This is the first week back for many students for school, and that includes me. I have just begun year number 3 out of 5 in working towards my Master's of Divinity degree. Each week this means that I pack up my stuff and drive 1 hour and 45 minutes to Philadelphia for my classes. My classes are over two consecutive days, so I spend the night at Andrea's parents house.
My normal semester in the past would be 2-3 classes. That's a pretty managable work load (because I am still full-time Pastor and Husband/Dad) and it comes close to getting me done in 5 years. I registered for three classes for this semester...and then, for some reason, I let my friend talk me into added a fourth class. I don't know what I was thinking. In reality, I don't think that the fourth class will be too much more work...and it give me 8 units this semester instead of 4 or 6.
So here is the class breakdown:
Counseling Skills for the Local Pastor- teaching effective tools for clergy counseling. I hope this class stays practical, because I could use some practical help in this area. People are always coming to the church looking for help, and at times, I feel a little helpless in what to offer them.
Bibical Interpretations: Our professor for this class, Craig Keener, is really good and really funny. He's written several commentaries that I already have. This should be a great class.
Methodist History- Required by the UM Church for those seeking ordination. I'm trying to keep an open mind about this one. I know there is a lot one can learn from our history and heritage...but my concern is that in the UM Church we are more concerned about our history and heritage than we our about proclaiming the gospel.
Systematic Theology I- This is going to be my toughes class. We're going to be discussing different theological views of God, Creation, Sin, etc. This leads into Systematics II next semester.
Those are the classes. On my Monday Morning Update, I'll probably add a section on what is going on in seminary.
Apparently, Tropical Storm Hanna is going to hit us tomorrow (Saturday). We need the rain badly. Too bad it's all going to come at once and run off back into the ocean.