Saturday, March 5, 2011

Gains and Pains in Serving the Pastors (E) MSPM: An integrated approach

Master of Socio Pastoral Ministries (MSPM) is a combination of Master of Science in Social Work program offered in CPU and pastoral ministry courses. The mission of the MSPM program is to prepare graduate students for leadership roles in church, church-related institutions and community. Specifically, it is geared towards a healthy and balanced pastoral leadership, church administration and social/community services.

Significant changes in the contemporary world present new challenges to development workers in various field of endeavors including pastors/church ministers. Foremost, is the development of interdisciplinary approaches and modes of analysis in the helping professions including pastoral work. Problems brought about by these changes, as well as those caused by natural and man-made disasters pose a challenge to develop integrated interventions towards building of a just, humane and caring society.

On the other hand, our pastors are confronted with harsh realities, challenges and problems in the fields which they do not have reserved knowledge and skills from the seminaries/theological institutions. Some are handling administrative positions and development-related or church-related centers which require them additional learnings.

The program attempts to meet these needs and challenges. It also examine issues relevant to the understanding of spirituality and religion in the context of present realities and the ongoing search for meaning. It uses various theories and research efforts pertinent to the role of spirituality in psychological, sociological and social development. Teaching is done from a variety of perspectives including pastoral ministry, social work, theology, spirituality, and clinical practice areas.

Ministry & Biblical/Theology courses include Foundations of Socio Pastoral Ministry; Church: Ministry & Mission; Hermeneutics; Biblical Theology; and Biblical & Theological Foundations of Discipleship. The Socio-Pastoral Courses are as follows: Socio-Behavioral Theories; Group, Community, Social Institutions and Processes; Family Wellness & Pastoral Counseling; Models of Ministry and Leadership in the Church & Community; Community Organization & Social Welfare and Development Services; Strategies in Church and Community Mobilization; Seminar in Socio Pastoral Ministries; Social Research; Social Jurisprudence & Local Governance; Pastoral Ministry in Conflict Situations; and Administration and Management of Church and related organization/institutions

The following volunteers have served as faculty and resource persons: Pastor Francis Neil Jalando-on, Rev. Jerson Narciso, Dr. Melvin Mangana, Dr. Armando Kole, Rev. Joniel Howard Gico, Dr. Joel Ciriaco, Dr. Lucy Catalogo, Atty. Nicias Alameda, Atty. Tamano Pastor Elizer Geromiano, Prof. DZ Patriarca-Lariza, Prof. Adele Fegarido, Dr. Bernabe Pagara, Pastor Melchor Lariza, Pastor Rosendo Mije and Bro. Andrew Escuban.

Three years after the program was implemented, it has produced 23 pioneering graduates from Panay and Negros. They were conferred their degree on May 1, 2010 at Ajuy Christian Development Academy, Ajuy, Iloilo.

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