ERIC Number: EJ850345
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Oct
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 25
Faith in the Classroom: The Perspective of a Pastor Called to College Teaching
Martin, Thomas W.
Teaching Theology & Religion, v11 n4 p213-221 Oct 2008
Can one uphold a call from an ecclesiastical body while teaching in a college classroom? This paper will argue that the dual roles of pastor and professor can be integrated by the adoption of faith development as a learning goal. This goal seems to stand at odds with three important aspects of academic teaching: the demographic reality of religious pluralism, the ethical requirement to preserve student autonomy, and the overarching goal of a university education to promote critical thinking. My argument will be that, far from violating these three areas, faith development as a broad learning goal can actually provide a valuable deepening of pluralism, autonomy, and critical thought in the educational experience of students. The method of exploration will be autobiographical. I will show how it is that in my dual roles as an ELCA pastor called to a faculty post I articulate and use faith development as an overarching learning goal in the context of (1) a theological pedagogy based on an interfaith logos theology, (2) a value-laden pedagogy vis-a-vis consumerist self-formation, and (3) an adaptation of stages of faith development to the classroom.
Descriptors: Christianity, Protestants, Clergy, Career Development, College Faculty, Spiritual Development, Autobiographies, Student Educational Objectives, Educational Experience
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A