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Theological Field Education

Handbook 2013-2014

To: Friends of Vancouver School of Theology, Mentors and Students:

Thank you for your interest in Vancouver School of Theology’s theological field education programme. We hope that the following pages will supply the details you are seeking. For further information please do not hesitate to contact me. Rev. Brenda Fawkes Director Theological Field Education fieldeducation@vst.edu (September 15, 2013)

Vancouver School of Theology

Field Education IMPORTANT DATES 2013-2014 Monday, September 23, 2013 - TFE 2 “Studio” and TFE 3 “Practice” field placements begin on this date.

*****Changed to October 1st , 2013 – TFE 2 Studio Field Education Mentors meet with Director of Field Education 10am -12pm. Room 423 Following this gathering of mentors and students, we recommend that each placement site recognize its covenant relationship with their student during Sunday worship, in an article in the newsletter or at a reception. Mentors in agency placements will introduce students to other staff and clients.

Monday, September 30th, 2013 - A draft of the student’s Learning Covenant (for TFE 3 Practice) and the signed Site Covenant must be submitted to the Field Education Office.

Tuesday October 15th, 2013 - An approved Learning Covenant (for the TFE 3 Practice unit) must be submitted to the Field Education Office.

Monday, October 21 to Friday, October 25, 2013 - Students are entitled to take one weekend off from the parish (or other appropriate time in social placements) during the fall Reading Week unless otherwise negotiated with their mentors.

Monday, December 2nd, 2013 - This is the due date for written assessments and mid-year evaluations from second and third year students and their mentors. Successful completion of the fall field placement unit (TFE 2 Studio or TFE 3 Practice) requires a timely submission of the required evaluations.

Sunday, December 22nd to Sunday, January 19th , 2014 - Students are not expected to be in their field placements during the Christmas holidays unless otherwise negotiated with their supervisors.

Monday, January 20, 2014 - TFE 2 Studio and TFE 3 Practice placement units begin again on this date. Monday, March 3- Friday March 7th, 2014 - Students are entitled to take one weekend off from their field placements during the spring Reading Week unless otherwise negotiated with their supervisors. Wednesday, April 2, 2014 - This is the due date for year-end written evaluations from students and mentors Monday, April 14th - Student applications for summer and fall field placements are due. Student proposals from TFE One Exploration are presented and submitted to Director of Field Education

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Table of Contents IMPORTANT DATES ................................................................................................................... PAGE 2 1.

INTRODUCTION .............................................................................................................. PAGE 5 1.1 Outline of Theological Field Education at VST .............................................. Page 5 1.2 Goals of Theological Field Education at VST ................................................. Page 5 1.3 Important Role of Mentors .................................................................................. Page 5 1.4 VST Philosophy of Theological Field Education .......................................... Page 6

2.

DESCRIPTION OF THEOLGICAL FIELD EDUCATION UNITS .............................. PAGE 6 2.1` TFE I Practice ........................................................................................................... Page 7 2.2 TFE 2 Studio (PT 651/652) .................................................................................. Page 7 2.3 TFE 3 Practice ........................................................................................................... Page 7 2.4 TFE 3 Summer Practice ........................................................................................ Page 8 2.5 Additional Requirements for TFE 3 Practice Unit ...................................... Page 8

3.

ASSUMPTIONS AND DEFINITIONS ........................................................................... PAGE 9 3.1 Theological Reflection .......................................................................................... Page 9 3.2 Site ............................................................................................................................... Page 9 3.3 Mentor ........................................................................................................................ Page 9 3.4 Learning Covenant for TFE Practice ................................................................ Page 9

4.

MENTORS ........................................................................................................................ PAGE 10 4.1 Responsibilities and Opportunities ............................................................... Page 10 4.2 Mentoring of Students in TFE 1 Exploration and TFE Studio ............... Page 11 4.3 Guidelines for TFE 2 Final Year Written Reports ..................................... Page 11 4.4 Mentoring of Student sin TFE Practice ......................................................... Page 11 4.5 Guidelines for TFE 3 Practice Mid-Year Reports ...................................... Page 12 4.6 Guidelines for TFE 3 Practice End of Year Reports .................................. Page 12

5.

STUDENTS ...................................................................................................................... PAGE 13 5.1 Responsibilities and Expectations ................................................................ Page 13 5.2 Students Responsibilities in Relation to Mentor ...................................... Page 13 5.3 Student’s Responsibility in Relation to Evaluation ................................. Page 14 5.4 Student’s Mid-Year Evaluation Report ........................................................ Page 14 5.5 Student’s Final Evaluation Report ................................................................. Page 15 5.6 Theological Reflection ....................................................................................... Page 15

6.

