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Full-Text Articles in Religion

Developing Adaptive Leaders: An Initial Intervention For Transforming A Church Culture, Molly Schroeder Apr 2019

Developing Adaptive Leaders: An Initial Intervention For Transforming A Church Culture, Molly Schroeder

Master of Theology Theses

No abstract provided.


Practicing The Journey: Forming Missional Christian Leaders, Mary A. Caucutt Jan 2019

Practicing The Journey: Forming Missional Christian Leaders, Mary A. Caucutt

Doctor of Ministry Theses

Introduced Episcopal leaders from a rural diocese to missional understandings of leadership, and coached them to lead a process in their local contexts. The process included listening (to scripture, one another, and non-church neighbors), discerning, experimenting, reflecting, and sharing new possibilities. Leaders grew in their capability and readiness to lead in times of adaptive challenge. Participatory action research data included surveys, transcribed consultation groups, participant weekly journals, and memos. I viewed results through the frames of Adaptive Challenge, Missional Christian Leadership, Participation in the Divine Life of the Trinity, the Leadership of the Holy Spirit, Luke 10:1-12, and Romans ...


Unity And Diversity: How A Bilingual-Multicultural Congregation Reflects The Nature Of The Trinity In Unity And Diversity, Albert W. Triolo Jan 2019

Unity And Diversity: How A Bilingual-Multicultural Congregation Reflects The Nature Of The Trinity In Unity And Diversity, Albert W. Triolo

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This project used the lenses of adaptive change, transculturation, church size theory, love the stranger, led by the Spirit, unity and diversity in God’s family, imago Trinitatis, and missio Dei to study how action research interventions might affect a culturally diverse congregation. It was found that understanding culture is complicated, homogeneous units typically stay apart but do come together, crossing boundaries of homogeneity is difficult, ongoing education helps for transculturation, transculturation comes mostly through conversation, and people can experience Trinitarian equality through transculturation. In short, the Common Culture of a Community is Cultivated in its Context through Conversation and ...


Breathing With God: Inhaling God's Spirit, Exhaling God's Reign, Douglas Scott Dent Jan 2019

Breathing With God: Inhaling God's Spirit, Exhaling God's Reign, Douglas Scott Dent

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This action research project engaged transformative mixed methods to determine the effect of directed interventions on a cohort’s participation with the triune God. “Breathing with God” embraces an inspiring by God, aspiring to be Christ-like, and conspiring with the Holy Spirit. Theoretical lenses included respiration and personality preferences. Biblical lenses included Genesis 11:1-9 (Babel), Psalms 42-43 (the deer pants), Acts 2 (Pentecost), and Romans 12:1-8 (church as body). Theological lenses included spiritual capacity and discipleship. Findings revealed that improved comprehension of personality preferences and spiritual gifts coupled with consistent spiritual practices improved participation and willingness to engage ...


Leadership And Faith Formation In Youth Ministry: Explaining The Relationship Between Leadership Experiences And Faith Formation In Middle School Students, Neil A. Christians Jan 2019

Leadership And Faith Formation In Youth Ministry: Explaining The Relationship Between Leadership Experiences And Faith Formation In Middle School Students, Neil A. Christians

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This research project explained how leadership experiences of middle school age students during their time in a youth ministry Confirmation program affected their faith formation. The lenses of Believing, Behaving, and Belonging were helpful in framing a missional view of faith formation. Results revealed these four aspects of leadership experiences to be important to the youth: leadership and helping others are connected, relationships are integral and vital within these experiences, there needs to be an element of fun by making the experience enjoyable and/or meaningful, and leadership experiences bring relevance to a student’s faith both inside and outside ...


Practicing Community: Naming, Claiming, And Practicing The Holy Spirit's Sending Of A Congregation In The Midst Of Change Into The Open Future, Meghan K. Gage-Finn Jan 2019

Practicing Community: Naming, Claiming, And Practicing The Holy Spirit's Sending Of A Congregation In The Midst Of Change Into The Open Future, Meghan K. Gage-Finn

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This project utilized social science research, through a transformative, mixed- methods strategy, to investigate a thriving, downtown Presbyterian Church (USA)

congregation’s missional awareness and response to change, disruption, and chaos in their midst during a major building expansion and movement into new spaces. This study explored in what ways members of the congregation relied on or adjusted their patterns of engaging in spiritual practices as a result of a change in their surroundings. This research shows how a greater missional understanding developed for members of the congregation because of a movement through a season of modification to both their ...


