Travelin' Man

I have felt God calling me to pursue a Doctor of Ministry degree (D. Min.) for a couple of years. The D. Min. is not to be confused with a Ph. D. degree. While it is doctoral work, it is primarily designed for pastors in ministry settings, not for those who wish to teach at the seminary level. I have been looking here and there on the Internet at the various United Methodist seminaries for a while, just curious about what was being offered. I found some good things, but nothing I was excited about, certainly nothing I was prepared to go back to sitting in a classroom and researching in the library about!

That all changed two weeks ago. Sunday night I said to Christy I really wanted to explore a D. Min. in preaching. I felt it was an area of strength for me, and wanted to develop it further. The next day I began looking on the same websites again. Then I noticed “Preaching in the 21st Century” at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, D.C. It was exactly what I was looking for. I nearly fell out of my chair. I noticed the coursework started in May, too late for me to get in. So I called the seminary to see what the plans were to offer it again. Long story short, God has found a way to squeeze me into the course, even though the seminary stopped taking applications two months ago. Here is the schedule and classes I will be taking:

May 9-12 and 15-19, 2006
Words and The Word: Theology and Rhetoric, Dr. Lucy L. Hogan, and Invigorating the High Holy Days, Dr. Laurence Hull Stookey

January 2-5 and 8-12, 2007
The Public Pulpit, Dr. J. Philip Wogaman, and Biblical Interpretation for Preaching to a New Generation, Dr. Bruce C. Birch and Dr. A. Katherine Grieb

June 18-28, 2007 (Kansas City)
Project Seminar, Dr. Lewis A. Parks and Sermon Series that Engage the Heart and the Mind, Rev. Adam Hamilton

January 7-11 and 14-18, 2008
Harry Emerson Fosdick: A Case Study in the Preacher as Pastoral Care Giver, Dr. Michael S. Koppel and Preaching with Prophetic Imagination, Dr. William B. McClain.

May 13-16 and 19-23, 2008
Preaching and Multi-Media, Dr. Susan Karen Hedahl and Leading through Preaching, Dr. Lovett H. Weems, Jr.

Beginning January 2007 participants in this DMin track will preach in the pulpits of the Washington Area on the Sunday between courses. A wide variety of preaching contexts are available and students will be encouraged to sample different contexts.

I covet your prayers! All of this has happened so quickly—God is leading me into new and challenging places in ministry. I hope you are as excited about this as I am. We are fortunate to belong to a community that supports one another, so I can go and study without feeling guilty. And Pastor Marie has graciously offered to cover any emergencies while I am away in May. Thank you for your support, congregation and staff! Thank you family! Thank you God! -


Anonymous said…
Hi Frank,

Hope all is well! I am very interested in your plans and fully supportive of what God might have in store for you all. I am in the early stages of planning my sabatical for summer 2008 and if possible I might come and join you for a while. It would be particularly good if i could join your May 2008 seminar on Multimedia and preaching.

Anyway friend, take care and may God bless you and yours