This MA is designed for lay and ordained Christians with significant experience of working (paid or volunteer) in churches, mission agencies, or not-for-profit organisations (faith-based or secular), enabling you to engage theologically and strategically with the contemporary world.
The course will provide you with the opportunity to integrate biblical, theological, and empirical studies in the context of Christian spirituality. The aim is to engage faithfully and practically with existing and emerging challenges to Christian ministry and mission in the twenty-first century.
Students on this course become highly learned and educated professionals capable of providing intellectual leadership in, and adapting to the needs of, contemporary churches. You will have the opportunity to develop an understanding of the contribution that theological, and biblical studies can make to the effective provision of Christian ministry in the community, and be equipped with the knowledge and critical skills to bring advanced academic expertise to professional work in church and ministerial practice.
The course will provide you with an integrated framework for theology and biblical studies in the context of Christian ministry and mission, which you can use to transform your ministerial practice. You will also develop the critical faculties of analytic and research skills, to enable you to create and interpret new knowledge in theological and ministerial studies, and extend the reach of the discipline in society.
Our networks with other local universities and places of learning will give you regular access to a range of extra-curricular seminars and other educational events relevant to the study of Christian ministry. The University’s proximity to the centre of London with its rich religious history, its diverse religious communities, and its many museums, art galleries, libraries and places of worship, makes it an ideal venue for those who are interested in exploring the histories, interactions and influences of religious communities in contemporary culture as part of their studies.
You will first of all reflect theologically and strategically on the character, nature, purpose, and practice of Christian ministry in church and society. You will be equipped to research the practices of ministry and mission, through study of key Missiological texts.
You will study ministry across a range of denominations and traditions including Pentecostal, Charismatic, Methodist, Anglican, Baptist and Catholic. You will explore and evaluate the language, secular/sacred ideas, rituals and cultural norms that nourish spiritualities, ministerial formation, and ministry practice within different historical and cultural contexts. In particular, you will examine how forms of Christian worship, such as prayer, scriptural readings and sacraments, influence conduct, moral behaviour and patterns of life, in order to develop your ministerial abilities within different political, social and economic environments.
You will also be able to take modules which look at the theological ideas from both classical and modern periods, which are of greatest relevance to church ministry and mission in the contemporary world. Using this theoretical grounding, you can pursue your interest in practical areas of ministry such as marriage and family life, or community work. In these complex and demanding areas, the Christian minister and theologian are faced with new challenges. These modules will give students the historical and academic understanding to be able to offer fresh Christian perspectives, and encourage you to develop your own responses.
There will also be the opportunity for you to reflect deeply on a particular aspect of ministerial practice through the dissertation module.
Students of this course include ordained ministers wanting to pursue continuing ministerial education (CME), and lay Christians seeking careers as practitioners in faith-based or secular organisations. Students may go on to pursue further academic study.
Primarily aimed at those who are employed or volunteer as chaplains, this part-time, work-based course will provide you with groundings in both the theological and pastoral aspects of the role and give you part qualification towards being recognised as a youth and community worker. Our primary partners are Birmingham Archdiocese Diocesan Educational Services (DES) and the Diocesan Youth Service, who run a network of chaplains in schools. Newman continues to make additional links with other networks including Muslim chaplains, prison chaplains, university chaplains, and chaplains in homeless and housing organisations.
The programme can be taken as either a graduate certificate or a postgraduate certificate and consists of three modules. You will undertake a core module on Chaplaincy where you will explore and understand pastoral care in institutional settings, ensuring that you are able to base your practice as a chaplain on a secure grasp of faith tradition, texts (e.g. introduction to biblical texts), acts of worship and pastoral care within the context of working in schools. The module will also help you develop an understanding of what contributes towards spiritual and human development from a faith perspective.
In addition, you will also undertake a fieldwork module which is an essential element of our integrated model and meets professional standards. Your organisation will have substantial involvement in this module as supervisors (and therefore assessors) with the emphasis being on experiential learning in the field, with initial taught input by Newman staff. This will be run via a tutorial group in your localities.