Note: We will not meet on February 27 in order to give you the time to prepare your literature reviews.
The major paper for this spring semester of the second year colleague group is a preliminary draft of your D.Min major ministry project proposal. Toward that end we will give attention in class to:
- How individuals and organizations/congregations change.
- The situation in your ministry setting with which your major project will deal and the outcomes related to that situation for which you hope.
- What the literature has to say about the nature of the outcomes you envision and how to realize them.
- Putting all the pieces of a project proposal into a coherent and defensible document.
As a reminder, the seminary catalogue says the following about “The Ministry Project” and related proposal:
The Ministry Project will involve the design, implementation, and evaluation of an action in ministry and reflection on its process and outcome. It should address a significant situation or issue within the student’s ministry setting and set out a strategy to effect change in that setting, transforming and/or intensifying the faith and practice of the religious community. . .
Students who have successfully completed Colleague Seminars I and II and at least four of the six elective courses, and have the approval of their advisor, may submit a Ministry Project Proposal for oral examination by a committee of the faculty. Committee members are chosen by the Dean of the Seminary and will include the student’s advisor and two readers. The examining committee’s approval of the proposal constitutes admission to candidacy for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
Students will submit a 20-25page Project Proposal for this exam. This proposal should demonstrate the student’s ability to draw widely and deeply on work they have done in the Colleague Seminars and other courses in the program, strategically integrating that learning around the particular action in ministry the student proposes to undertake.
The proposal should begin with a succinct statement of what the student hopes to accomplish, followed by 1) explicit attention to and grounding in the student’s context of ministry, showing how the proposed project addresses and grows out of the social realities internal and external to that specific place; 2) an explication of the theology that calls forth the proposed project’s action, including attention to scholarly sources and sacred traditions, to relevant theoretical analyses, and to the student’s own experiences and convictions; 3) a detailed outline of the actions the student wishes to undertake, showing how those actions are grounded in an understanding of the specific practices of ministry the student will use; and 4) a brief description of how the student plans to evaluate the proposed Ministry Project.
- Reading : Guidelines for Doctor of Ministry Project Proposals and Examination, available at the Student Forms Center (located at 77 Sherman Street on the 2 ndfloor) or on the web.
- Short Written Assignments:
- I presume that all of you are in some way Arminian in your theology of humankind, and therefore believe in human agency – that is, believe in the capacity for human beings to make choices and to impose those choices on the world. Presuming this I would like you to bring to class to share with your colleagues a one page reflection on what YOUR THEOLOGY and YOUR LEADERSHIP EXPERIENCE tell you about (1) HOW individuals make decisions and act on them, and therefore (2) HOW a congregational leader can motivate or otherwise direct a GROUP of persons in the congregation to do something new or different.
- Two paragraphs on no more than one page, one paragraph describing the SITUATION IN YOUR MINISTRY SETTING THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO CHANGE through your ministry project; and the second paragraph describing the SITUATION THAT YOU HOPE WILL RESULT because of your ministry project.
- Lunch at the Seminary with the first year class.
February 27 -- No formal class. However, I will be present in the classroom from 10:00 – noon for anyone who would like to talk about either their literature review or their project proposal.
March 13 and April 3: Literature Reviews
- Literature Reviews: Five or six students will present, at each class session, a review of the literature and “available wisdom” dealing with (1) programmatic outcomes, design and implementation/change strategies in the anticipated area of their ministry project, and with (2) the design and implementation/change strategy currently most appealing to the student. The presentation should be based on a written text handed-out to one’s colleagues. Class discussion related to each presentation will address: (A) the adequacy of the breadth and depth of the review and possible suggestions of additional sources; and (B) the rationale for and appropriateness of the presenter’s current “choice” via a vie the presenter’s ministry setting, theology for ministry, personal gifts for leadership and desired outcomes. Note: this is a substantial and demanding piece of work, involving a considerable amount of reading and reflection – which is why we are not meeting as a class on February 27. We will discuss the nature of a literature review at the January 30 class, and a set of guidelines and minimum expectations is attached to this course outline.
- Reading: Misc articles on organizational change distributed at the prior class.
April 24 and May 8: Project Proposals
- Five or six students will present, at each class session, their preliminary draft ministry project proposals for class critique and discussion. If it is possible to have your advisor present for the presentation and discussion, so much the better.