ASSESSMENT AND EVALUATION ............................................................................ PAGE 15 6.1 General Information ........................................................................................... Page 15 6.2 Evaluation Process and Written Reports .................................................... Page 16

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APPENDIX I: TFE 1 EXPLORATION .................................................................................... PAGE 17 APPENDIX II: PT651/652 LEADERSHIP STUDIO COURSE DESCRIPTION ............. PAGE 21 APPENDIX III: LEADERSHIP STUDIO FAQ ....................................................................... PAGE 24 APPENDIX IV: LEADERSHIP STUDIO APPLICATION ..................................................... PAGE 29 APPENDIX V: MENTOR AND SITE COVENANT ................................................................ PAGE 31 APPENDIX VI: ON-SITE DENOMINATIONAL LEARNING OUTCOMES ...................... PAGE 35 United Church of Canada On-Site Learning Outcome Log .............................. Page 36 Anglican Expectations for Field Education at VST ............................................ Page 37 On-Site Denominational Learning Outcomes – Presbyterian ....................... Page 39 APPENDIX VII: SITE COVENANT FOR TFE 3 PRACTICE ............................................... PAGE 40 APPENDIX VIII: A SAMPLE LEARNING COVENANT ....................................................... PAGE 42 APPENDIX IX: SAMPLE PROCESS FOR A REFLECTION SESSION ............................... PAGE 45 APPENDIX X: A MODEL OF THEOLOGICAL REFLECTION BASED ON LIFE EXPERIENCE ......................................................................................................... PAGE 50 APPENDIX XI: A MODEL OF THEOLOGICAL REFLECTION ON STUDENT EXPERIENCES AT FIELD PLACEMENT SITES ....................................................... PAGE 51 APPENDIX XII: THE THEOLOGICAL REFLECTION SPIRAL ......................................... PAGE 53 APPENDIX XIII: HOW TO PROVIDE CONSTRUCTIVE FEEDBACK ............................. PAGE 55 APPENDIX XIV: RECOMMENDATION OF READINESS FOR MINISTRY .................... PAGE 57 APPENDIX XV: APPLICABLE VST POLICIES ..................................................................... PAGE 61

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1. INTRODUCTION 1.1 Outline of Theological Field Education at VST Students in the M.Div. programme at VST are required to complete three full units of theological field education or equivalent. The normal flow of TFE Units is as follows:

Year One: TFE 1 Exploration is normally introduced during PT 500 and carried out in the spring preceding the student’s entry into PT 651

Year Two: TFE 2 Studio is done over two terms during the academic year, September – April as part of PT 651/652.

Year Three: TFE 3 Practice is usually done in the third year but may be done earlier after consultation with the TFE Director. Summer Placements may be used to replace TFE 3 Practice. A Unit of CPE (Clinical Pastoral Education) and United Church Supervised Ministry Education may also be used to fulfill TFE 3 requirements.

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1.2 Goals of Theological Field Education at VST First Year (TFE 1 Exploration) – In the spring of their first year, students will follow-up on the concluding papers written for PT500. They interview potential mentors who have been recommended to them, based on the vocational direction expressed in their papers. They search for a ministry site (plus its mentor) which provides opportunity to engage and reflect critically on leadership challenges arising from the changing role of church in society. The Director will provide seminars for those enrolled in TFE 1 Exploration. (See Appendix I)

Second Year (TFE 2 Studio) - In the second year, over two terms, students participate in the Leadership Studio PT651/652 which directs and integrates their experience in the field placement.

Third Year (TFE 3 Practice) In their third year students become immersed in the ministry of a congregation or social placement, participating in various ways which are appropriate to their learning goals, that particular ministry context, and the requirements of their denominations (See Appendix VI “Denominational On-Site Learning Outcomes). Interaction with their supervisor provides support and feedback on their “hands-on” experience. They also do theological reflection together in which they open themselves to explore the presence and activity of God in the field placement experience.

1.3 Important Role of Mentors

Vancouver School of Theology is indebted to ministry leaders in congregations and social placements who volunteer their services as mentors of students in their field placements. Information concerning that task may be found in Section Four.

