Discernment: Theology and the Practice of Ministry

http://digitalcommons.acu.edu/discernment/

List of Papers (Total 9)

Fostering Healing through Narrative Transformation

The methodology developed for recent research originated from the idea that God is constantly transforming and adapting a congregation’s narrative. With this in mind, it becomes imperative for church leaders to discern how God continues to alter the congregation’s narrative in order to effectively reach out to an immediate context. To assist church leaders to identify God’s ...

Practicing Missional Hospitality in a Suburban Church

The West Houston Church of Christ is typical of many churches in North America that struggle to relate in meaningful ways to the surrounding culture. Over thirty years West Houston changed from a small, vibrant young church with a thriving family-like atmosphere to a large church in a new building, yet mourning its loss of family connections. It was struggling to find a new ...

Toward Just Hospitality

The ministry of Jesus moved through times of seeking justice, sharing hospitality, and withdrawing for prayer. Though inescapably “other” because of his divine identity, he sought solidarity with humans by becoming human and interacting with humanity through hospitable practices. The Ancient Mediterranean customs of hospitality were well-defined, but Jesus took this powerful ...

The Minister-Elder Relationship within “Churches That Work”

This essay is the summary of a research project focused on how the minister-elder relationship in Churches of Christ can facilitate missional transformation in an established church. Twenty-five reputable congregations of Churches of Christ were researched that were profiled as “Churches That Work” by The Christian Chronicle from 2006-2013. A survey was conducted of these ...

A Narrative, Missional Approach to Discipleship and Spiritual Growth

All Christians have the desire to grow in faith and knowledge of God. The difficulty is that most do not have the tools to help them accomplish the task. While churches desire to help their members grow in faith, many have never created an intentional plan to make spiritual formation possible. While there are a multitude of ways this could be accomplished, one avenue would be for ...

Through the Lens of the Cross: Cruciformity as a Model for Teaching Ministry

As the contemporary church travels deeper into the postmodern era, modern methods of education and catechesis have remained. In this paper, a foundational set of principles drawn from Michael Gorman’s analysis of Pauline spirituality—known as “cruciformity”—is examined and presented as a lens to inform and support the teaching ministry in churches. Gorman’s thought provides a fresh ...

Launching a New Journal: Problems, Questions, Answers, and Hopes

In the initial pages of this journal, we provide an explanation of its mission—rigorous and accessible conversation among those working at the intersection of theology and ministerial practice. We list the obstacles to that conversation, and the means by which this journal overcomes them. This essay also imagines and describes various settings in which an e‐journal containing the ...