QuestionQuestion

The reading assignment includes chapters 1-4 of Mary Boys' book, "Educating in Faith: Maps and Visions."
In addition to the reading, thoughtfully complete your own answers to the questions on the chart or map found on pages 9-10 of Boys.

Answer each question first according to your OWN perspective. For next week, answer the same set of questions according to your denomination's or faith tradition's perspective. Then compare and contrast your answers with that of your denomination/tradition, paying close attention to where you agree or disagree. Remember that the purpose of this project is not to check for your total agreement with your tradition; it is an effort at self-awareness and your initial steps towards your own theology/philosophy of educating in faith. Sometimes denominations need reforming, and each generation is called to consider and reconsider the perspectives of the past; educating in faith relies on the integrity of this process.
In your opinion, which are the KEY questions for educating in faith today? Which questions have played the biggest role in your own life or faith development? What did you learn from Boys' sweep of history related to education? What do you notice was missing from her sweep?

Address the following questions/issues:

I. In your opinion, which are the KEY questions for educating in faith today? Which questions have played the biggest role in your own life or faith development?

II. What did you learn from Boys' sweep of history related to education? What do you notice was missing from her sweep?

III. What are your/your faith tradition’s theological foundations for education? What do you see as some of the challenges/dangers/limitations/opportunities   inherent in your own faith tradition’s foundations in ministering in today’s world?

IV. Dialogue with one another, using the following as a starting point for your conversation:
1.It is argued, “Theology is an individual task and a corporate enterprise. Theological reflection best occurs in the context of community. Because it is communal, it is also collaborative and dialogical.” How do you see theological reflection happening in the church – is it being “done” by ordained pastors, key lay people, everyone? How important do you think it is for the church to be doing critical theological inquiry regarding issues facing society? How should this be done? What is the best balance between the “individual task” and the “corporate enterprise”? What should be the role of the pastor?
2.Do you believe that Christian teaching has changed over time, or is “God’s truth” unchanging? Explain your response.
3.Can you identify changes the church has made regarding its teachings (e.g. slavery, women in ministry, divorce, the environment, etc.)? What do you think caused the changes?
4.What are the risks of theological debate versus staying away from the “hot button issues”? What are the costs of engaging in the debate and what are the costs of evasion?
5.Rethinking or challenging our embedded theology can be painful. Might this be because we believe that if we disregard certain beliefs, we are somehow showing disrespect to those who were instrumental in influencing our embedded faith? Why do you think challenging embedded faith is so difficult?
6.Why do you think we’re discussing these questions in a Christian Education class?


The Foundational Questions – Consider according to your own theological position/tradition.
What does it mean to be religious?
REVELATION
How is God revealed?
Scripture only?
Scripture and experience?
Role of Holy Spirit?
CONVERSION
What constitutes conversion? Once for all or ongoing?
How do you know: Emotional response or deep and abiding faith?
Role of psychology?
FAITH & BELIEF
What is faith? How important is it to consent to a creed? What should be the role of doctrines in the church? How does faith differ from belief?
THEOLOGY
What’s its significance in religious education?
FAITH & CULTURE
How does faith situate a person in the world?
What does it mean to educate in faith?
GOAL OF ED
Why educate in faith? What constitutes an educated person?
KNOWLEDGE
What’s it mean to know? What’s the relation between knowing and doing?
SOCIAL SCIENCES
(Psychology, Sociology, Anthropology, Neuropsychology, etc.) How formative a role should they play? Which ones are most influential?
CURRICULUM & TEACHING
What does/should curriculum look like? How is teaching understood?
ED AS A POLITICAL TERM
Toward what view of society is one educating, if any?

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These solutions may offer step-by-step problem-solving explanations or good writing examples that include modern styles of formatting and construction of bibliographies out of text citations and references. Students may use these solutions for personal skill-building and practice. Unethical use is strictly forbidden.

