The Theology of Ministry paper is part of the Final Review for all students. The paper is first developed as an assignment for all MAGS, MACM, and MDiv students in BIBM 657 Contexts of Ministry. MDiv students will have another opportunity to refine this paper as part of their coursework in BIBM 658 Practice of Ministerial Leadership.
The Theology of Ministry paper is not a generic theology of ministry or practical/pastoral theology but a personal theology of your ministry. Allow your other course work throughout your degree program to influence your present understandings of ministry. Your goal is to demonstrate how your graduate experience informs your professional identity in a coherent manner.
Possible topics include: calling and vocation, ministerial practices, ecclesial understandings, relationship with God, self, and others, public witness, service, pastoral care, etc. For example, Nouwen’s Creative Ministry uses the categories of teaching, preaching, pastoral care, organizing, and celebrating. Tim Sensing’s schema is theology as a communal activity, theology as a critical activity, theology as a formative activity, and theology as a public activity.
- Include a 100 word single spaced abstract of your paper that includes a statement about your personal, professional, and communal identity. Include a clear and concise statement of your purpose for ministry.
- The power of metaphor communicates beyond our expectations. Choose one metaphor that describes you as a minister. Either identify the metaphor in one paragraph, or allow the metaphor to permeate the entire paper.
- The paper length is 10-12 pages, 12 pt. Times New Roman, double-spaced, Turabian, SBL, or Chicago style. Interact with key sources from your GST courses (examples) that developed your theology of ministry.
Please address the following questions in your paper:
- What are the biblical and theological foundations for your ministry?
- How does God’s ministry shape your practice of ministry?
- What biblical metaphor or theological themes inform your practice of ministry?
- How might context shape the practice of ministry?
- How does ministerial practice engage the public square or the world?
- How is your theology of ministry shaped by ecclesiology?