The following are evangelism electives currently being offered at Union Presbyterian Seminary.
Introduction to Evangelism (Fall 2015)
This course will engage students in a sustained reflection on the first of the great ends of the church, “The proclamation of the gospel for the salvation of humankind.” What does evangelism look like in contemporary postmodern and post-Christendom contexts? What do we mean by salvation and what is at stake in Jesus’ vision of God’s kingdom? Students will be challenged to articulate their own understanding of the gospel and explore innovative ways of being church in our rapidly changing world.
Travel Seminar to Ghana (April 2016)
Post-Congregational Evangelism (May 2016)
Are congregations based on anachronistic social capital models? Lee Rainie and Barry Wellman suggest that “networked individualism” is the “new social operating system” of the 21st century. Instead of focusing exclusively on attractional or program-based approaches to ministry that will have limited results in a post-Christendom cultural matrix that we cannot realistically hope to change, the church must also invest in the religious and spiritual lives that people are actively cultivating beyond congregations. This course will explore this new cultural reality and the practical implications of thinking about church as a social network. If people are no longer interested in going to church, the church must find ways of going to the people.
Evangelism in a Multi-Religious World (Fall 2016)
What does it mean to bear witness to the gospel in a pluralistic and multi-religious society? Does evangelism require Christians to insist that all other religions are false? Does God expect us to convert non-Christians? What does interreligious dialogue and partnership look like in today’s world? What are the ethical and political implications of public discourse about religion? To address these questions, our study of classic and contemporary theological texts will be supplemented by interactions with people from a variety of religious and nonreligious traditions.