoon Bible study for retired people. Nothing of interest happens in it.

The Companions prayer group has descended into a blessing on demand group. The men's prayer group remains in formation. The total Sunday school participation in a congregation that average a bit over two hundred in attendance at the two services we have hovers around 29 participants.

 

The teacher of one of the Sunday groups used some excellent materials by Richard Horsley a few years ago. Now he pulls his lessons from long out of date William Barclay commentaries. Another group now lacks a teacher. The third group came into being after the husband of the woman who organized it sabotaged a study group that explored a book by Marcus Borg. I refuse to attend it. The one time I did attend, I heard an awful visual presentation pulled from a book from the Baptist bookstore.

 

The sad thing is that our congregation is filled with university graduates, professional people, college professors, and a pastor from the University of Chicago. My pastor is close to completing his second year with my congregation. Still, nothing happens in adult education in my congregation. I feel utter exasperation with the situation. No one seems the least concerned with this utterly disgraceful situation.

 

post-642-1154143700_thumb.jpg

Edited by Ted Michael Morgan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I made this post recently on another board. It concerns the state of Christian education in my home congregation in Baton Rouge. I think that it applies to Georgia for at least the reason that much of the content of it has to do with Georgia.

 

The level of adult Christian education in my oldline congregation remains low. What happens in education with adolescents and with some special women only groups is something I do not know. We have at this time three adult Sunday groups. In addition, we have a Companions in Christ prayer group, a men's prayer, and a women's group that uses an acronym I can never recall. We do have a Thursday afternoon Bible study for retired people. Nothing of interest happens in it.

 

The Companions prayer group has descended into a blessing on demand group. The men's prayer group remains in formation. The total Sunday school participation in a congregation that average a bit over two hundred in attendance at the two services we have hovers around 29 participants.

 

The teacher of one of the Sunday groups used some excellent materials by Richard Horsley a few years ago. Now he pulls his lessons from long out of date William Barclay commentaries. Another group now lacks a teacher. The third group came into being after the husband of the woman who organized it sabotaged a study group that explored a book by Marcus Borg. I refuse to attend it. The one time I did attend, I heard an awful visual presentation pulled from a book from the Baptist bookstore.

 

The sad thing is that our congregation is filled with university graduates, professional people, college professors, and a pastor from the University of Chicago. My pastor is close to completing his second year with my congregation. Still, nothing happens in adult education in my congregation. I feel utter exasperation with the situation. No one seems the least concerned with this utterly disgraceful situation.

 

In Georgia, Oregon, and Louisiana, I have never found a congregation that had one decent adult Christian education group. However, I did have other experiences, positive ones that defines a standard I now seek.

 

I was a student at the Christian College of Georgia from June 1963 until May 1967. Taking part in Christian College was one of the great boons of my life. I still treasure being accepted as a student at the college. Even if I were not a great student, I attended a great college.

 

During my time at Christian College, I immensely benefited from classes by Dr. Barton A. Dowdy, the dean of the college, and Dr. William David. In addition, I enjoyed during my final year at the college a one-on-one tutorial on Job with Dr. Roger Carstensen, a subsequent dean of the college. I still have Dr. Cartensen's fine study Job: In Defense of Honor and I own a collection of books on the Judaism recommended to me by Dr. Dowdy.

 

Along with classes, I enjoyed Christian College Fellowship a weekly social gathering on Tuesday evenings. These were not study sessions. They focused mostly on folk singing and other entertainments with modest study of a high school book about the Bible written by Robert McAfee Brown.

 

Before Christian College, I had the advantage of attending CYF regional conferences conducted by Dr. Bob Clark. Dr. Clark set high expectations for Christian Youth Fellowship that first taught me that one could be intellectually competent and still be Christian. That was an important lesson when I was fifteen-years-old. It changed my life. It completely changed my life.