Cultivating A Missional Hermeneutic In The Evangelical Lutheran Church In Tanzania For A Common Participation In The Mission Of God, Ernest William Kadiva Jan 2019

Cultivating A Missional Hermeneutic In The Evangelical Lutheran Church In Tanzania For A Common Participation In The Mission Of God, Ernest William Kadiva

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This study explored the possibility of common participation in the mission of God between pastors and charismatic ministers who belong and serve within the ELCT Eastern and Coastal Diocese. The research question of this study was: How might a missional hermeneutic illuminate a possible common witness of the Gospel of the Lutheran Church in Tanzania with charismatic movements? This research utilized a sequential exploratory mixed method research design to gather, analyze, and interpret data. Statistical analysis was conducted using descriptive and inferential statistics. Both qualitative and quantitative data were compared, and a deeper understanding was established that allowed for conclusion ...


We Do Not Lose Heart: Missional Leadership In Dying Congregations, Douglas M. Peterson Jan 2019

We Do Not Lose Heart: Missional Leadership In Dying Congregations, Douglas M. Peterson

Doctor of Ministry Theses

Reading this paper will not show you how to save your dying congregation, nor will it help you euthanize it. This project likens missional leadership to a hospice intervention: in the face of an adaptive challenge, the pastor creates an environment in which the congregation can find the support, confidence, and encouragement it needs. This pragmatic action research project utilized a transformative mixed method design to impact missional pastors serving in dying congregations in the Montana Synod of the ELCA. The primary intervention model was a missional search conference. Biblical lenses included 2 Corinthians 4 and Matthew 25:31-46. Theological ...


Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow: Innovating, Evaluating, And Improving Worship To Participate In God's Mission, Andrew K. Barnett Jan 2019

Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow: Innovating, Evaluating, And Improving Worship To Participate In God's Mission, Andrew K. Barnett

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This case study asks how a Cathedral might innovate, evaluate, and improve worship to participate more fully in God’s mission. Theoretical frameworks include: Missional Church (Zscheile, Keifert, Bosch), Adaptive Leadership (Heifetz, Linsky), Playful Acts in Scripture (Taylor), Doxology (Anderson), and utilizes Mixed-Methods Social Science Research. The central findings are that participation leads to transformation in worship, engagement helps communities innovate together, and innovation requires prolonged investment. Theoretical codes yielded a model of church as sailing vessel: seeking transformation, balancing identity with financial realities, dependent on trust, steered by a sense of shared purpose, and powered by the Holy Spirit ...


Remember My Chains: New Testament Perspectives On Incarceration, Matthew L. Skinner Jul 2018

Remember My Chains: New Testament Perspectives On Incarceration, Matthew L. Skinner

Faculty Publications

Understanding the physical realities and social attitudes concerning incarceration in the ancient world provides a fuller context to the New Testament’s unadorned and ambiguous references to people’s experience of being held in custody. The context is crucial for interpreting biblical passages that commend caring for prisoners, that reaffirm God’s strength and nullify the ignominy associated with incarceration, and that declare God’s power over the means and motives of imperial coercion. Such passages also compel the contemporary church to advocate on behalf of prisoners and to denounce the systems that regularly victimize them.


The Rupture That Remains: A Trauma-Informed Pastoral Theology, Eric Worringer May 2018

The Rupture That Remains: A Trauma-Informed Pastoral Theology, Eric Worringer

Master of Theology Theses

No abstract provided.


The Need For Older Adults’ Ministry In The Evangelical Church Winning All (Ecwa), Bitrus Habu Bamai May 2018

The Need For Older Adults’ Ministry In The Evangelical Church Winning All (Ecwa), Bitrus Habu Bamai

Master of Theology Theses

No abstract provided.