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1.4 VST Philosophy of Theological Field Education Field education placements at VST are designed to be mutual learning experiences in which students, mentors, and the School’s faculty establish a teaching and learning network. Although our backgrounds in ministry and our levels of engagement in a student’s placement may vary, each of us is engaged in the teaching and learning process. St. Paul’s image of the body of Christ, one with many complementary parts, commends itself to theological field education. We are mutually accountable to God and to one another. VST strives to develop an educational experience in which dialogue fosters a respectful learning environment. Posing questions, offering insights, giving encouragement and direction are the norm. The pastoral theology and theological field education programme is grounded in adult education and practice. The principles of adult education are employed in the following ways: •

Students are self-directed independent learners who take responsibility for their learning. They work with mentors, student peer groups, and instructors to develop Learning Covenants and clear strategies for achieving goals, objectives, action plans and evaluation tools. Pastoral theology courses and field placements encourage students to discover and celebrate their spiritual gifts, identify their limitations and to discern their potential in ministry in the light of their faith, the Christian tradition, life circumstances and vocational journeys. Students’ personal, cultural and denominational histories are respected in all pastoral theology courses and field placements.

2. DESCRIPTION OF THEOLOGICAL FIELD EDUCATION UNITS

All students in the M.Div. program are required to complete three units of supervised theological field education. Though mandatory, these units are not counted in the credit hour requirement of the degree programme nor are students charged tuition for any unit of theological field education. Students should register for TFE when registering for their courses. The actual hours spent in TFE units 2 and 3 include (a) the Sunday worship service (if appropriate to the placement), (b) sessions with the student’s mentor, and (c) special projects, meetings or events in which the student is engaged as part of her or his learning covenant. The time required to plan for other meetings, workshops and worship services should be included in time spent in the field placement work and must be negotiated with their mentor. Placements for TFE 2 and TFE 3 usually last for an entire academic year unless there are September 2013

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compelling reasons to change placements. Arrangements for theological field education placements must be discussed with the Director of Field Education before final decisions are made regarding their appropriateness. 2.1 TFE I Practice

TFE 1 is a unit of self-directed, denominationally guided, pre-requisite preparation for PT651/652. It is normally introduced in the fall term course PT 500 of the first year of a student’s M.Div. programme and continues in a self-directed four to sixhour weekly commitment for the Spring Term (ten to twelve weeks). This unit includes 1-3 seminars in spring term and progress is recorded in an Exploration Log. (See Appendix I for Expectations of TFE 1). Note that practicum hours associated with PT551 (“Pastoral Identity and Practice”) are supervised by the instructor and do not fall under TFE credits per se.

2.2 TFE 2 Studio (PT 651/652) TFE 2 is undertaken in the Fall and Spring Terms of the second year of a student’s M.Div. programme. The student is required to undertake a ten to twelve-hour weekly commitment during each term (ten to twelve weeks). This is an integrated part of PT 651/652. (See Appendix II and V for the Site Covenant and PT 651/652 course description.) Students should plan their academic coursework cognizant of PT 651/652 required time commitments.

2.3 TFE 3 Practice (see additional requirements in 2.5)

TFE 3 is normally* undertaken in the Fall and Spring terms of the third year of a student’s M.Div. programme. This unit requires the student to undertake an eight to ten-hour weekly commitment during each term (ten to twelve weeks). For this unit students may be placed in a congregational, societal or overseas setting. (See Section 2.5 below as well as Appendix VII for the Site Covenant.) (*) However, if the student would benefit from more practical experience before entering the Studio the TFE Director may advise TFE 3 Practice to precede TFE 2 Studio.

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2.4 TFE 3 Summer Practice Students have the option of a summer unit of supervised theological field education that fulfills part or all of the requirements of TFE 3 Practice. This unit requires the student to undertake an eight to ten-hour (or 16-20 hour) weekly commitment for ten to twelve weeks in the Summer Term. For this unit students may be placed in a congregational, societal or overseas setting.

The requirements for a Summer Practice Unit are the same as those for TFE 3 Practice with one addition: the student will participate in a concluding integration seminar to be held during the Fall Orientation Week.

2.5 Additional Requirements for TFE 3 Practice Unit

(a) A Learning Covenant is a contractual statement of goals and action plans outlined in section 3.4) to be submitted to the Field Education Office by the dates indicated in the Important Dates List.

In summer placements, the Learning Covenant needs to be submitted within one week of the beginning of the placement in order for the student to receive credit for the placement. By the second week of the placement, the covenant must be agreed to by all three parties including the TFE Director and mentor. In the third year the agreement of the DDF is needed as well. (See Appendix VIII for a sample covenant.)

(b) A Site Covenant is to be submitted at the same time as the Learning Covenant. This Site Covenant must be signed by the Mentor, the student and an official representative of the congregation or agency. (See Appendix VII.) (c) The student meets with the Mentor one hour per week or two hours every other week for theological reflection.

