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The Shape of Practical Theology
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Too often in the life of the church, theological reflection and the practical matters of leading and serving have been considered independently. The result has been the impoverishment of both Christian faith and Christian practice. In this groundbreaking book Ray Anderson reflects theologicallyand practically on preaching, worship, ethics, social justice, therapy, family, homosexuality, burnout in ministry, reconciliation in relationships and theological education itself. The result is The Shape of Practical Theology, a new and renewing foundation for engaging in Christian ministry. Anderson lays out his threefold goal as follows:
  • to define more clearly the shape of practical theology as truly a theological enterprise rather than mere mastery of skills and methods
  • to demonstrate the praxis of practical theology as critical engagement with the interface between the word of God as revealed through Scripture and the work of God taking place in and through the church in the world
  • to deal with practical pastoral theology from the perspective of those who are on the "field of play" of life and ministry, where preaching, counseling and teaching does affect for many persons the outcome of the game
Illuminated by stimulating discussion and helpful case studies, The Shape of Practical Theology is aimed at seminary students, at Christian educators, and at working pastors and counselors. Anderson's work, fascinating and fruitful, brings together the Word of God with the Spirit of God in the ever-changing context of real-life ministry.
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"This is exactly the kind of book my students are thirsting to read. Anderson faces the real theological issues such as postmodernism, the nature of a 'praxis' theology, theological hermeneutics and theological anthropology as well as crucial ministerial concerns such as clergy burnout, homosexuality, forgiveness, the nature of Christian counseling and ministry to the family."--Christian D. Kettler, Professor of Theology and Philosophy, Friends University (Witchita, Kansas)

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