Liberating The Imago Dei: An Examination Of Jewish And Christian Feminist Biblical Anthropology, Carissa S. Wyant May 2018

Liberating The Imago Dei: An Examination Of Jewish And Christian Feminist Biblical Anthropology, Carissa S. Wyant

Doctor of Philosophy Theses

This study provides a comparative analysis of the work of Roman Catholic feminist theologian Elizabeth Johnson and that of Jewish feminist theologian Judith Plaskow, who have both sought to reconstruct the Imago Dei (“image of God”) within their respective traditions. By way of this analysis, it makes a methodological and a substantive contribution. Methodologically, it expands on Elizabeth Schüssler-Fiorenza’s feminist critical approach to reading Scripture by relating it to Francis Clooney’s comparative theological approach to reading texts in religious traditions other than one’s own. Although there have been attempts at comparisons of various religious traditions from a ...


(Re)Discovering A Midrashic Biblical Imagination For The Progressive-Liberal Community, Elisabeth R. Jones May 2018

(Re)Discovering A Midrashic Biblical Imagination For The Progressive-Liberal Community, Elisabeth R. Jones

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This thesis presents the case for the development of a sustainable community practice of midrashic biblical imagination as a catalyst for transformative engagement with the Bible in progressive Christian congregations. Notes that a midrashic imagination applied to the polyvalent testimonies of the biblical canon is an apt partner for post- modern, progressive congregations, whose theology embraces diversity, plurality, and critique of hegemonic structures. Uses a longitudinal qualitative methodology, with Appreciative Inquiry, to trace the various methods used for cultivating curiosity among Scriptural skeptics over nine years, concluding with the Midrashic Imagination Project, which involves the community in study, worship, preaching ...


Hauge’S Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Synod In America And The Continuation Of The Haugean Spirit In Twentieth-Century American Lutheranism, Thomas E. Jacobson May 2018

Hauge’S Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Synod In America And The Continuation Of The Haugean Spirit In Twentieth-Century American Lutheranism, Thomas E. Jacobson

Doctor of Philosophy Theses

This thesis explores the history and enduring legacy of Haugeanism in American Lutheranism, a tradition that has been overlooked in the scholarship of recent decades. Originally, this lay-led Norwegian movement sought to enhance the spiritual life of Norwegian Lutherans within the established church and was fueled by the revival activity of Hans Nielsen Hauge in Norway. It became transplanted on American soil with the immigration of the nineteenth century. The interaction in America between the low-church Haugeans and their more formal counterparts rooted in the state church of Norway reveals that a sense of friction existed between the two emphases ...


Seeing Salvation: The Effectiveness Of Preaching On The Sacramental Life In A Salvation Army Context, Steven Mark Cameron May 2018

Seeing Salvation: The Effectiveness Of Preaching On The Sacramental Life In A Salvation Army Context, Steven Mark Cameron

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This thesis begins by acknowledging that The Salvation Army is a non-practicing sacramental church. The Army abandoned the practice of the sacraments of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper officially in 1883 and its focus since then has been on developing holiness through sacramental living. The sacraments have been a topic of theological conversation in Army since the 1883 decision. In recent years, in Canada, this conversation has become increasingly divisive with questions being raised as to the soundness of the Army’s position. To bring opposing positions into a place of dialogue this thesis project engages in a five ...


Recapture The Call: A Theology Of Preaching As Proclamation In The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Tricia L. Tedrow May 2018

Recapture The Call: A Theology Of Preaching As Proclamation In The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Tricia L. Tedrow

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This thesis explores preaching as proclamation in light of recent changes to the title and description for ordained ministers in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Reflection on Scripture, confessional statements of the denomination and writings on the theology of preaching lead to a theology of preaching as proclamation written by the author. Two sermons are compared to show how the creation of a theology of preaching sharpens one’s preaching. The thesis concludes with reflections on how style, voice and the issue of power in proclamation have a place in the future of preaching in the Presbyterian Church (U ...


