P.A.R.T.S. - Theology

This section covers what we, as United Methodists, believe about God, the world and the church. In addition, it’s a place to discuss how we put our theology into practice through pastoral care, outreach, and other areas of ministry.

5 things to think about:

  1. Study: Read about our Wesleyan understanding of grace. Have each group member draw a picture or graph of how Grace is part of the Christian life. Have each person share their drawing as they describe the types of Grace. Offer helpful feedback so that each person can articulate this clearly.

  2. Study: Print off copies of the Methodist Articles of Religion. Pick one item at a time for discussion, or discuss the following:
    1. Which items on the list would all Christians share in common?
    2. Which items may seem to be in response to other denominations?
    3. Is there anything new you learned? Any you disagree with?
    4. Which items are distinctively Methodist/Wesleyan?
    5. Which items are essential? Anything you would add?

  3. Case study: Watch this GBHEM video highlights pastors in a variety of extension ministries. As you watch, pay special attention to theological underpinnings for why they do what they do. Then discuss:
    1. What do you perceive as the theological foundations for your ministry?
    2. What does ordination mean? Why is it important for these people to be ordained?
    3. What types of theological questions might these people encounter in their ministry settings?
    4. Have you ever considered serving in an extension ministry?

  4. Problem: Read the Rev. Christy Thomas’ blog about the problem of evil. (Be sure to watch the YouTube video at the top of the page). Discus:
    1.  What exactly is the problem of evil, called Theodicy?
    2. Rev. Thomas’ doesn’t exactly give answers. Why not?
    3. How would you address the problem of evil?

  5. Discuss: What is the role of theology in the church? What is the role of practice? Which comes first? Is one more important than the other?

Other resources:

  1. Narrative approach to mentoring