Foundations for a Practical Theology of Ministry

Foundations for a Practical Theology of Ministry


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The pastoral ministry is in danger of losing its focus, say the authors of this perceptive and timely study.  Specialization in preaching, counseling, evangelism, administration, and education has diffused the impact of practical theology.  And because of competing ideas as to what now is central, the very image of ministry may be breaking down. Foundations for a Practical Theology of Ministry responds to the problem by introducing a specific method for doing practical theology which will be welcomed by concerned church leaders everywhere.

Presenting a realistic, workable answer to those who call for a revival of this vital discipline, Drs. James N. Poling and Donald E. Miller propose that the unifying image for ministry becomes the formation of the community of faith.  After developing this as the most appropriate base for the practice of theology, they carefully outline their method and show how it will work by demonstrating its success in the actual experiences of typical congregations.

For Christian leaders who seek to renew the integrity of ministry and restore the character of pastoral leadership, this significant book will provide a solid foundation.  And for individuals interested or involved in education for the future of the church, this important resource will prove invaluable.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780687133406
Publisher: Abingdon Press
Publication date: 07/28/2001
Pages: 188
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.43(d)

About the Author

(2001) James Poling is professor of pastoral theology, care and counseling at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, Evanston, Illinois. He has also taught at Colgate Rochester Divinity School, New York, and Bethany Theological Seminary, Oak Brook, Illinois. He is an ordained minister of the Presbyterian Church (USA).

Table of Contents

1Introduction: The Faith Community and Theological Interpretation9
2Types of Practical Theology29
3A Method for Practical Theology62
4Guidelines for the Practice of Ministry100
5Community Formation as the Task of Ministry126
6The Challenge to Ministry Education147
Notes and References171

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