Digital And Analog Preaching In A Multi-Media World, Ramona Hayes May 2018

Digital And Analog Preaching In A Multi-Media World, Ramona Hayes

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This thesis explores the reception of sermons by two groups: “Analogs,” people who were formed primarily through the written page and who gather and process information linearly, and “Digitals,” people who were formed by digital communication and who gather and process information in sound bites. Using the Action/Reflection model, a series of sermons was presented: a manuscript sermon, an integrated worship/sermon, a TED Talk style sermon, a participatory sermon, and a multiple learning style sermon. Preaching a sermon which engages both groups has the potential to increase engagement with the biblical text and growth in faith.


Table, Food, Waiter: Preaching The Eucharist To Today’S Popular Food Culture, Richard W. Vevia Jr May 2018

Table, Food, Waiter: Preaching The Eucharist To Today’S Popular Food Culture, Richard W. Vevia Jr

Doctor of Ministry Theses

The centrality of the Eucharist to the Church cannot be underestimated. In the late 20th and early 21st centuries, decreased frequency of shared meals, a growing distrust of food, and a disregard for the obligations and responsibilities that accompany eating have resulted in a disconnection between the Eucharist and daily life. This thesis will demonstrate the loci method derived from Philip Melanchthon’s Loci Communes as a tool for gathering scripture and non-scriptural sources around loci suggested by Catherine of Siena: Table, Food, and Waiter. The aim of this thesis is that it will aid preachers preparing sermons that address ...


Confessional Biblical Preaching In The Face Of Whiteness: Challenging The Preacher’S Understanding Of White Supremacy, Laurie P. Feille May 2018

Confessional Biblical Preaching In The Face Of Whiteness: Challenging The Preacher’S Understanding Of White Supremacy, Laurie P. Feille

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This thesis addresses the need for preachers to hear the voices of people of color, to hear the “prophets in the streets,” specifically African-Americans, and to have their eyes opened to their own white privilege and role in white supremacy. This thesis argues that this is an important step in preachers finding their confessional voices for preaching before they can begin to help the individual members of those congregations become aware of their individual and collective white privilege and role in white supremacy. With the help of black clergy a “Twin Cities Pilgrimage” was created. This involved learning the stories ...


Nearer My God To Thee: How Biblical Preaching Fosters Intimacy With God, Warren Lee Domenick Jr May 2018

Nearer My God To Thee: How Biblical Preaching Fosters Intimacy With God, Warren Lee Domenick Jr

Doctor of Ministry Theses

We desire it. We long to be in its presence. We look for it in everything we see and hear and smell and touch and taste. We someday hope to have it surrounding us, holding us close. It is intimacy with God. Moreover, in it, we are somehow able to find a connection with God. Intimacy with God first belongs to God. God is the measure by which all intimacy is evaluated. Some would say that God is intimacy. God is revealed to us through intimacy which is both accurate and right; one might say, an intimacy that is authentic ...


Real People, Real Faith, Real God: Encountering The Divine In Preaching Biblical Characters, Cynthia Halvorson May 2018

Real People, Real Faith, Real God: Encountering The Divine In Preaching Biblical Characters, Cynthia Halvorson

Doctor of Ministry Theses

Using the Action/Reflection method, this project examines sermons which aim at the heart by using character development within a storytelling sermon style. This thesis considers the effectiveness of intentional reimagining of biblical witnesses by overlying behavioral styles and archetypical fears and desires onto various characters of the Gospel of John. It designs a methodology for intentional development of characters and examines the responses of the listeners. It asserts the value of creating space within a sermon for the listener to encounter the Divine by identifying with the people of scripture.


Preaching To Shape Christian Witness: He Cannot Be The Messiah, Can He?, Christine M. Bellefeuille May 2018

Preaching To Shape Christian Witness: He Cannot Be The Messiah, Can He?, Christine M. Bellefeuille

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This action-reflection project explores the effectiveness of preaching in shaping witnesses to tell their own stories of their experiences of God. Uses preaching that models witness, helps the listener identify experiences of God and offers language for disciples to use in their own witness. Also explores the challenges of preaching to a congregation that has experienced uncertain theological grounding and conflict. Other considerations explored are trust, changing calls mid-doctoral program, and project fit.