(d) Mid-term and final reports from the student and mentor are due on the dates indicated in the Important Dates list. In the case of a summer placement, final reports are due within two weeks of completion of the unit. (e) Students in field placements require a Police Check: One way to do this is to use the web address for online criminal record checks: www.truecheck.ca. Apparently the service is fast, usually 24-48 hours for online verification, with an original signed document mailed to the person requesting it within a few business days. When you receive the document take it to the Director of Theological Field Education. Alternatively, if you live on campus, take a form (which is available from the TFE Director) to the RCMP office on Westbrook Mall. Take some proof of your present place of residence (such as an envelope addressed to you there).

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3. ASSUMPTIONS AND DEFINITIONS 3.1 Theological Reflection A key component in field education training is the development of skill and the habit of doing theological reflection. This requires a commitment of time and use of varied methods in order to assist the student to integrate experience and theory. (See Appendices X, XI, and XII.)

3.2 Site

A site is a setting for ministry (congregation, parish, hospital, prison, service and/or social agency, etc.) that has been approved by the Director of Theological Field Education for a student placement lasting for at least one semester. Field education sites provide placements for students under the guidance of a mentor as they experience ministry firsthand and complete specific learning goals. An approved Site Covenant is required for each site annually. (See Appendices V and VII.) This covenant must be signed by a legal representative of the congregation’s governing board.

3.3 Mentor

A mentor is a lay, commissioned, ordered or ordained person serving in ministry who provides on-site guidance and support to field placement students. He/She is appointed by and accountable to the Director of Theological Field Education. Mentors offer their students support and feedback through a disciplined educational process in which they reflect on all aspects of the student’s ministry at the field placement site. Mentors also assist Vancouver School of Theology by producing written reports in order to meet the due dates set out in the Important Dates list.. (See Section 4 for details about the mentor’s task).

3.4 Learning Covenant for TFE Practice A Learning Covenant: •

• •

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is a contractual agreement concerning terms of accountability between a student, mentor and the School, which includes the specific goals that the student will strive to achieve during a field placement. (See sample in Appendix VIII) is developed by a student in consultation with their mentor and the TFE Director.

includes specific learning goals which are appropriate to the field placement and which meet the expectations of the pastoral theology course which may be associated with a specific unit of theological field education

must be approved by the TFE Director as must any subsequent amendments to the Covenant

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• •

may be revised mid-year with the approval of the mentor and TFE Director. A draft of the changed Covenant, stating the reasons for the revisions, must be submitted to the field education office when the mid-year evaluation report is handed in. serves to clarify expectations of both student and mentor, as well as the focus of the placement. is revisited at the beginning of the second term to see if any revisions are needed.

4. MENTORS

A mentor is a lay, ordered or ordained person serving in ministry who provides on-site guidance and support to placement students. In the normative context of change in the church and society, the mentor is a seasoned leader willing to venture with the student into unknown territory presented by new challenges and opportunities. Field placement mentors have developed finely tuned skills in pastoral ministry, theological reflection and spiritual discernment over many years of study, spiritual discipline and experience in ministry. The teacher as learner is a key principle in successful theological field education and so mentors recognize that they, too, are learning as they guide their students.

The role of the mentor is to assist students to reflect on their experiences of doing ministry. While the mentor may express compassion, he or she also needs to be unwilling to compromise. It is an opportunity for the student to reflect on the realities of life they are going to encounter in ministry. Mentors may wish to consult with their students regarding texts being currently used in their pastoral theology courses. 4.1 Responsibilities and Opportunities

Once an appropriate match has been found between a mentor and a student, and officially confirmed by the Director of Theological Field Education, a Site Covenant is signed and submitted to VST. (Appendices V and VII.)

The relationship between student and mentor is a collegial one in which they respect the fact that each is on a journey of following God’s call. The mentor offers the student support and feedback through a disciplined, educational process in which they reflect together on the challenges of ministry in the particular context in which they serve. They agree to adhere to the School’s policies outlined in Appendix XV. Mentors assist Vancouver School of Theology by providing written reports to meet the dates set out in the Important Dates list. The key component in the educational process by which the mentor endeavours to guide the student’s reflection is the regular weekly or biweekly “reflection” sessions they hold together. (See item 1 in the Site Covenant.) A sample process for a reflection session is provided in Appendix IX. September 2013

