SFAD (Spiritual Formation and Discipleship)

SFAD (Spiritual Formation and Discipleship)

SFAD 510 Knowing Self, Knowing God
1 hour. Provides an opportunity for students to develop their own self-awareness in the context of their Christian faith and preparation for ministry. Through lecture, reflection, and intentional community, the course equips students to be critically and positively reflective on their giftedness, calling, personal spiritual histories, and the strengths, weaknesses, and spirituality of their personality types.

SFAD 520 Prayer
1 hour. Provides an opportunity for students to develop, in community, deeper and more satisfying prayer lives. As the essential relational discipline of the Christian journey, prayer is examined in its various forms as modeled by Jesus and the church. The student will experience liturgical, intercessory, conversational, confessional, centering, and meditation prayers. The paradoxes and problems of prayer also are explored.

SFAD 521 Prayer and Inner Healing
1 hour. This introductory course will look at the Christian tradition of healing prayer beginning with Jesus and the apostles and then primarily focus on current models and practices being used in clinical, pastoral, spiritual direction, and lay-counseling settings.

SFAD 530 Spiritual Life
1 hour. Introduces students to classical exercises of the spiritual life. Certain disciplines - community, study of the Scriptures, confession, integrity, purity, simplicity, social justice, and compassion - are explored in order to bring the student into a deeper relationship with God. The process involves lecture, training, community, and personal practice and reflection.

SFAD 533 Personal Study in Spiritual Formation
3 hours. An individually tailored course of research involving in-depth study, praxis, and reflection on a particular question, problem, or issue in the field of spiritual formation. The question, problem, or issue is presented by the student. The student makes application for the study prior to registration for the semester in which the study will be carried out. The application must be approved by the faculty member overseeing the study and the MA program director. The study must follow the spiritual formation personal study guidelines available from the faculty member responsible for the course.

SFAD 534 Spirituality and Social Justice
1 hour. Spirituality is often perceived as otherworldly, with a focus on the interior life and individual piety. But many spiritual traditions, such as the Wesleyan, with its biblical and theological foundation for uniting holiness and justice, provide an established model for relating prayer and social action. This course will explore the Wesleyan model and other Christian traditions, both ancient and modern, that provide spiritual resources for social action rooted in prayer and contemplation. Service to others is both a means and an end of spiritual formation.

SFAD 536 Spirituality, Shame, and Grace
1 hour. Based on an understanding of persons as created in God's image yet broken, this class explores how shame manifests itself in one's life. Emphasis is given to how the Christian faith unknowingly reflects a shame-based identity and perpetuates shame in the life of the believer. By exploring God's response of grace, the believer finds healing, breaking the distorted image of God created by shame-based faith systems.

SFAD 537 Spirituality and Suffering
1 hour. This course examines the issue of suffering in the world and in the life of the Christian. The formation of spirituality through suffering is a principal concern. The nature of Christ's sufferings and their relationship to the Christian life will be examined with a view toward understanding redemption and spiritual development.

SFAD 540 Images of God
1 hour. Designed to give the student opportunities to explore images of God as portrayed through Old and New Testament stories, prayers, and poetry, through Christ's words and deeds, and through the work of Jesus' first disciples. These images are compared to the student's internal images of God, which shape one's thoughts, emotions, and actions. The course guides the student toward allowing God to transform, build, and strengthen these images.

SFAD 541 Spirituality and the Heavens
1 hour. An exploration of the relationship between the meaning, process, and experience of creation and our existence as spiritual beings. Of particular interest will be the conditions in which God's creative work is most likely to occur. Astronomy is the primary discipline for our exploration.

SFAD 542 Spiritual Formation in Marriage
1 hour. Offered in a seminar format every other summer, this course explores the spiritual dynamics of a couple in the intimate marital relationship. Attention is given to how couples can cultivate a meaningful shared spiritual life. Though the student registers for the course, both the student and the student's spouse attend the retreat.

SFAD 544 Spiritual Formation for Women
1 hour. Examines the issues and challenges of spirituality that are unique to women from a biblical, historical, and sociological perspective. Spiritual formation involves the body, mind, and emotions, so gender plays a significant role. This course studies issues such as intimacy, dependency, anger and fear, power, abuse and victim patterns, impact of physiological changes on the woman's spirituality, women's leadership styles, and the changing roles of women and men in culture and the church.

SFAD 546 Spirituality and the Earth
1 hour. Offered in a retreat format every other summer, this course explores the relationship of the student's spiritual life to the spiritual discipline of stewardship. Attention will be given to stewardship of self and of resources, but a particular focus will be made on the stewardship of creation. The seminar (in an outdoor setting) involves lecture, discussion, silent and written reflection, and small group interaction. Additional course fee required.

SFAD 547 Spiritual Formation Through Journaling
1 hour. Designed to guide students in their personal spiritual formation through journaling, and to equip them for assisting in the formation of others through this discipline. Journaling methods used to accomplish this purpose include dialogue, meditation, and imagination.

SFAD 548 Spirituality and Personality
1 hour. Designed to provide a means for in-depth spiritual formation through greater self-awareness using the Enneagram personality profile tool. The Enneagram will help students delve into basic attitudes of their personal and spiritual lives and explore directions for individual and communal growth.

