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Traditional and Block Courses

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Anointing Learning
Traditional classes meet twice weekly for one hour and fifteen minutes per session.
Block classes meet once a week for two hours and fifty minutes.

Spring 2015*

American Religious History, HS 103, Steve Angell

This introductory course studies the roles of major churches in the development of American culture and society, their roots both in this continent and others, and links to the frontier, the Civil War, industrialism, and urbanization; also an examination of persons and books from such movements as the Awakenings, Revival Movement, liberalism, fundamentalism, the Social Gospel, and current standpoints. 3 semester hours.

Introduction to the Old Testament, BS 101, Nancy Bowen

This course introduces students to the diversity of literary and theological traditions in the Old Testament. Attention will be given to the formation and role of these traditions in the context of the life and history of the people of Israel and to their function in contemporary life and faith. 3 semester hours.

Bible in Global Context, BS 334, Nancy Bowen

In conjunction with the ESR and Bethany requirement that sudents participate in a cross cultural experience, this course considers cross cultural interpretation of the Bible.  The focus will be on reading the Bible outside of North America and Europe, especially in Asia, Latin America, and Africa. Students will be asked to analyze the issues that impact the reading and meaning of the text in those contexts. Students sould understand issues of imperialism, sexism, and racism within the biblical text and in interpretation. Students will compare these other contexts and readings with their own. 3 semester hours.
Prerequisite: BS 101/101-O or B 102/102-O
Pastoral Care with the Dying and Their Families, PC 368, Jim Higginbotham
This course examines the grief process and the ways in which pastoral care can be provided during bereavement and anticipated death. It explores personal, cultural, spiritual, and theological understandings of mortality, grief, loss, and end-of-life so that students may be able to develop their own pastoral theological framework for understanding such issues. 3 semester hours.
Prerequisite: PC 101/101-O 

Liberation Theologies, TS 336, Lonnie Valentine

The Liberation Theologies course investigates various theologies of liberation, such as African-American, Latin American and Latina/o, feminist/womanist, LBGT/Queer, ecological, and nonviolent.  Students engage personally with the challenges of these theologies, visit organizations engaged in social justice, advocacy, analyze the arguments of these theologies and then begin to construct their own theology in dialog with this tradition of theology. 3 semester hours.
Prerequisite: T/TS 101/101-O
Christian Ethics, TS 336, Lonnie Valentine
An examination of the Christian moral life and the theological convictions that animate it, includeing its understanding of the good, of conscience, the nature of humanity, and the fath community's public witness. These proposals are considered in conversation with selected issues requiring careful and responsible Christian engagement, for example, war and peace, the environment, and genetic engineering.
3 semester hours.
Prerequisite: TS 101/101-O or T 101/101-O
Greek II, BS 112, Adjunct
Course description to follow.
Intro to Theology, T 101, Adjunct
This course is an introduction to theology as language that refects on the activity and presence of God in our lives. Using a variety of theological texts, the course will examine both classic expressions of the Christian faith as well as ones that treat contemporary questions and problems. 3 semester hours

Narrative Theology, T/P 313, Scott Holland

Recent decades have witnessed and welcomed a “narrative turn” in theology, hermeneutics, homiletics, biblical studies, and peace studies. This course will bring a variety of narrative theologies into constructive conversation with literary critical models of narrative theory as we study the form and function of story-shaped approaches to naming ourselves and rendering God’s name in history. Special attention will be given to how story might serve the task of seeking cultures of peace as we apply our narrative studies to autobiography (William Stafford’s Down in My Heart) and fiction (Pat Barker’s Regeneration). Students may earn theology credit by devoting their final project to a topic in narrative theology and hermeneutics or they may earn peace studies credit by researching and writing on the theme of story and peacebuilding. 3 semester hours. Prerequisite: P 126 or T/TS 101. 

Peace Studies Forum, P 200, Scott Holland
Course description to follow.

Preaching the Gospel, B/M/T 328, Dawn Ottoni-Wilhelm 

What is the gospel we preach and how does it relate to the biblical witness of Jesus Christ and the Spirit's presence among us? This upper-level course in preaching will develop a practical theology of preaching that arises out of our encounter with the synoptic Gospels and their relationship to the dynamic movement of the gospel in the church and the world today. With attention given to difficult passages of Scripture and difficult challenges facing our culture and our congregations, we will explore the good news revealed in Jesus' own preaching and the horizon of hope it offers us today. Students will preach at least two sermons and prepare a paper outlining their owin theology of preaching as it is informed by reading, lectures, and class discussions. 3 semester hours. Prerequisite: M120 or M 125 or PM 101 and B 102



Fall 2015*

NT Greek I, B 115, Adjunt

This course begins an introduction to the basic elements of New Testament Greek with an emphasis on vocabulary, the noun system, and indicative verbs. Students begin translating brief passages from the Greek New Testament. 3 semester hours. 

Patterns of Worship: Theology, Spirit, and Imagination, M 220, Adjunct

This semester-long course will introduce students to the theological, historical, creative, and performative dimensions of diverse patterns of corporate worship in North America (i.e., blended, emergent, Anabaptist, other). Through the creative interplay of theology and imagination, students will design services for a variety of settings, including worship services in Bethany’s Nicarry Chapel. 3 semester credits.

