As the “blogger” for The Disciples College and The Mission for Biblical Literacy, I am frequently asked two questions by friends and colleagues:
- Can you tell me more about Dr. “Woody” Kent, the sponsor of the blog “Counting the Cost”? and
- What are the curriculum tracks which are offered for Biblical Literacy and Education for Ministry?
Who is The Reverend Dr. R. Woods Kent?
Dr. Kent (Woody) is an honored Minister of the Gospel, educated in some of the premier institutions in America, and respected and honored for scholarship, alumnus service, writing, and, or course, ministry — local congregations, regional ministries, national ministries, and international societies. Woody was Ordained in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in 1962. He graduated with a B.A. from Lynchburg University, the M.A. from Butler University, the M. Div. from Christian Theological Seminary, and the D. Min. degree from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. He served congregations in Kentucky, Indiana, Florida, and Georgia. He was a distinguished and highly acclaimed Regional Minister of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Virginia, from where he served as the Regional-General Church Relations Committee Chair of the College of Regional Ministers. Some, but not all, of his appointments include service on Campus Ministries Boards at the Universities of Miami and of Evansville, of Purdue University, and of Florida Institute of Technology. He was a member of the Board of Trustees of Lynchburg University, where he was also named as the recipient of “The Distinguished Alumni Award.” His earned the Rapp Doctoral Dissertation Award from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary (his dissertation is in at least 114 Accredited Seminary Libraries) and he has been published in “The Disciple”, “Vanguard”, and “Minister’s Bulletin.” Woody was honored by the International Society of Theda Phi and the Shenandoah Valley Clergy and Congregations. He served on the Church Finance Council, a General Disciples Unit, and on the Joint International Educators Committee of the National Council of Churches.
The Sponsorship of this Blog by Dr. Kent is an honor to both Christian College of Georgia…”The Disciples College”, and to the Mission for Biblical Literacy. We regard him with esteem and gratitude, and it is our desire to share information and inspiration in a manner and style which honors his service and his devotion to God’s people.
Woody really likes this cartoon.
What Are the Curriculum Tracks for Students?
The Disciples College, in Partnership with The Mission for Biblical Literacy offers THREE Curriculum Tracks for Biblical Literacy, Biblical Education, and Discipleship:
For Seekers: We currently offer an eight-week course including sixty (60) courses (average 5 minutes) and eight class meetings, all designed to introduce ANYONE to the basics of the Christian Faith. This is discussed in greater detail in the previous three blogs. This is also a method of EVANGELISM for Christians who see and act on opportunities to introduce others to Christ. In this sense, it is a tool for the Church, and it is arranged in a manner in which a person may actually mentor someone else as they move deeper into a relationship with God and and understanding of the Gospel, the Bible, and the Christian Faith. How is your evangelism ministry going as a mature disciple of Jesus Christ? Are you introducing others to the Faith? If you have grown a bit sluggish in this regard, this could be your opportunity to invite someone to join you in a class. The cost is only $12.00 per student, and that includes tuition-for-to (“two-ition”): the student and his or her mentor.
For Followers: We offer two courses for those who see themselves as ready to dive deep into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. It is that simple. The courses are “Life is a Journey” which continues the relationship of the student with a mentor. The cost is a bit more, but the content is also much more involved. Is is assumed that each student has already made a personal commitment to Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, and it is understood that each student will have a mentor (again, there is no additional cost for the mentor to enroll, but he or she will need a copy of the student’s guide and the mentor’s guide, both free as downloadable documents). This course continues over twelve (12) weeks and enrollment is $36.00. The second course in this curriculum is entitled “Fifty-two Major Stories of the Bible.” This course is more “independent” and the students meet, with or without mentors, for twenty-six (26) sessions. This course also requires that the student submit brief summaries of each of fifty-two stories (26 Old Testament and 26 New Testament), along with a cumulative paper describing the impact of the course on his/her life and faith. This course can also be conducted in small groups, where all participants watch the lectures (time is about 25 – 40 minutes average per lecture) and then have their own discussion facilitated by a group member. The cost of this course is also $26.00. The total cost (unless a student elects to purchase the books rather than download the books) is $62.00. And the mentor enrolls for free.
For Disciples: This is where the students begin to experience a greater degree of independence. At this point, the student is actually enrolled in The Disciples College, but the focus of the year of enrollment is “Biblical Literacy”. The student will have several options from which to choose one. These options are produced by three different ministries. One is more “academic” in nature, with lectures and quizzes, and introduces critical methods of Bible study. One is more narrative, walking the student through the Bible with stimulating pictures and maps corresponding to Biblical history, events and personalities. And one is more directed at the more contemporary methods of teaching and learning with rich video content and assigned readings. All three options are excellent, and none is preferred over another. The student and his academic advisor will collaborate in selecting the best option. There are cost differences, but none are what would be regarded as “expensive” for a first year of a College curriculum (in other words, $19 – $49 per month. There are eighteen classroom sessions for this year of study, all done online through http://www.zoominary.com and available on any device.
Two More Courses of Study Available From The Disciples College
For Servant-Leaders: Many consider this our preparation for ministry and possibly ministerial standing (licensing, commissioning, ordination, etc.) for students. There are fifteen areas of competency in this curriculum, and each year is a stand-alone year. In other words, within completion of the second year of “Servant-Leadership Education” a student may earn a Disciples College degree. This will not be outlined in detail here, as it is a very extensive course of study. Extensive, not expensive. Most students can enroll for less than $800 for the year. Additional years with honors are similarly priced. Monthly payments are arranged.
For Digital Marketplace Ministers: Here is a question: where will you find most Christians today? Where do they hangout? Where do they interact and carry on a social life? Where do they learn? Where do they google (hint) to get answers to their questions? Exactly. The Digital Marketplace is the new arena for ministry. If you are going fishing, the best way to ensure that you catch fish is to “fish close to them.” Likewise with “fishers of men and women.” What does Christ tell us the he will make us as his disciples who choose the lifestyle of servant-leadership, whether or not we carry a “ministerial title”? The Disciples College offers a new degree for a new era: The Master of Digital Marketplace Ministry. Watch this blog and our websites for further information. Enrollment in this program begins in July, 2018.
What Is My Next Step?
Well, that’s it; answers to two frequently asked questions. If you read this far, you are interested. And if you are interested, you can help us by (a) liking the blog and leaving a comment, and (b) sharing the blog post with someone else. More importantly, however, if that THIS BLOG offers you an opportunity to introduce someone to Jesus Christ. Will you do it?
Need help: Call Dr. Bob Harris, President of The Disciples College and The Mission for Biblical Literacy. Or email to firstname.lastname@example.org Depending on where you are in the world, recognize that our hours of operation are between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m Eastern Standard Time (US). Thank you.