 

Unlike most other students at Christian College, I did not buy an expensive new automobile. That let me preach every other Sunday rather than weekly. That allowed me to take part in campus religious life. My experience of Disciples Student Fellowship was a profound disappointment as it was to a friend who had once been the president of CYF.

 

That friend and I changed our involvement in university Christian life to Wesley Foundation-Westminster House, especially the later. We did this with the encouragement and approval of a Disciples pastor in Athens.

 

The fellowship and study that I shared with non-religion majors at Westminster House profoundly impressed me. I am still in contact with one of the former chaplains and one of my classmates at Westminster has become a major feminist theologian. At Westminster House, I enjoyed a disciplined prayer life, serious theological study with other lay students, and innovative worship.

 

I know that adult education can be much richer than what I have subsequently endured in Disciples congregations. Ms. Ann Bennett, Dr. Paula Cooey, the Rev. Milner Ball, the Rev. Roland Perdue, and the Rev. Dr. Bob Clark have all taught me that adult Christian education is not only possible but also vital to my Christian life. Ann was a Disciple who later attended the Unitarian Fellowship in Valdosta. Paula is a professor at a Presbyterian college in St. Paul. Her mother was a Disciple. Milner is a professor of constitutional law at the University of Georgia who writes on theological themes. He is still and ordained Presbyterian minister. Roland is still an ordained Presbyterian pastor. I have not been in touch with Bob in several years but he was fine Disciples mentor.

 

With all my heart, I believe that our lack of good lay adult Christian education is a great loss. I am a Disciple from the age of 15 (and a half) with years of non-participation and some years with an innovative Presbyterian congregation in Athens, Georgia and a UCC congregation in New Orleans. I have been a member of my Disciples congregation since 1993.

 

I am about to leave it if the situation with adult education does not improve almost immediately. With that, I assume I will be out of the Disciples for good. That is a shame for a denomination that produces some of the very best biblical scholars and theologians. I hope that our congregations in Georgia now stress adult Christian education. I know that I do not care about arm waving performances at church or being part of the mob at a mega congregation. I do care about Christian education.

 

 

 

post-642-1154160079_thumb.jpg

Edited by Ted Michael Morgan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I made this post recently on another board. It concerns the state of Christian education in my home congregation in Baton Rouge. I think that it applies to Georgia for at least the reason that much of the content of it has to do with Georgia.

 

The level of adult Christian education in my oldline congregation remains low. What happens in education with adolescents and with some special women only groups is something I do not know. We have at this time three adult Sunday groups. In addition, we have a Companions in Christ prayer group, a men's prayer, and a women's group that uses an acronym I can never recall. We do have a Thursday afternoon Bible study for retired people. Nothing of interest happens in it.

 

The Companions prayer group has descended into a blessing on demand group. The men's prayer group remains in formation. The total Sunday school participation in a congregation that average a bit over two hundred in attendance at the two services we have hovers around 29 participants.

 

The teacher of one of the Sunday groups used some excellent materials by Richard Horsley a few years ago. Now he pulls his lessons from long out of date William Barclay commentaries. Another group now lacks a teacher. The third group came into being after the husband of the woman who organized it sabotaged a study group that explored a book by Marcus Borg. I refuse to attend it. The one time I did attend, I heard an awful visual presentation pulled from a book from the Baptist bookstore.

 

The sad thing is that our congregation is filled with university graduates, professional people, college professors, and a pastor from the University of Chicago. My pastor is close to completing his second year with my congregation. Still, nothing happens in adult education in my congregation. I feel utter exasperation with the situation. No one seems the least concerned with this utterly disgraceful situation.

 

In Georgia, Oregon, and Louisiana, I have never found a congregation that had one decent adult Christian education group. However, I did have other experiences, positive ones that defines a standard I now seek.

 

I was a student at the Christian College of Georgia from June 1963 until May 1967. Taking part in Christian College was one of the great boons of my life. I still treasure being accepted as a student at the college. Even if I were not a great student, I attended a great college.

 

During my time at Christian College, I immensely benefited from classes by Dr. Barton A. Dowdy, the dean of the college, and Dr. William David. In addition, I enjoyed during my final year at the college a one-on-one tutorial on Job with Dr. Roger Carstensen, a subsequent dean of the college. I still have Dr. Cartensen's fine study Job: In Defense of Honor and I own a collection of books on the Judaism recommended to me by Dr. Dowdy.

 

Along with classes, I enjoyed Christian College Fellowship a weekly social gathering on Tuesday evenings. These were not study sessions. They focused mostly on folk singing and other entertainments with modest study of a high school book about the Bible written by Robert McAfee Brown.

 

Before Christian College, I had the advantage of attending CYF regional conferences conducted by Dr. Bob Clark. Dr. Clark set high expectations for Christian Youth Fellowship that first taught me that one could be intellectually competent and still be Christian. That was an important lesson when I was fifteen-years-old. It changed my life. It completely changed my life.

 

Unlike most other students at Christian College, I did not buy an expensive new automobile. That let me preach every other Sunday rather than weekly. That allowed me to take part in campus religious life. My experience of Disciples Student Fellowship was a profound disappointment as it was to a friend who had once been the president of CYF.

 

That friend and I changed our involvement in university Christian life to Wesley Foundation-Westminster House, especially the later. We did this with the encouragement and approval of a Disciples pastor in Athens.

 

The fellowship and study that I shared with non-religion majors at Westminster House profoundly impressed me. I am still in contact with one of the former chaplains and one of my classmates at Westminster has become a major feminist theologian. At Westminster House, I enjoyed a disciplined prayer life, serious theological study with other lay students, and innovative worship.

 

I know that adult education can be much richer than what I have subsequently endured in Disciples congregations. Ms. Ann Bennett, Dr. Paula Cooey, the Rev. Milner Ball, the Rev. Roland Perdue, and the Rev. Dr. Bob Clark have all taught me that adult Christian education is not only possible but also vital to my Christian life. Ann was a Disciple who later attended the Unitarian Fellowship in Valdosta. Paula is a professor at a Presbyterian college in St. Paul. Her mother was a Disciple. Milner is a professor of constitutional law at the University of Georgia who writes on theological themes. He is still an ordained Presbyterian minister. Roland is still an ordained Presbyterian pastor. I have not been in touch with Bob in several years but he was fine Disciples mentor.

 

With all my heart, I believe that our lack of good lay adult Christian education is a great loss. I am a Disciple from the age of 15 (and a half) with years of non-participation and some years with an innovative Presbyterian congregation in Athens, Georgia and a UCC congregation in New Orleans. I have been a member of my Disciples congregation since 1993.

 

I am about to leave it if the situation with adult education does not improve almost immediately. With that, I assume I will be out of the Disciples for good. That is a shame for a denomination that produces some of the very best biblical scholars and theologians. I hope that our congregations in Georgia now stress adult Christian education. I know that I do not care about arm waving performances at church or being part of the mob at a mega congregation. I do care about Christian education.

 

 

 

Correction: an ordained

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hello,

I am a Certified Christian Educator, Masters Religious Studies, with three years training in spiritual guidance/formation at the Shalem Institute (www.shalem.org). I have over 20 years of experience in urban large church settings, PC(USA), UMC, and UCC congregations. I am now working as a consultant to assist progressive churches who wish to inform, ground and expand their educational ministry (all ages) to reflect the progressive intention. Such educational ministry for children is based on a theology of blessing, and for adults, it is expanded to include spiritual formation understandings and practices. If you are interested in moving beyond theory to practical application, I would be pleased to have conversation with you. Resume and References.

Anne spiritguide@earthlink.net

:D Welcome Anne-Hopefully you will be able to post for us often. Bob ve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Correction: an ordained
During the past two years, adult Christian education in my local congregation has improved. I see some serious effort on the part of those who do take part in adult groups and classes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×