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Embedded Certificates

McAfee's Master of Divinity students have the opportunity to earn one of five specialized certificates embedded within their MDiv degree program.  Certificates provide for students further specialization within their field, opportunities for professional development, and increased depth in both theory and practice.  Certificates are offered exclusively to MDiv students and awarded upon the completion of their degree.

Eligibility

This Certificate is open to all McAfee School of Theology Master of Divinity students as part of the degree program. Students must complete all requirements of both the Certificate in Christian Ethics program and the M.Div. degree in order to receive the Certificate in Christian Ethics. Students in the Graduate Certificate in Theological Studies and other Non-Degree Students, as well as MACM and MTS students are not eligible to participate in this certificate program.

Description

The Certificate in Christian Ethics is designed for students who recognize the centrality of moral character, moral discernment, and moral witness in Christian discipleship, ministry, and church life, and who are pursuing vocations that will specialize in such efforts.

Required Courses

Students will complete 9 hours of Advisor approved courses of advanced electives (beyond the 59 core hours of the M.Div.) from the following courses:

  • THET 600 History of Christian Ethics
  • THET 602 Christian Ethics and War
  • THET 603 Faith and Politics
  • THET 605 Ethics, Law, & Public Policy
  • THET 606 African American Traditions in Theological Ethics
  • THET 607 Theology & Praxis of Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • THET 608 The Ethics of Reconciliation
  • THET 611 The Sermon on the Mount
  • THET 634 The Book of the Twelve     
  • THET 652 Forgiveness and Reconciliation
  • THET 700 Bioethics   
  • THET 701 Roman Catholic Ethics     
  • THET 702 Social Justice & the Old Testament
  • THET 706 Ethics of Human Dignity 
  • THET 707 Christian Sexual Ethics          
  • THET 708 Theology After the Holocaust
  • THET 709 Dietrich Bonhoeffer  
  • THET 710 Theology and Economics     
  • THET 711 The Teachings of Jesus 
  • THET 800 Special Topics
  • Other courses as approved by advisor

Professional Formation

Students will complete one experience in each of the following areas of professional formation:

  • Present a paper at an academic conference; speak in chapel at Mercer; offer teaching or preaching in a church on an ethical theme; or participate in published research related to ethics with a McAfee professor; or publish an article or blog on an ethical theme
  • Participate in an academic conference such as the Society of Christian Ethics or American Academy of Religion (AAR) or serve an event sponsored by the Center for Theology and Public Life
  • Participate in a Mercer on Mission or McAfee Mission Immersion experience; participate in a course with a service-learning component; or engage in Christian moral witness (Advocacy) on a public policy issue, such as immigration reform or the death penalty, at the local, state, or national level

Eligibility

This Certificate is open to all McAfee School of Theology Master of Divinity students as part of the degree program. Students must complete all requirements of both the Certificate in Community Transformation program and the M.Div. degree in order to receive the Certificate in Community Transformation. Students in the Graduate Certificate in Theological Studies and other Non-Degree Students, as well as MACM and MTS students are not eligible to participate in this certificate program.

Description
The Certificate in Community Transformation is designed for students who recognize the need to address structural injustice and policy change from a creative and entrepreneurial faith-based perspective.  Course work and partnerships with churches and community organizations, students will engage in professional formation activities that include organizing, asset mapping, grant writing, and advocacy.

Required Courses

Students will complete 9 hours of advanced electives (beyond the 59 core hours of the M.Div.) from the following courses:

  • All students will complete THPT 504 Introduction to Community Development 
  • In addition, students will complete 6 hours of advisor approved courses from the following courses:
  • THPT 600 Cultural Intelligence
  • THPT 601 Peace, Justice, & Reconciliation
  • THPT 608 Mission Methodology & Practice
  • THPT 609 Poverty, Wealth & Inequalities
  • THPT 610 Field Research in Congregations & Communities
  • THPT 800 Special Topics
  • Other courses as approved by advisor

Professional Formation

Students will complete one experience in each of the following areas of professional formation:

  • Grant Writing Workshop
  • a community-based collaborative research project in a local church and/or community using asset-mapping
  • At least one semester of Contextual Education in a church or community organization setting where the student can engage in advocacy and community organizing

Eligibility

This Certificate is open to all McAfee School of Theology Master of Divinity students as part of the degree program. Students must complete all requirements of both the Certificate in Congregational Ministry program and the M.Div. degree in order to receive the Certificate in Congregational Ministry. Students in the Graduate Certificate in Theological Studies and other Non-Degree Students, as well as MACM and MTS students are not eligible to participate in this certificate program.

Description
The Certificate in Congregational Ministry is designed for students with a vocational calling to church ministry. Students will engage in courses and professional formation that will augment their knowledge and skills for leadership, preaching, pastoral care, and faith formation in diverse congregational settings.

