The art of becoming: the Spirit and whole-person learning in theological education for youth ministry

Whitehead, Joanne (2019). The art of becoming: the Spirit and whole-person learning in theological education for youth ministry. University of Birmingham. Other

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This professional doctoral thesis emerges from my professional practice as a theological educator and is a practical theological inquiry into the question of how tutors might support personal and spiritual formation in theological education for youth ministry.

The empirical research process used qualitative methods, with Appreciative Inquiry forming the overarching approach. Data collection was undertaken using semi-structured one-to-one interviews and focus groups to elicit graduate and tutor experience. Crystallization was used to frame analysis of the data, drawing on thematic analysis and creative approaches, such as I poems and visual representations. Reflexivity was prioritized throughout and undertaken in various creative ways.

Three dimensions of tutor practice are identified as supporting personal and spiritual formation in this context: good practice and flexibility in learning approaches, quality relationships and facilitating growth-promoting space. These are brought into critical conversation with pneumatology, to consider how understandings of the Spirit might inform, challenge and give provocative insight into tutors' practice.

The study contributes to academic conversations about theological education for youth ministry and pneumatology. The integration of sustained reflexivity, reflection on practice, theological reflection and critical engagement with theory have led to fresh understanding and an evolution of my professional practice, thus contributing to the field of practical theology.

Type of Work: Thesis (Other)
Award Type: Other
Licence: All rights reserved
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion, Department of Theology and Religion
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BV Practical Theology


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