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4.2 Mentoring of students in TFE 1 Exploration and TFE 2 Studio with Leadership Studio involves: •

willingness to support goals of the Leadership Studio. (See Appendix II)

self-understanding as a learned and experienced guide willing to venture into unknown territory with a student for the purpose of mutual learning in the face of change

willingness to prompt strategic thinking about the ministry opportunity the student is exploring/pursuing

willingness to prompt on-going discernment and reflection about adaptive leadership

willingness to be consulted about assignments

willingness to be offer and discuss with student recommended resources relevant to ministerial leadership

willingness to develop, agree to, and remain faithful to terms of accountability in site covenant approved by the Director of Theological Field Education

willingness to make mid- and final year reports to the Director of Theological Field Education and Leadership Studio Instructor

4.3 Guidelines for TFE 2 Studio Final Year Written Reports: •

Review the terms of accountability with the student and communicate any concerns or observations to date and report any revised expectations or adjustments going forward

Review the proposal and comment on important learning to date and any specific goals going forward.

What have been the student’s strengths and growth areas in this term? How has she/he received and made use of your feedback?

What personal or professional issues does the student need to continue working on?

Any additional comments?

Is there any way in which Vancouver School of Theology faculty can be of assistance to you?

Is there anything you wish to communicate concerning the student’s readiness for ministry?

4.4 Mentoring of students in TFE 3 Practice includes: •

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collaboration with the student on the development of a Learning Covenant with clearly stated goals which fit the student’s needs, opportunities at the field site, and VST course requirements. (See “Important Dates”, page 2. See sample in Appendix VIII.) September 2013

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• •

regular meetings with the student for theological reflection, feedback and direction (one hour weekly or two hours bi-weekly). (See suggestions in Appendices IX, X, XI.) availability to students in urgent situations as needed

written assessments of the field education student in Denominational On-Site Learning Log and both mid- and final year evaluations. (Appendix VI.)

4.5 Guidelines for TFE 3 Practice mid-year reports:

The following questions and statements will help mentors prepare their written mid-year evaluations and assessments of the work of field placement students. • • • • • • • •

Describe the student’s relationship to the congregation/agency setting.

Describe the progress made on each of the goals in the Learning Covenant. Do you suggest any revisions? Please be specific. Describe the progress made in relationship to the denominational outcomes (Appendix VI).

Describe the nature of your reflection sessions and the agenda items typically covered. What have been the student’s strengths and growth areas in this term? How has she/he received and made use of your feedback? What personal or professional issues does the student need to continue working on? Any additional comments?

Is there any way in which Vancouver School of Theology faculty can be of assistance to you?

4.6 Guidelines for TFE 3 Practice end-of-year reports:

The following questions will help mentors prepare their written end-of-year evaluations of the work of field placement students. • •

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Describe the student’s progress in working on the goals in the Learning Covenant. In what ways was the learning covenant fulfilled?

Which tools of theological reflection were particularly helpful in your sessions (Scripture, stories from Scripture or literature, images or art, theological themes, culture, Christian tradition)? Please offer specific recommendations and suggestions for the student as he or she continues on in theological education and training for ministry in his/her denomination.

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• •

Describe the student’s general readiness for ministry. (You may wish to refer to Appendix XIV and the “Criteria for Recommendation Assessment.”) Any other comments?

5. STUDENTS

5.1 Responsibilities and Expectations In their first year, students will meet with the Director of Theological Field Education and PPL Professor in October/November to discuss their vocational goals for their three year program (three units) of field education.

In the second term (TFE 1 Exploration), they follow-up on assignments begun in PT 500 and explore possibilities for a ministry site and mentor which will fulfill their personal ministry vision. Their “Exploration Log” will record their progress toward this goal (Appendix 1). At the close of that term, when their choice of a ministry site and mentor has been approved by the Public Pastoral Leadership Professor and TFE Director, the latter will make a formal arrangement with the mentor and site. The student will complete the arrangements by obtaining a signed copy of the Site Covenant and adding his or her own signature.

In second year (TFE 2 Studio), students participate in the Leadership Studio Course PT 651 in which they discuss and prepare a learning covenant appropriate to the ministry site chosen and approved in their first year theological field education.

For third year (TFE 3 Practice) placements, students will meet with the Director of Theological Field Education in the spring term of the year prior to those placements, to discuss learning goals and possible site placements that might help them attain their vocational goals. In TFE 3 Practice placements, students are required to engage actively in ministry, whether congregational, institutional or community for 8 to 10 hours per week. (See Appendix VII) In all years students are expected to take one weekend off at study break and to have a Christmas break. Any other time away from the site must be negotiated with their field placement mentors. The time required to plan for other meetings, workshops and worship services should be included in time spent in the field placement work and must be negotiated with the mentor.

