GTF Summer Institute

GTF Summer Institute 2014 at Oxford

GTF Institute Theme: “Liturgy, Spirituality, and the Practice of Ministry”
Dates: August 10-15, 2014
DESCRIPTION:  With clergy burn out at an all-time high and with professional clergy choosing to leave the ministry at a rate of 1,700 per month according to a recent U.S. study, this seminar will focus upon issues related to the “practice of ministry as a profession” and will do so within the context of a secular world questioning the meaning and purpose of professional ministry itself. In a carefully constructed analysis of what makes ministry a profession, we will explore the range of definitions and their practices within the broader framework of the Church in the world.A structural and functional analysis of the profession of ministry “after the call” will constitute the primary focus of this seminar and such components of this profession such as status, education, training, regulations and protocol, privilege, power and stability will be carefully analyzed. It must be emphasized that we are focusing upon the concept and practice of ministry “after the call,” thereby avoiding theological controversy in difference to the social and professional character of ministry. Whereas each tradition varies as to the nature and function of its understanding of the call to ministry which clergy are expected to have experienced, but when they have responded to that call in whatever form it has occurred, the profession and practice of ministry is structurally and functionally the same when defined as a profession. This will be our focus. 
TUTOR: Dr. John H. Morgan
                  Karl Mannheim Professor of the History and Philosophy of the Social Sciences
SESSION TOPICS for the Morning Seminar:
  • Defining Ministry as a Profession: What Happens “After the Call”  
  • The Nature of Status: Central Ingredients of Education and Training 
  • The Nature of Control: The Role of Regulation and Protocol 
  • Professional Stratification: Securing Class and Privilege 
  • Wielding Power and Influence: Professional Stability and Innovation                    
Written Requirements:
For each session, the student is to prepare a 500-1,000 word response to the assigned readings for that session.  The responses may be to the content of the chapter itself or in response to the questions posed at the end of each chapter. The choice is left to the discretion of the study. At the end of the Institute, the student will have written between 2,500 and 5,000 words. The final paper is to be a compilation of these five short papers including refinements resulting from the tutorial experience itself. The final paper must be between 4,500 and 6,000 words and submitted electronically as an email or a Word document by October 15, 2014.*
After the Call: A Structural and Functional Analysis of the Ministry Profession by John H. Morgan.  This book is available through the GTF for $32.99.
Recommended texts for background reading for those interested:
Avery Dulles, SJ, The Priestly Office: A Theological Reflection
Ed. Farley, The Fragility of Knowledge: Theological Education in the Church and University
W. Clark Gilpin, A Preface to Theology
John H. Morgan, Scholar, Priest, and Pastor: Ministry Priorities Among the Clergy Today (A Study of Stress and Satisfaction in the Workplace)
John H. Morgan, Clinical Pastoral Psychotherapy: A Practitioner’s Handbook for Ministry Professionals (2nd Edition) 
 Let me take this opportunity to explain how the writing of papers and oral presentations work. Some students write the 5 short papers prior to arrival while others write each day prior to the time the paper is due for presentation. Either way is fine but the student must have a prepared paper of 500 words or so for oral presentation to the seminar. Do not write the “final” big paper because you will wish to incorporate information gleaned from the discussions during the week. However, the final paper may include the 5 short papers written for each of the presentations. The short paper presented at each morning session may either be in response to the assigned chapter read for the day or may address specifically the questions at the end of each chapter.
Please remember that you will orally present each of your papers for seminar discussion, feedback, etc., as will every participant. The presentation is made informally, sitting, and reading from your laptop or written paper. There is no getting it wrong or right in terms of your presentation or content. The intent is for you to present a personal response to the readings for the day from your own professional perspective, indicating the relevance (or lack thereof) of each topic being discussed during that particular session of the seminar.
Everyone will bring something different to the table for discussion – no one will have it right or wrong, just different, based upon his/her personal background, experience, professional engagement, faith commitments, etc. The mix is where the learning occurs. The most important thing to remember is “be yourself,” and bring “who you are and what you have to say” to the seminar and all will be well. In a word, “relax” and enjoy the week. 
DESCRIPTION: The afternoon seminar will explore the origins of Christian liturgy and spirituality and will focus upon five major themes. 
TUTOR:  Canon Robin Gibbons, Fellow and Alexander Schmemann Professor of Eastern Christianity
TUTOR:  Canon Angela Tilby, Diocesan Canon at Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford 
MONDAY: The Martyr Spirit
Christian distinctiveness in the ancient world; imitating Jesus by martyrdom and the relationship with baptism, Jewish martyrology and its influence on the early Christians.
LITURGY: Early Christian Initiation
SPIRITUALITY: The Passion of Perpetua
TUESDAY: Against the Mysteries
Christianity as a philosophy rather than a religion. The ambivalent attitude to Plato and the influence of Platonism on emerging spirituality.
LITURGY: Early sources of the liturgy
SPIRITUALITY: Plato and the Spiritual Path
WEDNESDAY: Refounding the World
The corporate dimension of worship and prayer
LITURGY: Eucharist and Church
SPIRITUALITY: Stoicism: The Body and the World
THURSDAY: The Quest for Purity of Heart
The revolt against conformity
LITURGY: Consecrating the Day: Cathedral and Monastic Office
SPIRITUALITY: Entering the Desert
FRIDAY: The Christian Self
The differebnce between Eastern and Western emphases; Augustine and Evagrius
LITURGY: Immanence and Transcendence: The Liturgy as sign and symbol of the Kingdom
SPIRITUALITY: Apatheia and Purity of Heart 
Suggested reading list for afternoon session: (available through Amazon)
  • Williams, Rowan The Wound of Knowledge, DLT, 1979, Chapters 1-3     
  • Hadot, Pierre What is Ancient Philosophy?      
  • Ward, Benedicta The Desert Fathers
  • White, James F. Introduction to Christian Worship
  • White, James F. A Brief History of Christian Worship
  • Gibbons, Robin House of God: House of the People of God 
Please note: To meet all requirements for the afternoon course, a final paper of between 4,500 and 6,000 words must be written and submitted electronically as an email or a Word document by October 15, 2014.
Credits: This Institute (morning and afternoon) serves either as a Non-Project Option for professional degree students or will count as two Units of Study for any degree program with the Graduate Theological Foundation, whether professional or academic.