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Talking Faith and Money

Ended Dec 7, 2019
2 credits

Full course description

Course Overview

This course offers students three key takeaways that are foundational to the subsequent courses in the Certificate in Church and Non-Profit Management. The class series equips leaders, staff and board members with tools to engage issues of financial and organizational management that can dramatically impact the sustainability of their communities of faith. In this class, Talking Faith & Money: At the Intersection of Theology, Economics & Organizational Realities, participants grapple with their own individual and community’s theology and how it intersects with themes of money, economics, and organizational management.

First, participants will reflect theologically on their current attitudes, practices and hidden assumptions about business and capitalism and observe how these change over the period of the course and future courses in the continuing education program. Second, students will gain a deeper understanding of their relationship to money and how it affects their work in the church or faith-based nonprofits. Third, students will take away a greater appreciation of the value of multiple business skill sets and how these might work together to serve their church community. In the process, students will apply concrete business skills to the church community in which they are serving.

Upon successful completion of the course, students should have/be able to:

  1. A deeper understanding of your personal relationship to money and how it affects your work in the church.
  2. A historical perspective and the contextual dimension of religion and capitalism.
  3. Begin to apply concrete business skills to the church community or faith-based organization in which you are serving.

Weekly Topics

Week 1: Course Introduction

Week 2: Christian perspective on money and economics

Week 3: The treatment of finances and possessions in Luke-Acts

Week 4: Early Christian thinking about money, economics, and capitalism

Week 5: Modern overview of the Christian tradition’s estrangement from economic realities

Week 6: Applying family systems to the financial challenges of congregational life

Week 7: Mentors for the Creation of Our Theology of Economics

Week 8: 4-step process for beginning a new conversation between religion and economics

Time Commitment (online only)

Students can expect 2-3 hours a week dedicated to engaging in course material, assignments and activities.  Please note, students who are new to online learning and who are developing their tech savvy can expect to invest up to an additional hour a week as they learn to navigate the online course platform (Canvas Catalog) and the relevant tools used in each week’s modules.

Required Texts

  1. Beginning a Theology of Economics by Mark S. Markuly (available via course site on Canvas)
  2. Course Reader (purchased from Redshelf; please see Canvas course for directions.)
  3. TED Radio Videos (linked in Canvas course)
  4. Canvas course content pages

For additional information, please contact: