Update: February 1, 2007
I have placed the syllabus below.
I thought I would list here on the blog what books I am requiring in my Taylor University Christian Educational Ministries 352 course this spring which starts next Wednesday, January 31st. I have 26 students in the course spread out over two sections. They are all juniors and seniors.
We will begin the course by attending a workshop at Granger Community Church next Friday, February 2nd called First Impressions: Creating Wow Experiences at Your Church with Mark Waltz who has a book by the same title and also has a blog. If you are near South Bend, Indiana, come check it out and we can chat about it!
I told the students this about the workshop:
The reason we are going is that Granger does programming better than most any church in the nation. They are known for their excellence and expertise. They were rated in a recent Outreach Magazine survey as the #2 innovative church in the nation (though one of their pastors helped organize the survey). In this workshop, we will see many of the principles of the course demonstrated: goal-setting, strategic planning and evaluation. I hope you will be impressed by Granger's zeal for evangelism and its programming excellence. This trip will also launch us into a semester-long discussion about what we can learn from the megachurch and what we might question.
COURSE TEXTS (We will be using the six books in this order).
1. Stevens, Tim and Tony Morgan. Simply Strategic Stuff: Help for Leaders Drowning in the Details of Running a Church. Loveland, CO: Group Publishing, 2003. $13 (Required last year so there are a number of CEM seniors with this book).
The Stevens/Morgan book is excellent for becoming a wiser, more competent church leader. They both are pastors at Granger Community Church where will be visiting but we will not be attending their workshop. (Later correction: Actually Tony is leaving mid-February to take a position at a church in South Carolina). If you are excited about reading before the semester begins, your assignment will be to read any 100 pages in this book. You will be reflecting about what you learned at the workshop and from reading this book in a three page paper. You will need to write how many pages you read. Tony and Tim both have blogs: http://www.tonymorganlive.com/ and http://www.leadingsmart.com/ and a podcast www.simplystrategicshow.com
But if you are strongly interested in business and not as interested in church ministry, you may read the following work. (Tim and Craig, I am thinking about you here). Instead of reading 100 pages of Stevens/Morgan, I am requiring that you read 150 pages of Collins. I have not ordered the Collins book for the Taylor bookstore. I hope and expect most of you will read the Stevens/Morgan book. Though Good to Great is the most influential business book in many years, it has also been read by many pastors. If you are excited about reading before the semester begins, read any 150 pages in this book. You will write a three page paper reflecting on this book and the Granger workshop. You will need to write how many pages you read. You can also find audio to listen to Collins at http://www.jimcollins.com/
Collins, Jim. Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap... and Others Don't. New York: HarperCollins, 2001. $17.
2. Olson, Ginny, Diane Elliot and Mike Work. Youth Ministry Management Tools. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan/Youth Specialties, 2001. $28.
We will use this book to help design a ministry and build programming skills.
3. Stanley, Andy, Lane Jones, and Reggie Joiner. Seven Practices of Effective Ministry. Sisters, OR: Multnomah, 2004. $15.
We will be challenged by Andy Stanley, one of the most influential pastors in America, and the insights he has gleaned leading one of the fastest growing churches in America today. Andy, Lane and Reggie have a podcast on this book at http://www.practicallyspeaking.org/
4. Kimball, Dan. The Emerging Church. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2003. $13 (Required last year so there are a number of CEM seniors with this book).
This book will serve as an alternative to the megachurch model. Kimball’s book is an excellent introduction to understanding the emerging church movement which is the most important young adult ministry movement in America today. Dan has a blog: http://www.dankimball.com /
But if you are strongly interested in counseling, you may read the following book instead. (Mary, I am thinking about you here). But instead of reading 100 pages of Kimball, I am requiring that you read 200 pages of Scazzero. I have not ordered the Scazzero book for the Taylor bookstore. I hope and expect most of you will read the Kimball book.
Scazzero, Peter with Warren Bird. The Emotionally Healthy Church: A Strategy for Discipleship That Actually Changes Lives. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2003. $13.
But if you are strongly interested in social-justice or ministry to the poor, you may read the following book instead. (Shanna and Carly, I am thinking about you here). But instead of reading 100 pages of Kimball, I am requiring that you read 150 pages of Sider. I have not ordered the Sider book for the Taylor bookstore. I hope and expect most of you will read the Kimball book.
Sider, Ronald J., Philip N. Olson and Heidi Rolland Unruh. Churches That Make a Difference: Reaching Your Community with Good News and Good Works. Grand Rapids: Baker, 2002. $15.
5. Peterson, Eugene H. Working the Angles: The Shape of Pastoral Integrity. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1987. $11 (Required last year so there are a number of CEM seniors with this book).
This book will serve as an alternative to a high emphasis on programming. The Peterson book talks about the importance of prayer, Scripture and spiritual direction in the life of the pastor. Peterson is one of my heroes.
But if you are strongly interested in charismatic prayer ministry and are less interested in church ministry, you may read the following book by Cymbala. You will be required to read all 200 pages of Cymbala as opposed to only 100 pages of Peterson. I have not ordered the Cymbala book for the Taylor bookstore. I hope and expect most of you will read the Peterson book.
Cymbala, Jim. Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1997. $13.
6. Frazee, Randy. The Christian Life Profile Assessment Tool Workbook: Discovering the Quality of Your Relationships with God and Others in 30 Key Areas. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005. $11.
We will use this workbook to learn about how to evaluate spiritual growth – something notoriously difficult to measure.