LW Course Descriptions

LW 550 – Introduction to Worship 

This self-standing, two-week (.5 credit) module is a prerequisite for all other modules in Leading the Church in Worship. In it, students learn core concepts and theological issues that will be drawn on throughout their liturgical and homiletical studies. Specifically, in this module students will become familiar with

  • a basic understanding of ritual
  • a general understanding of worship
  • a beginning theology of Christian worship and proclamation
  • a broad overview of the history of Christian worship
  • issues related to leadership in worship

Prerequisite: None
Credit:  0.5
Instructor:  Dr. Leah Schade


LW 551 – Liturgical Time

In this course, students examine the way the Church interprets and structures time in relation to worship of God through Christ. Specific issues to be studied:

  • linear vs. cyclical time
  • Sabbath vs. Lord’s Day
  • structuring the time of the worship service
  • structuring the liturgical year.

Prerequisite: LW 550
Credit:  0.5
Instructor:  Dr. Leah Schade


LW 552 – Congregational Song 

In this course, students learn the history and theology of congregational singing as a significant element of Christian liturgy and gain practical skills for choosing congregational music for worship. The course is oriented toward students with minimal musical training.

This course is a two-week (.5 credit), self-standing module. “Self-standing” means students work through the material independently and at their own pace (as long as all material is completed by 6:00 pm ET on the Saturday of the second week.

Prerequisite: LW 550
Credit:  0.5
Instructor:  Dr. John Opsata


LW 553 – New Birth to Dying in Christ:  Baptism, Table, Wedding, Funeral 

This course is designed to offer students an introduction to the history, theology, and leadership of Christian rites of passage and sacraments/ ordinances. Students will focus on the major rituals of baptism, Table, weddings and funerals.

Prerequisite: LW 550
Credit:  1.0
Instructor:  Dr. Leah Schade


LW 554 – Sermon Preparation 

Students will learn practical skills for moving from exegesis of a biblical text to a finished sermon. Steps considered will include:

  • developing a sermonic claim
  • determining an appropriate rhetorical form to carry the claim
  • discovering imagery and language to bring the claim to life.

To take this course, students must be able to preach in their ministry site (and record/upload the recording) following the on-campus intensives.

Prerequisites: LW 550, IF 552, IS 560
Credit:  2.0 (Offered during On-Campus Intensives)
Instructor:  Dr. Leah Schade


LW 572 – Preaching & Leading Worship in the Black Church

E. B. Dubois in his book The Souls of Black Folk stated that “the preacher is the most unique personality developed by the Negro on American soil. He early appeared on the plantation and found his function as the healer of the sick, the interpreter of the Unknown, the comforter of the sorrowing, the supernatural avenger of wrong, and the one who rudely but picturesquely expressed the longing, disappointment, and resentment of a stolen and oppressed people. Thus as bard, physician, judge, and priest, within the narrow limits allowed by the slave system, rose the Negro preacher, and under him the first Afro-American institution, the Negro church.”

This course will provide the students with a broad overview of the central place that this unique personality plays in leading the black worship experience. The students will become familiar with the black preacher’s role and function in the black church community, the emphasis on call, preaching style and prayer.

Prerequisite:  LW 550
Credit:  1.0
Instructor:  Dr. William Lee


LW 573 – Biblical Preaching

TBA

Prerequisite:  LW 550
Credit:  1.0
Instructor:  Prof. Pablo Jimenez


LW 575 – Worship Renewal

While the decrease of participation in church life in North American society can be traced to a range of complex reasons, one certainly must be the mediocrity of preaching, liturgy and music in worship. The Twentieth Century has seen major liturgical renewal efforts in the form of the scholarly Liturgical Movement research, Vatican II, the WCC’s efforts resulting especially in the Baptism, Eucharist, and Ministry document, the widespread acceptance of the Revised Common Lectionary, and the struggle between “traditional” and “praise” worship especially in the arena of music. But continued work to renew worship at the congregational level is needed for the Twenty-first century church if it is to thrive and inform the lives of its members. This course will introduce students to the history of worship renewal and principles for evaluating and renewing worship in their congregations.

Prerequisite:  LW 550
Credit:  0.5
Instructor:  Faculty


LW 576 – Worship Space 

In this course, students examine the evolution, significance and best uses of Christian liturgical space. Specific issues to be studied:

  • typical floorplans of worship spaces
  • liturgical art
  • liturgical symbolism
  • renewal of worship space

Prerequisite: LW 550
Credit:  0.5
Instructor:  Dr. Rochelle Stackhouse


LW 577 – Practice Preaching

This course is designed to allow students the opportunity to practice and improve on the range of skills learned in Sermon Preparation (LW554) while giving focused attention to one homiletical issue.