I. In your opinion, which are the KEY questions for educating in faith today? Which questions have played the biggest role in your own life or faith development?
In your opinion, the KEY questions for educating in faith today is Carrying Conversation on Religious Faith, Rituals and Traditions of Religion, Devotional Practices, and Servicing our Faith by helping others to understand the Word of God. The biggest questions that have played the biggest role in my own life or faith development is the “Calling” to carrying on a conversation without knowing a lot about the Word of God. But, being able to learn how to interpret the Word of God to others (Boys, 1981).   
II. What did you learn from Boys' sweep of history related to education? What do you notice was missing from her sweep?
I learned from Boys' sweep of history related to education is that Revivalism provides an important backdrop against which to view the contours of religious education. Boy’s theoretical perception of religious education tends to characterize her own bias and views though traditions of faith by educating mankind about the Word of God. Boy’s interpretation of Burgess, when she compared and contrasted major schools of thought with respect to the fundamental constructs, definitions, and propositions in their respective theories of education.
I noticed what was missing from her sweep is connecting faith practices with those irregular events that pop up in family life. Such irregular events include graduations from school/university, the awarding of drivers licenses, weddings, house moving’s and the onset of puberty. Each of these times give opportunity to name God’s presence and activity in our lives and bring his Word to bear on important happenings in our family lives.

III. What are your/your faith tradition’s theological foundations for education? What do you see as some of the challenges/dangers/limitations/opportunities inherent in your own faith tradition’s foundations in ministering in today’s world?
My faith tradition’s theological foundations for education is being able to express and survey the territory of religious education through devotional practices of having a fulfilling life with God. In his letter to the Colossians, the apostle Paul writes: “Let the word of Christ completely fill your lives, while you use all your wisdom to teach and instruct each other. With thankful hearts, sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs to God” (Col. 3:16). The things I see as being some of the challenges, dangers, limitations, and opportunities inherent in my own faith tradition’s foundations in ministering in today’s world is the devotional practices of serving the people and helping them to understand the Word of God, which some people neglects and questions his or her faith. Devotional practices are repeated activities through which the word of Christ can, as Paul, puts it “completely fill our lives”. They are the spiritual equivalent of daily meals: things we do daily, almost without thinking, that permit God to feed us and sustain us, to keep us spiritually alive and healthy, as cited in Boys (1981).
IV. Dialogue with one another, using the following as a starting point for your conversation:
1. It is argued, “Theology is an individual task and a corporate enterprise. Theological reflection best occurs in the context of community. Because it is communal, it is also collaborative and dialogical.” How do you see theological reflection happening in the church – is it being “done” by ordained pastors, key lay people, everyone? How important do you think it is for the church to be doing critical theological inquiry regarding issues facing society? How should this be done? What is the best balance between the “individual task” and the “corporate enterprise”? What should be the role of the pastor?

I see theological reflection happening in the church – is it being “done” by ordained pastors, key lay people, everyone, through the many parallel processes that are involved in the pursuit of Christian unity, one of the most important is the churches’ reflecting together on what the Church is and what the Church does. If the churches are to draw closer together – towards being able to recognize in one another the apostolic faith and the life of the Church – such a process of common discernment is vital. This has been a sure conviction of the theological work pursued through the Faith and Order movement. The role of a pastor is to be the humble servant to God by spreading his message to his people. A pastor is a servant, disciple, and sheep of God’s herd to spread the Word of our Living God, and prays his name in the sanctuary of his people. The pastor assist in the counseling and healing process of God’s people through the Bible and prayer (Boys, 1981).
I think it is important for the church to be doing critical theological inquiry regarding issues facing society, is by spreading the Word of God in society in baby steps and not force religion on everyone. Emphasis on the Christian’s unity as God’s gift is most welcome and indeed crucial both theologically and contextually. Theologically, it is imperative that we recognize continually that the Church’s life and future do not depend only on human efforts and endeavors, however noble, well-meaning and God-pleasing they may be. God graciously calls us into the Church and into active participation in the Church’s mission, but the Church does not depend ultimately on our response and faithfulness. It depends on God’s faithfulness, presence, power and grace. Especially in our American context, where human effort, initiative and ingenuity are so highly valued, it is important to highlight the uniqueness of the Church as God’s creation and gracious gift in and to the world. However, it is important for churches not to be considered as a corporate business, but to be considered as a House of Worship of God’s Children (Boys, 1981).
2. Do you believe that Christian teaching has changed over time, or is “God’s truth” unchanging? Explain your response.
I believe that Christian teaching has changed over time through man’s interpretation of what God is and God should be. However, God’s message is unchanging through his words in the Holy Bible and the spiritual life.
3. Can you identify changes the church has made regarding its teachings (e.g. slavery, women in ministry, divorce, the environment, etc.)? What do you think caused the changes?
The everyday life of African Americans is characterized by "trouble." One experiences trouble, or trials and tribulations, as a matter of course. African Americans typically characterize the way in which the larger social system presents itself to the individual as "trouble." The problematic everyday life must be interpreted so one can order one's experience, which, in turn, fosters mental wholeness and...

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