According to the Hartford Institute for Religion Research, 80% of Christian churches now utilize hybrid worship. And nearly all congregations do some sort of digitally mediated ministry through websites, social media, and video conferencing. With such a large number of churches doing digital ministry, it is important for pastors and ministry leaders to ask thoughtful questions about these practices. Designed for pastors and lay ministry leaders, this course will take a deep dive over 6 sessions into ministry in the digital world. We'll use Scripture, theology, technology, and ministry practice to help each other navigate the digital realm with a view toward doing effective ministry there and using the tools it offers. But we'll also think through the benefits and limitations of having "everything online," and discuss important aspects of face-to-face, in-person fellowship. Please join us on this journey as we figure things out together, seeking God's guidance, direction and grace for ministry in the digital age.

There will be 6 live sessions via Zoom from 4-5pm (CST) See specifics below:

  1. Tuesday, January 17-Digital world vs. the Analog World (Rev. Trevor Sutton)- In order to make sense of ministry in a digital world, we must first define what we mean by digital world. Is the digital world part of the ‘real’ world? Or is it a virtual space that is radically separate from analog spaces? What happens to us when we engage with digital media? This session will consider what is meant by the digital world and how to navigate the borders between mediated and unmediated ministry. 
  2. Tuesday, January 24-Evangelism & Engagement (Thomas Davila)- Social media can be a difficult space to manage. We encounter followers, trolls, and everything in between. As Christians and ministry leaders, how do we do ministry here, edify others, and reach non-believers without becoming embroiled in controversies and foolish arguments? This session will consider what Christian evangelism and engagement looks like in the digital realm.
  3. Tuesday, January 31-Teaching & Bible Study (Jamie Crustals)- Many Bible studies and small groups have become a hybrid of in-person and online learning. Now that we can teach and study God’s word online, how do we do this well? This session will identify the two primary modes for delivering learning material online, discuss the proper structure of a synchronous learning session to better boost learner engagement, provide guidance on the instructional delivery method of “flipping the classroom,” and share resources that can be used for teaching online.
  4. Tuesday, February 7-Pastoral Care & Relationships (Thomas Davila)- Over the last several years, we have been forced - for better or for worse - to learn how to manage relationships using digital media and online resources. Sometimes, digital technology is our only option for providing pastoral care and maintaining relationships. This session will explore the key considerations for providing care and developing relationships in a digital world.
  5. Rescheduled: Tuesday, February 21-Worship & Proclamation (Rev. Trevor Sutton)- According to the Hartford Institute for Religion Research, 80% of Christian churches now utilize hybrid worship. With such a large percentage of churches utilizing this new form of worship, it is important for pastors and ministry leaders to ask thoughtful questions about online worship practices. This session will explore the theological, technological, and formational questions that should be considered when it comes to online worship practices.
  6. Rescheudled: Tuesday, February 28-Community & Congregation (Rev. Trevor Sutton)- What are the implications for communities and congregations in a digital world? How is Christian life together transformed by digital media? This session will explore how digital tools shape communities and congregations. We will think theologically, pastorally, and practically about the implications of being a congregation that is both in-person and online.

Note: The Tuesday Feburary 14 date needed to be rescheduled. 


1 Continuing Education Unit

Upon completing the requirements of this course, you will receive 1 CEU from Concordia Seminary St. Louis. For this reason, your transcript from CUWAA Continuing Education will not reflect this CEU.


Additional Information

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