And Their Eyes Were Opened: The Call To Paradox, Bruce L. Jacobson May 2018

And Their Eyes Were Opened: The Call To Paradox, Bruce L. Jacobson

Master of Arts Theses

No abstract provided.


From Busy Bags To Building Bridges: An Investigation In How The Intentional Engagement Of Children In Worship Can Assist Cultural Inclusivity, Billie Jo Wicks May 2018

From Busy Bags To Building Bridges: An Investigation In How The Intentional Engagement Of Children In Worship Can Assist Cultural Inclusivity, Billie Jo Wicks

Children, Youth, and Family (CYF) Papers

No abstract provided.


The Word-Of-God Conflict In The Lutheran Church Missouri Synod In The 20th Century, Donn Wilson Apr 2018

The Word-Of-God Conflict In The Lutheran Church Missouri Synod In The 20th Century, Donn Wilson

Master of Theology Theses

No abstract provided.


Definitively Lutheran?: An Exploration Of Definitive Lutheran Characteristics In Higher Education, John Eggen Apr 2018

Definitively Lutheran?: An Exploration Of Definitive Lutheran Characteristics In Higher Education, John Eggen

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This mixed-method, exploratory case study explores definitively Lutheran practices in higher education. This research explores emerging themes from Intersections and other publications reflecting upon institutional religious identity. This research explores the student experiences, expectations, and perspectives through a student survey and the perspectives of institutional leadership through qualitative research. It evaluates definitive characteristics of Lutheran higher education through the lenses of adaptive change, organizational theory, open systems theory, Lutheran identity, vocation, and exploring an understanding of missional, cruciform, perichoretic communities from the Pauline epistles. The results reveal limited statistically significant difference among students based on religious affiliation, but a divergent ...


Lutheran Higher Education In A Secular Age: Religious Identity And Mission At Elca Colleges And Universities, Brian A.F. Beckstrom Apr 2018

Lutheran Higher Education In A Secular Age: Religious Identity And Mission At Elca Colleges And Universities, Brian A.F. Beckstrom

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This exploratory mixed methods case study examined the relationship between espoused and perceived religious identity and mission at five colleges and universities of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America through the lenses of secularization theory, missional leadership, ecclesiology, Trinitarian theology, adaptive leadership, and challenges in the higher education market. Results indicated that humanism is the primary means of describing religious identity and mission at ELCA schools and there are widely varying assumptions about what it means to be a college or university of the church. Advocates and skeptics of the institution’s religious identity and mission interpret reality through the ...


Faith Formation For Families In A Post-Programmatic Era, Susan Megrund Apr 2018

Faith Formation For Families In A Post-Programmatic Era, Susan Megrund

Doctor of Ministry Theses

This thesis project sought to answer the question: What are effective ways for congregations to engage in ways of faith formation that encourage spiritual growth and Christian identity in over-programmed families, so they may see God as an active subject in their daily lives? The research in this thesis included case studies from the current congregation I am serving in, and other selected congregations. While implementing my research, I discovered that we struggle to find the right language around how to address the issue of busy families. When asking colleagues for input, the responses went back to the implementation of ...


Perichoretic Worship: Cultivating Relationships With The Triune God, With One Another, And With The World, Greg G. Busboom Apr 2018

Perichoretic Worship: Cultivating Relationships With The Triune God, With One Another, And With The World, Greg G. Busboom

Doctor of Ministry Theses

A Participatory Action Research (PAR) study focusing on perichoretic worship as a way of cultivating holy relationship with the Triune God, with others, and with the world. Theoretical lenses include ritual studies, Faith Development Theory, and personhood in social relationships. Theological lenses include perichoresis, Lutheran worship, and faith practices. Using both quantitative and qualitative research, the study explores the practice of Christian worship in a large Lutheran congregation and seeks to grow active participation in the missional work of the Triune God through worship grounded in Word and Sacrament. Presents the Triune God as the active subject of Christian worship.