Required Courses

Students will complete 9 hours of Advisor approved courses of advanced electives (beyond the 59 core hours of the M.Div.) from the following courses:

  • a 3-hour church polity course. Baptist students will take THCH 510 Baptist Heritage; students of other denominations may take Baptist Heritage or a polity course from another institution
  • 6 hours of practical theology courses, beyond the two courses required in the M.Div. curriculum, that will strengthen their ministry focus, i.e. preaching, youth ministry, Christian education, church administration/leadership, etc. Students will choose from the following courses:
  • THPT 501 Leadership for Church & Community
  • THPT 503 Spiritual Care through Crisis Ministry
  • THPT 505 Faith Development through the Lifespan               
  • THPT 506 Preaching
  • THPT 507 Worship through the Christian Year 
  • THPT 620 Ministry with Children    
  • THPT 622 Ministry with Adults 
  • THPT 623 Church Pedagogy & Curriculum Development
  • THPT 624 Theological Approaches to Christian Education
  • THPT 625 Women: Believing, Worshiping, & Ministering
  • THPT 646 Counseling Couples in the Congregation
  • THPT 670 The Practice of Preaching  
  • THPT 671 Preaching & Film             
  • THPT 680 Change & Conflict   
  • THPT 680 Change & Conflict   
  • THPT 691 Worship in the African American Church       
  • THPT 800 Special Topics          
  • Other courses as approved by Advisor  

Professional Formation

 Students will complete one experience in each of the following areas of professional formation:

  • Serve as an officiant at a funeral, wedding, baby dedication, communion or baptism; serve on a committee to plan worship for chapel at McAfee; serve as a staff member at Passport Camp; serve as a director of a mission trip, Vacation Bible school, or retreat; or other ideas as approved by Advisor
  • Present a paper at a professional conference (AAR/SBL, NABPR, CEA, etc.); preach a sermon in chapel at McAfee or at the Festival of Preachers; or other ideas as approved by Advisor
  • Write and publish curriculum for Sunday School, Vacation Bible School, or retreat; write a series of devotions for Smyth & Helwys Publishers; other ideas as approved by Advisor

Eligibility

This Certificate is open to all McAfee School of Theology Master of Divinity students as part of the degree program. Students must complete all requirements of both the Certificate in Interfaith Dialogue program and the M.Div. degree in order to receive the Certificate in Interfaith Dialogue. Students in the Graduate Certificate in Theological Studies and other Non-Degree Students, as well as MACM and MTS students are not eligible to participate in this certificate program.

Description
The Certificate in Interfaith Dialogue is designed for students who recognize that global peace and reconciliation is possible only when adherents of the world’s religions recognize their mutual dependence upon each other, learn to understand each other, and determine to work together to meet global challenges. The Certificate program helps students to frame an adequate theology of religions from within the Christian tradition that can serve as a foundation for dialogue and collaboration with persons of other faiths.

Required Courses

Students will complete 9 hours of Advisor approved courses of advanced electives (beyond the 59 core hours of the M.Div.) from the following courses:

  • THPT 600 Cultural Intelligence
  • THPT 602 Judaism: History, Thought and Practice
  • THPT 603 Islam: History, Thought and Practice
  • THPT 604 Whatever Happened to Abram’s Children? Judaism, Christianity and Islam Today
  • THPT 605 Why Did the Buddha Cross the Road? Asian Worldviews, Religions and Philosophies
  • THPT 606 A Brother By Any Other Name? Cultural Lenses and the Faces of Jesus
  • THPT 607 Who Moved the Equator? The Global Church in a Multicultural World
  • THPT 614 Why Can’t We All Just Get Along? Interreligious Dialogue and Christian Faith
  • THPT 610 Field Research in Congregations and Communities
  • THCH 713 Interweaving Faiths: Christian & Muslim Histories
  • THTP 709 Theology and Ethnography
  • Other courses as approved by Advisor

Professional Formation 

Students will complete one experience in each of the following areas of professional formation:   

  • Serve in a multi-cultural context through internships and/or other forms of placement, participate in a Mercer on Mission or McAfee Mission Immersion experience, or participate in one of the courses above with a service-learning component
  • Present a paper at an academic conference, speak in chapel at Mercer or McAfee, preach and/or teach in a local congregation on a theme related to interfaith dialogue and collaboration, or research, write, and/or publish in the area of interfaith dialogue
  • Advocate together with persons of other religious faiths for justice issues in local and national communities or on behalf of persons of other faith traditions

Eligibility

This Certificate is open to all McAfee School of Theology Master of Divinity students as part of the degree program. Students must complete all requirements of both the Certificate in Spiritual Care program and the M.Div. degree in order to receive the Certificate in Spiritual Care. Students in the Graduate Certificate in Theological Studies and other Non-Degree Students, as well as MACM and MTS students are not eligible to participate in this certificate program.

 

Description

The Certificate in Spiritual Care is designed for students who are called to ministries of emotional support and spiritual guidance in a variety of settings, including congregations, public and private institutions, and community ministries. The Certificate offers two areas of focus. The chaplaincy/pastoral care focus prepares students for vocations as chaplains in institutional settings (e.g., hospitals, prisons, military, universities) or as ministers of pastoral care in congregational settings. The spiritual formation focus prepares students for careers as spiritual directors in congregational or other settings.