Practical Theology of Baptism, M 238, Russell Haitch

What does baptism mean in the church, and what are its implications for education and everyday life? We will examine contrasting theological positions, seeking to understand what is at stake in the great baptismal debates over questions such as “infants” versus “believers” and “water“ versus “Spirit.” Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Anabaptist, Reformed, Pentecostal and other perspectives are welcomed and will be discussed. 3 semester hours.

Just Peace, P 210, Scott Holland

From 2001 through 2011, the World Council of Churches and the Historic Peace Churches embarked upon a ten-year program called the Decade to Overcome Violence (DOV). Bethany Theological Seminary was very involved in this program in the classroom, in publishing projects, and in international consultations and conferences that took faculty to Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Americas. The culmination of DOV is seen in a document entitled An Ecumenical Call to Just Peace and in a companion study book. This course will make this material the centerpiece of study. It will also bring the Ecumenical Call into interdisciplinary engagements with the best current and classical theoretical and theological treatments of the concepts of justice and peace. 3 semester hours.

Peace Studies Forum, P 200, Scott Holland

Course description to follow.

Introduction to the New Testament, B 102, Dan Ulrich

This course offers a survey of the 27 writings that compose the New Testament canon. We will study each of these writings with attention to their literary form and content, their origins in the life of early Christian communities, and their meanings for readers today. 3 semester hours.

Creation of Modern Quaker Diversity, QS 250, Angell

This course examines the development of distinct strands of Evangelical, Mainline Pastoral, Hicksite, Independent, and Conservative/Wilburite Friends, as well as to ponder the influences upon Friends of such movements as Holiness, Pentecostalism, and religious liberalism and mondernism. The chronological emphasis in this course is on the years 1825-1925. We give special attention to the dimensions of gender, race, theology, and sexual orientation in the development of modern Quakerism. 3 semester hours.

Church's Mission in World Community, PM 231, Phil Baisley

This course focuses on how the church understands and undertakes its mission in the world. Historical and contemporary models will be examined with careful attention give to problems relating to the conversion experience, cross-cultural ministry, religious pluralism, and church growth. 3 semester hours.

Writing as Ministry, WR 101, Ben Brazil

An introduction to the concept, aspects, and challenges of writing as public ministry both by reading those who have studied the field and by examining works of literature. Topics to be explored may include the power of story to convey truth, story theology, the links between literary arts and religion, the relationship of creativity and spirituality, and the ethical ramifications of placing beauty in service of truth. 3 semester hours.

Introduction to Pastoral Care, PC 101, Jim Higginbotham

This course is an experiential and critical exploration of pastoral care. Caregiving in a faith community or by its representatives is a practical theological activity, drawing on religious tradition, social sciences, theology, and the gifts of the people involved. Therefore, this class focuses on the integration of person, faith, belief, method and practice. Skills of attending, listening, understanding, and caring are addressed in the context of social and personal dynamics. 3 semester hours.

Human Sexuality in Ministry, PC 333, Jim Higginbotham

This course examines human sexuality from a broad range of perspectives, including: theological, ethical, physiological, psychological, and sociological. It focuses on sexual issues in ministry, especially related to sexual orientation and gender roles, and the variety of ways in which sexualality is a dimension of relationships...                 3 semester hours. Prerequisite: PC 101/101-O

Constructive Theology, TS 375

This course builds upon Introduction to Theology and continues it by exploring the themes of humanity, church, and eschatology. Additionally, students will examine the idea of narrative participation in the story of God and will construct a living credo in conversation with their own histories and the range of material they have studied in seminary and beyond. 3 semester hours. Prerequisite: TS 101/101-O or T 101/101-O.

Bible, Violence, and Nonviolence, PJ 330, Lonnie Valentine

This course examines key biblical texts on such issues as warfare, nonviolence, gender, race and ecology. Both those pasages that present varieties of peacemaking efforts and the difficult texts presenting various forms of violence will be explored. In addition to the usual historical-critical tools, literary approaches will also be applied to these texts.   3 semester hours.  Prerequisite: BS 101/101-O or B 102/102-O

Process Theology, TS 364, Lonnie Valentine

Along with Liberation Theologies this course aims to develop ministry issues within a special model for doing theological reflection. Because it tries to develop a deep synthetic and holistic vision, process theology responds to an extremely broad range of problems. Some of the ones explored in this corse will be the process view of God, Jesus Christ, and the nature of God's relationship to spritual growth, human freedom, and the enivronment. The basis for this exploration requires that we first understand the work of Alfred North Whitehead. 3 semester hours.                    Prerequisite: TS 101/101-O or T 101/101-O



*Please note that specific course time scheduling does not take place more than a year ahead,
so it is not yet certain which traditional courses may be scheduled as block courses
for the  academic years ahead.  For planning purposes, all yet-to-be-determined
traditional or block courses are listed here on this




Course listings are subject to change.  Please be sure to check the Registrar's current course schedule
on the Seminary Academic Services website for possible additional courses or corrections. 

Katie Shaw Thompson
Master of Divinity

BethanyI have to admit I had no idea how much my cross-cultural trip to Marburg, Germany, would broaden my perspective. By immersing myself in German culture, I learned more about hospitality, theology, global politics, my neighbor, and myself than I thought possible in two weeks.

I was overwhelmed by the hospitality shown to us by the parish church and our host families. I will forever be grateful for those conversations across the table, across cultural differences, and across language barriers about the things that matter deeply to us all.