Introduction to Ministry in the Digital Age – CLCM 540

CG • Section 8WK • 07/01/2018 to 12/31/2199 • Modified 01/31/2022

Course Description

Martin Luther transformed Europe and eventually the world by taking his innovative theological beliefs and tethering them to an innovative technology; the printing press. Ministry leaders have a similar opportunity because of the technological innovations available to those who live in the Digital Age. This course provides a structured examination of the current digital landscape and a practical model for digital ministry in the 21st century.

For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.

Rationale

This course falls within the Digital Strategies Domain of Digital Ministry Practice and prepares students to perform a variety of ministry functions required of those who will be leading digital ministry efforts in a local church or Christian organization.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in the Course Overview. 

Discussions (4)

Discussions are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, they are designed for students to sharpen one another (Prov 27:17) as they engage with different topics relevant to online church ministry.  The student is required to create a thread in response to the instructor provided prompt for each discussion. Each thread must be at least 400 words and demonstrate course-related knowledge. In addition to the thread, the student is required to reply to two other classmates’ threads. Each reply must be at least 200 words.

For this course, our formal discussions will focus on reacting to selected comments from the book Analog Church: Why We Need Real People, Places, and Things in the Digital Age by Jay Y. Kim. Discussion Threads and Replies will be due the same modules: weeks in modules: weeks 2, 4, 6, and 8. Discussion threads are due on Thursdays by 11:59 pm (ET) and replies on Sunday by 11:59: pm (ET). (CLO: A)

Each student will prepare a major online church ministry blueprint that the student will research and write in five installments (sections) across the eight modules of the course integrated with course readings and other required course materials. The final version should be at least 6,000 words, double-spaced in 12-point font. The paper should conform perfectly to Turabian style and utilize at least 10 relevant scholarly sources in addition to the required texts and the Bible. Each module will require the student to write a new section and revise a previous section based upon feedback provided by the professor. The student should piece the paper together throughout the course so the professor will see the entire paper demarcated by topic headings centered on the page by the final section of the paper. (CLOs: A, B, C, and D)

  • Research Paper: Introduction and Overview Assignment - Based upon the reading of Chapters 1–3 only of the required text Ministry in the Digital Age by David T. Bourgeois, the required video presentation for this module, and previous course work in the Digital Church Ministry Cognate, the student will develop a general introduction and overview that sets the groundwork for his or her subsequent chapters. The first chapter should be 1,500 words, double-spaced, and use 12-point font. This section should also follow Turabian formatting throughout and be free from errors of grammar and syntax. This section should have a separate heading (Introduction and Overview) centered on the page.
  • Research Paper: The Virtual Body of Christ and Online Church Ministry Assignment - Based upon reading the required text The Virtual Body of Christ in a Suffering World by Deanna A. Thompson, required video presentation for this module, and previous course work in the Digital Church Ministry Cognate, the student will develop a biblical and theological rationale for online church ministry. This section of the paper should be 1,500 words, double-spaced, and use 12-point font. This section should also follow Turabian formatting throughout and be free from errors of grammar and syntax. Make sure each section has its own topic heading centered on the page.
  • Research Paper: Digital Design for Online Church Ministry Assignment - Based upon reading of the required text Ministry in the Digital Age by David T. Bourgeois, the required video presentation for this module, and previous course work in the Digital Church Ministry Cognate, the student will develop a digital design or general approach for an online church ministry at a hypothetical church. This third section of the student's paper should be 1,500 words, double-spaced, and use 12-point font. This section should also follow Turabian formatting throughout and be free from errors of grammar and syntax. Previous sections should each have a separate heading centered on the page.
  • Research Paper: Digital Strategies for Online Church Ministry Assignment - Based upon the foundation established in the previous section of the paper (Digital Design for Online Church Ministry),  reading of the required text, The Social Media Gospel by Meredith Gould, and chapters 4–7 of Ministry in the Digital Age by David T. Bourgeois, required video presentation for this module, and previous course work in the Digital Church Ministry Cognate, the student will develop a cluster of digital church ministry strategies that demonstrates how he or she will carry out ministry using the platform and digital design addressed in the previous section of their paper. This fourth section should be 1,500 words, double-spaced, and use 12-point font. This section should also follow Turabian formatting throughout and be free from errors of grammar and syntax. Previous sections should each have a separate heading centered on the page.
  • Research Paper: Final Edits and Conclusion Assignment -The final week of the course affords the student an opportunity to review, edit, and finalize the content, structure, and style of his or her paper before they submit it for evaluation. The final version should be at least 6,000 words, double-spaced, and use 12-point font. The paper should conform perfectly to Turabian style and utilize at least 10 relevant scholarly sources in addition to the required texts and the Bible. The final edited version should also contain a short final summary or concluding paragraph that encapsulates the content of the student's paper.

Website Summary Report Assignment

The student will go to Jay Kranda’s website and take a few minutes to browse the different sections available (Archive, Course, etc.). The student will then identify three resources among all those provided that are of special interest. The student will read or view each of the three resources, reflect on their significance for online church ministry, and write a 1,500 word summary report that integrates all three resources with what he or she has learned in this course (readings and presentations). (CLOs: A, C).