 

The Certificate requires nine credit hours of advanced elective coursework in pastoral theology and spirituality, a contextual ministry placement in the practice of pastoral care or spiritual formation, and a final written self-reflective paper or project. Its coursework and training activities emphasize self-reflective learning that integrates theological knowledge, practical skills, and awareness of one’s personal identity, relational abilities, cultural awareness, and spiritual commitments.

 

Required Courses

Students will complete 9 hours of Advisor approved courses of advanced electives (beyond the 59 core hours of the M.Div.) from the following courses:

Spiritual Formation Focus

  • THCH/SP 701 Classics of Christian Devotion
  • THCH/SP 703 Celtic Christianity
  • THCH/SP 712 Contemplation in a World of Action: The Life and Writings of Thomas Merton
  • THSP 601 Spiritual Disciplines for Christian Spiritual Formation
  • THSP 602 Christian Pilgrimage
  • THSP 604 Christian Formation for Racial Reconciliation, pt. I
  • THSP 605 Christian Formation for Racial Reconciliation, pt. II
  • THSP 642 Spiritual Care with Addicted Persons
  • THSP 643 Spiritual Care through the Interpretation of Dreams
  • THSP 649 Coaching for Spiritual Growth
  • THSP 650 Spiritual Direction in Ministry
  • THSP 706 Creation Theology, Spirituality, and the Arts
  • THSP 800 Special Topics
  • Other courses as approved by advisor

Chaplaincy/Pastoral Care Focus

  • THPT 503 Spiritual Care through Crisis Ministry
  • THPT 642 Spiritual Care with Addicted Persons
  • THPT 643 Spiritual Care through the Interpretation of Dreams
  • THPT 644 Toward a Theory & Practice of Love
  • THPT 645 Spiritual Care with African American Families
  • THPT 646 Counseling Couples in the Congregation
  • THPT 647 Trauma Stewardship
  • THPT 648 Pastoral Care with Women
  • THPT 649 Coaching for Spiritual Growth
  • THPT 650 Spiritual Direction
  • THPT 651 Forgiveness and Reconciliation
  • THPT 652 Gender and Sexuality
  • THPT 704 Clinical Pastoral Education Unit 2
  • THPT 800 Special Topics
  • Other courses as approved by Advisor

 

Professional Formation

Students will complete one experience in each of the following areas of professional formation:

  • Contextual Ministry Placement: Students in the chaplaincy/pastoral care focus will complete a unit of clinical pastoral education (CPE) at an ACPE-accredited training center. Students in the spiritual direction specialization may complete: (1) a unit of CPE; (2) at least one semester of contextual education in a church or community organization setting where providing spiritual formation to individuals or groups is a significant component of their responsibilities; or (3) one semester of supervised teaching ministry (THPT 626) with a focus on spiritual formation
  • Personal Spiritual Direction or Counseling: Since competent and ethical practice of spiritual care necessitates self-reflection, personal growth, and attending to one’s own physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being, students in the Certificate in Spiritual Care are expected to participate in activities geared toward their ongoing formation, growth, and well-being. This can include participating in days of reflection, spiritual retreats, counseling, or spiritual direction, as well as personal practices of self-care and students should complete at least 6 hours of activity per academic year
  • Final Reflection Paper: In the final year of their program, students will complete a four-to-six page paper documenting their understanding of their professional identity and how it influences their conduct as a spiritual care provider

Note: Completion of the Certificate in Spiritual Care does not in itself qualify graduates to become board-certified chaplains or certified spiritual directors. However, the coursework and training experiences will help graduates acquire the foundational knowledge and skills to support their applications for certification.

 

Rubric for Final Reflection Paper[i]

Certificate in Spiritual Care

Criterion

Score

 

1: Needs

Improvement

2: Meets

Criterion

3: Exceeds

Criterion

Demonstrates awareness of one’s strengths and how they contribute to one’s provision of spiritual care. Articulates their self-perceived limitations and how they adapt, manage, or work through them.

 

 

 

Articulates ways in which one’s feelings, attitudes, values, and assumptions affect one’s professional practice.

 

 

 

Describes how one attends to their own physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being, and how personal practices of self-care impact their ability to care for others more competently.

 

 

 

Discusses their understanding of boundaries as it informs their spiritual care. Provides a concrete example of how they practice humility and respect within the boundaries of the physical, emotional, cultural, and spiritual needs of the diverse populations they serve.

 

 

 

Describes the role of advocacy in providing spiritual care and how/when they incorporate advocacy in their spiritual practice.

 

 

 

Describes how they ensure that their provision of spiritual care abides by the Code of Ethics for Spiritual Care Professionals.

 

 

 

 


[i] Adapted from Board of Chaplaincy Certification, Inc., Competencies Writing Guide, Section II: Professional Identity and Conduct Competencies.