SFAD 549 Spiritual Formation for Men
1 hour. Examines the issues and challenges of spirituality that are unique to men. Spiritual formation is holistic, so gender plays a significant role in one's spiritual development. This course studies issues such as intimacy, power, aggression, lust, anger, and the changing roles of women and men in society and the church.

SFAD 550 Spirituality and Children
1 hour. Based on Jesus' high estimation of children, this course explores the role of children as our teachers. The course gives attention to the notion of our own child-selves and to our own childhood. Specific areas of inquiry are biblical references to children, the spirituality of children, historical and contemporary adult-child relationships, and the social destruction of childhood spirituality. This course intends that renewed observation of "soulfulness" in children will enrich the spirituality of class members.

SFAD 554 Indigenous Spirituality (North American)
1 hour. This course is an examination of Indigenous American spirituality from a Christian perspective and its relationship to Americans from every culture. Students will be exposed to the spirituality of America’s First Nations through readings, shared experiences and various media. The values associated with the Indigenous American harmony concept will be explored along with an understanding of Indigenous American theologies of the land.

SFAD 556 Spirituality and the Writings of the Mystics
1 hour. An exploration of the mystical tradition of spiritual development. Students will read and reflect on representative selections from both male and female Christian mystics, looking at the theology, images of God, and practices that have shaped the contemplative tradition of Christian spirituality. Included in the course is a small-group practicum to assimilate contemplative practices into the student's devotional life.

SFAD 561 Spiritual Direction Experience I
.5 hours. A two-semester course designed to give MDiv, MASF, and SFAD certificate students an intentional one-on-one exploration of their spiritual life with a trained guide. Since a dynamic relationship with God requires attentiveness to one's interiority and to one's lived experience of faith in community with others, the spiritual-direction model is used. Course is closed to other degree students. Additional course fee required for certificate students.

SFAD 562 Spiritual Direction Experience II
.5 hours. A two-semester course designed to give MDiv, MASF, and SFAD certificate students an intentional one-on-one exploration of their spiritual life with a trained guide. Since a dynamic relationship with God requires attentiveness to one's interiority and to one's lived experience of faith in community with others, the spiritual-direction model is used. Course is closed to other degree students. Additional course fee required for certificate students.

SFAD 571 The Art of Spiritual Direction
2 hours. Spiritual direction as a discipline for intentionally guiding persons in their spiritual growth is the focus of this course. Topics of the course include the heritage of spiritual direction; the theological, biblical, and psychological premises for the practice of spiritual direction; the difference between spiritual direction, discipleship, and counseling; the art of discernment; and the nature and practice of spiritual direction. Course participation is limited to students in the SFAD certificate program, the MASF degree program, and the Spiritual Formation Concentration of the MDIV.
Prerequisites: SFAD 510 Knowing Self, Knowing God, SFAD 520 Prayer, SFAD 530 Spiritual Life, SFAD 548 Spirituality and Personality, SFAD 561 Spiritual Direction Experience I, SFAD 562 Spiritual Direction Experience II, and CHTH 562 History of Spirituality and Renewal.

SFAD 572 Spiritual Direction Practicum
2 hours. The sequence course for SFAD 071/571, Spiritual Direction Practicum gives students an experience in being spiritual directors under the supervision of a trained director. Further course topics include professionalism issues such as confidentiality, the directee-director relationship, the emotional health of the directee, and the beginning and ending of a spiritual direction relationship. Course participation is limited to students in the SFAD certificate program, the MASF degree program, and the Spiritual Formation Concentration of the MDIV.
Prerequisite: SFAD 571 The Art of Spiritual Direction.

SFAD 580 Group Spiritual Formation
1 hour. Enables students to gain experience in, and learn how to create, small groups that intentionally seek to form participants spiritually. The course focuses on building a spiritual-formation curriculum, utilizing small-group dynamics, and experiencing mutual accountability, with the intention of providing a resource vital to future ministry. Students will have a small-group-practicum experience with supervision.

SFAD 585 Seminar in Spiritual Formation and Discipleship
1 hour. A seminar represents the involvement of a group of students with a professor studying a specially selected topic. Students are encouraged to submit suggestions for seminar topics to the departmental chair. Such requests, as well as faculty interests and special opportunities, will be considered in arrangements for a seminar.

SFAD 591 Spiritual Leadership
1 hour. An examination of the unique nature and responsibility of spiritual leadership. The theology of spiritual leadership is analyzed in today's culture. Elements such as accountability, appropriate boundaries, devotional habits, life balance, and retreats and solitude and emotional, spiritual, and physical health are reviewed. Elements that inhibit the exercise of spiritual leadership are explored, such as burnout, depression, addictions, lack of self-differentiation, intimacy issues, sexual misconduct, fears, lack of discipline, conflict, and the misuse of power and innocence.

SFAD 595 Special Study in Spiritual Formation and Discipleship
1 hour. A specially designed and individually tailored course of research involving in-depth study of a particular question, problem, or issue presented by the student. The student must make application for the study prior to registration for the semester in which the study will be carried out. The application must be approved by the faculty member overseeing the study and the departmental chair.

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