5.2 Student’s Responsibilities in Relation to the Mentor

In second and third years, the field placement mentor and student set a mutually agreeable time and place to meet for reflection sessions, either one hour weekly or two hours bi-weekly. In consultation with the mentor, the student draws up a formal

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Learning Covenant with clearly stated goals that are suitable to the context and tasks in ministry available at the site, that meet the School's requirements, and the student's personal goals. (See “A Sample Learning Covenant” in Appendix VIII). All students who are undertaking TFE 2 Studio or TFE 3 Practice are required to submit a draft Learning Covenant for review by the Field Education Office by the dates listed on page 2, “Important Dates”. The approved and signed Learning Covenant must be submitted by the date shown on the same page. Discussion with the mentor should include criteria regarding how the student's work will be evaluated, and the establishment of a procedure to follow in case conflict arises during placement at this site. During reflection sessions, students will debrief, analyze, strategize and set out action plans for achieving the goals in their Learning Covenant. (See Appendices X, XI, and XII which describe some approaches to theological reflection to use in these sessions.)

5.3 Student’s Responsibility in Relation to Evaluation

The second and third year student is required to submit a self-assessment report mid-way through the year (due on the first Monday of December) and all students submit a final self-assessment report at the end of the academic year (due on the first Monday of April). In second and third years the mentor is requested to submit a mid-year evaluation report on the student's work at the placement site (due on the first Monday of December), as well as an end-of-year evaluation report by the first Monday of April). All written reports are discussed with the other party before being submitted to the Director of Theological Field Education.

If the student does not agree with a report or any sections in it, the mentor must note that disagreement in the report and provide a brief comment regarding a plan for resolution.

5.4 Student’s Mid-Year Evaluation Report

The following questions and statements provide the student with a guideline as he/she prepares the written self-assessment report of his/her work in the field placement. The student is to provide a copy of this self-assessment to her/his mentor and discuss it during one of their reflection sessions. If the mentor disagrees with any part of the self-assessment, the student is to note the disagreement in the report and provide a brief comment regarding a plan for resolution. The mentor will sign the report to indicate that he/she has read the report and understood its content.

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Describe your relationship to the congregation/agency setting. Describe the progress made on each of your learning goals (explaining any changes) and what new learning emerged.

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• • • • 5.5

What have been your strengths and growth areas in this placement? What has been the most helpful in your learning process? What are the next steps you need to take to bring you closer to achieving your goals? What changes do you need to make in your Learning Covenant? (Give reasons.) Describe the nature of the reflection sessions and agenda items typically covered. Any additional comments?

Student’s Final Evaluation Report

The following questions provide the student with a guideline as he/she prepares the written self-assessment of her/his work in the field placement. The student is to provide a copy of this self-assessment to her/his mentor and discuss it during one of their reflection sessions. If the mentor disagrees with any part of the self-assessment, the student is to note the disagreement in the report and provide a brief comment regarding a plan for resolution. The mentor will sign the report to indicate that he/she has read and understood its content. • • • • • • • •

Did the field placement site meet your expectations? How did your relationship to it change and develop over the year? Describe the progress made on each of your learning goals. Indicate any changes that developed and why. Describe the nature of the reflection sessions and agenda items typically covered. What has been the most helpful to your growth in the learning process? What additional feedback do you need? In what ways has this field education experience contributed to your pastoral identity and vocational discernment? What personal or professional issues do you need to continue working on in your ongoing vocational preparation? What is your general readiness for ministry? (Refer to the “Criteria for Recommendation Assessment in Appendix XIV.) Any additional comments?

5.6 Theological reflection

Expressed very simply, we do theological reflection when we examine an event or other experience in the light of the question, "Where is God in this experience?" (See Appendices IX, X and XI.)

6. ASSESSMENT AND EVALUATION 6.1 General Information

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Evaluation involves a formal process of reflecting on the learning experience in order to make meaning of it. The student and mentor participate in a process that allows the

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student to reflect on how she or he has functioned in ministry in a given context. In turn, the experience contributes to the student’s on-going self-awareness and construction of a vocational identity. Goals attained and unfinished tasks are named during the evaluation process. Areas of growth and on-going challenges are also identified. If possible, please complete the evaluation process at the end of the final term with an exercise of intentional closure and leave-taking (perhaps in the context of the Sunday worship service).