The course is limited to eight students, each of whom will preach, record and upload one sermon to be watched individually and discussed in weekly synchronous video conferences. Sermons must have been preached within one month of the start of the course.

Because of its synchronous structure, the course lasts for a month; but because of the student work load expected, the course receives .5 credits.

Prerequisites:  LW 550, LW 554
Credit:  0.5
Instructor:   Dr. Leah Schade


LW 579 – Preaching and Leading Worship in the Small Church

Smaller congregations present both different challenges and potential for meaningful and appropriate Christian worship than larger churches. In this course, students will explore a range of principles and practices specifically targeted for leading worship and preaching in congregations with an attendance of 100 or less.

Prerequisite:  LW 550
Credit:  1.0
Instructor:  Faculty


LW 590 – LW Competency Exercise

*Please refer to section 7.1.6-7.1.8 of the Student Handbook*

Prerequisite:  Completion of all other LW 500 level work
Credit:  0.5
Instructor:  Dr. Leah Schade


LW 670 – Interpreting and Preaching the Synoptic Gospels

Sound exegesis is necessary if today’s preaching is to contain any of the depth and power of the ancient Christian kerygma. The link between academic biblical scholarship and the life of the church and of the individual Christian sitting in the pew, however, is often strained. In this seminar students will enhance their skills in critical interpretation of the Synoptic Gospels that should be used in the service of preaching the Good News as well as examining pitfalls into which trained exegetes can fall when making the move from the desk to the pulpit.

Prerequisite: Successfully completed one competency exercise and a minimum of 60% of LW 500 level work
Credit:  2.0
Instructor:  Faculty


LW 671 – Technology in the Sanctuary

This course examines the evolving role of technology in Christian worship and related ministries of the church, introduces students to theological and practical issues related to utilizing technologies available to worship planners, equip students with beginning skills in using some of these technologies, and gives chance for students to reflect on the influence technology has on their own spiritual lives. Prerequisite: Passed at least one competency exam and 60% of LW 500 level work.

Prerequisite:  Successfully completed one competency exercise and a minimum of 60% of LW 500 level work
Credit:  2.0
Instructor:  Faculty


 LW 672 –  Sermonic Design

During the last forty years, homiletical scholarship has given extensive attention to the question of sermonic form, especially since 1) content and form are inseparable and 2) sermon form implies a certain theological understanding concerning the nature of the Good News and of scripture, and vice versa. However, one rhetorical form does not fit all sermons. This course in sermonic design will serve as an introduction to a few of sermon forms that have been most influential over the last few decades, and will include discussions of how one chooses an appropriate form for a given sermon, how form shapes delivery, and how different forms are heard and experienced.
Prerequisite:  Successfully completed one competency exercise and a minimum of 60% of LW 500 level work
Credit:  2.0
Instructor:  Faculty


LW 673 –  Preaching in Post Modernity

Challenges to the Enlightenment epistemology and suspicion of authority arose in the late Twentieth century and continue to influence society and the church today. This course will explore the dynamics of postmodernism and a number of different homiletical responses to it.

Prerequisite:  Successfully completed one competency exercise and a minimum of 60% of LW 500 level work
Credit:  2.0
Instructor:  Faculty


LW 674 –  Generational Issues in Preaching and Worship

American society is currently composed of at least five generational cohorts, each with a distinctive world view molded by foundational experiences in history, culture and religion. The business world has long understood the need to develop and market products to suit the differences among these generations, but the church tends to shape its worship and institutional life on a “one size fits all” basis. In readings, video, lecture and conversation we will explore the unique qualities of the WWII (or Silent) Generation, Boomers, Gen X, Millennials and their children’s as-yet-unnamed generation (which some call “Z”) to understand how we might translate the gospel in worship and preaching with language and experiences which will better enable all of them to connect with the Holy and grow as disciples.

Prerequisite:  Successfully completed one competency exercise and a minimum of 60% of LW 500 level work
Credit:  2.0
Instructor:  Dr. Rochelle Stackhouse

LW 6__ –  NEW 600-LEVEL LW ELECTIVE

TBA

Prerequisite:  Successfully completed one competency exercise and a minimum of 60% of LW 500 level work
Credit:  2.0
Instructor:  Dr. Leah Schade

♦ Updated 6/28/16