Constructive feedback can empower mentors and students alike and can contribute to life-long learning, transformation and faithfulness. Feedback must be constructive, respectful, honest and open. In this Handbook we provide some suggestions and models for such constructive feedback and communication. Students and mentors must deal with issues of concern as they arise, so they can be resolved as soon as possible. Feedback on any topic that is not included in the Learning Covenant must be negotiated with the student before it is offered. Refer to Appendix XIII.

6.2 Evaluation Process and Written Reports

Guidelines and process for student evaluation are outlined in this Handbook. Written reports contain information, comments or concerns that have been discussed with the student during scheduled meetings. Reports should not include issues or concerns that have not been raised already with the student.

We recommend that each party prepare a draft of their report that they circulate to each other, and then, if necessary, amend. All reports are signed to indicate that they have been read, understood and discussed. “Signing-off” on a report indicates that both parties have reached consensus. It does not indicate that the signing parties agree 100% with the report, but that they can live with the report's conclusions. Students and mentors must report any disagreements that arise during the evaluation process. You may need to schedule additional meetings to resolve any disagreements or conflicts. In the event of a disagreement, evaluation reports must include a signed addendum outlining the nature of the disagreement, the process followed to date and steps planned to resolve the disagreement. In addition to scheduled meetings with mentors, the Director of Theological Field Education is available to students and mentors for consultation and conflict resolution. (604-822-9035 or at fieldeducation@vst.edu)

The TFE Director will review the student’s mid-year and end-of-term reports (and participation in integrative seminars where applicable). The Director will report completion or non-completion of TFE Units to the registrar’s office. It is greatly appreciated by VST and students when mentors write their reports in time for the students to meet all due dates. (Students are responsible for at least submitting a draft of their reports to the field education office by the due date.) Please note due dates for mid and end of year reports listed in the Important Dates List. Page 18

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APPENDIX I: TFE 1 EXPLORATION Leadership Studio Proposal (PT651 & 652) Student Information Name

Program

Intended completion:

Learning Site Mentor

Project Title

E-Mail Address

Attached Documents: Attached to this cover I submit for approval: ___ ___ ___ ___ ___

TFE1 – Exploration Log Summary site analysis (3-4 pages) power point or other visual as presented (condense visuals to fewest pages possible) written proposal (1-2 pages) learning goals (1 page)

TFE1-Exploration Log (continue on separate page if necessary) Name of Contact

Contact Info

Nature of Conversation

Follow-up

Date

Total Number of Hours of Exploration logged: ________of maximum of 40hrs

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Site Analysis Guidelines In order to be effective in a field education placement, it is critical to understand from the outset the context and processes which have shaped the setting. Write a brief (3-4) page description of your site taking into account the following questions: Context

1.

• • •

Describe the neighbourhood and the larger context in which the church/agency is situated. Who are the people involved in the church/agency and in the surrounding neighbourhood? Describe the diversity of members/constituents: age, ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic factors, etc. What is the history of the church/agency and how does the history affect the ministry/service?

Identity:

2.

• • •

What are the professed beliefs/theological orientation; mission/goals? What is the ethos of the church/agency? What metaphors do they use to describe who they are?

Task:

3.

• • •

What does the church/agency do? What are the work definitions of clergy, staff, volunteers, members? What are the programs of the church/agency?

Organizational Characteristics

4.

• • • •

What are the structures of governance? How are the tasks of the church/agency carried out? How are decisions made; information shared; funds secured to operate? What are the resources for the church/agency? What do they lack?

Methods for Analysis include: • • • • • •

direct observation; interviewing – staff, constituency, Teaching Parish/Agency Committee; small groups; researching history and tradition and a time line of events, issues, personalities, conflicts, celebrations; documents; census data/local history, newspapers; questionnaires and surveys; physical setting.

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Visual Presentation Guidelines The seven minute visual presentation artfully and passionately communicates to peers and instructors: a. b. c. d. e. f. g. h.

Why this situation presents a true ministry opportunity What I propose to do With whom I propose to do it Why this project fits this moment and these people (including myself) That it is feasible That it could be effective and how How it is faithful to God’s call in this time What feedback I most want from this presentation

The presentation is due immediately following reading week of the spring semester prior to the academic year in which you are applying for the Studio (PT651&652). Incomplete presentations (without visuals) are not acceptable and you may instead apply the following year. Contact the Director of Theological Field Education before spring reading week to request to make a presentation. Date of presentations is posted before Christmas Break.

Strategic Leadership Project Proposal Guidelines Based on feed-back from the oral presentation, prepare a 1-2 page written proposal for your project addressing these points: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

In which public or pastoral ministry setting will this leadership project be located? Who will be involved? Who are your team and what are their roles? What resources are required and have they been secured? How will you gauge success? What is the projected impact of this ministry? What is the projected span of this ministry? If longer than your commitment, are there plans for its continuity?

Learning Goals In consultation with mentor and Theological Field Education Director, prepare a one-page document listing five initial learning goals related to the Studio outcomes which along with others which may arise in the Studio and on site, will form basis for reflection and evaluation in mid-term and final reports.

•

Knowledge and practice in fundamental leadership skills such as listening, storytelling, negotiation and assessment of context and people

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Essential leadership functions including recruitment, development and leadership of a team, the ability to develop and deliver effective presentations, the ability to make tough choices and to assess the relationship of their own ambition to a particular project The critical self-knowledge, emotional and spiritual maturity necessary for effective leadership, including reflection upon their exhibition of key character attributes such as authenticity, integrity, courage and service Ability to conduct contextual/critical analysis to inform/guide exercise of strategic leadership Ability to appropriately communicate theological insights and wisdom across sectors in collaborative pastoral and public settings Ability to work collaboratively and exercise conflict-management effectively Knowledge of ecclesial and social policy and governance sufficient to exercise cross-sectoral leadership Ability to work in a team to plan, problem-solve, implement and evaluate progress toward a particular goal or project An ability to articulate and follow an ethical and theological framework for decision-making and action

Signature I have completed and attached five sections of the proposal and understand that I may apply for the Leadership Studio PT650&651 using Leadership Studio Application when my proposal has been approved. Name (printed) Signature Date

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APPENDIX II: PT651/652 LEADERSHIP STUDIO COURSE DESCRIPTION Pastoral and Public Leadership Studio

Course Description

Fall and Spring terms (6 units)

Studio Leader: Rev. Dr. Keith Howard Fall 2013 to Spring 2014 (6 credits) Theologically trained professionals serving congregational or social ministries, agencies, organizations, and other institutions are continually presented with a changing context and the need for their organizations to respond. One of the critical leadership challenges is to identify opportunities which are truly strategic and then to assist the organization to embrace the occasion. This complex skill set requires an ability to read, interpret and move in the direction of life in very concrete ways in widely diverse settings. The Studio provides an opportunity for those preparing for pastoral and public leadership to combine instruction in leadership theory and theology with on-the-ground experience of discerning and developing leadership challenges and ministry opportunities. Within a collaborative, creative, experiential and educational environment, students (and mentors) work to discern and develop strategic leadership capabilities within a particular community and/or congregation. A broad range of partners in church and society may become involved in the project, thus presenting learning opportunities for inter-disciplinary collaboration. In all cases, we will understand the leadership opportunity to be one of serving the community in its desire to experience the flourishing of life in a specific context. Studio mentors and instructors assist participants to research, prepare, exercise and evaluate their leadership in the context in which they are situated. In conversation with the Studio leader, students select their learning sites and mentors on the basis of the criteria related to promise of learning opportunity for leadership. Professionals bring a leadership challenge/opportunity from their own context (identified in application to register for course credit/audit).

In the Studio students should expect to: • • • • •

Be introduced to key concepts in pastoral and public leadership and mentored and coached in various practices of leadership Practice effective team work Collaborate with partners to plan and implement desired outcomes Reflect critically and constructively on all aspects of the team’s work: inter-personal relationships, analysis, planning, consulting, delivery, and evaluation of effectiveness of leadership offered Reflect theologically and spiritually on the exercise of leadership in context.

Students will demonstrate these competencies: • •

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• • • • • • •

velop and deliver effective presentations, the ability to make tough choices and to assess the relationship of their own ambition to a particular project The critical self-awareness, emotional and spiritual maturity necessary for effective leadership, including reflection upon their exhibition of key character attributes such as authenticity, integrity, courage and service Ability to conduct contextual/critical analysis to inform/guide leadership Ability to appropriately and effectively communicate theological insights and wisdom across sectors in collaborative pastoral and public settings Ability to work collaboratively and exercise conflict-management effectively Knowledge of ecclesial and social policy and governance sufficient to exercise cross-sectoral leadership Ability to reflect critically on the nature and nurture of effective teams including enabling a team to plan, problem-solve, implement and evaluate progress toward a particular goal or project An ability to articulate and follow an ethical and theological framework for decision-making and action

Course Organization Students meet together in a schedule of workshops and bi-weekly classes throughout both the first and second term (Sept through April) with the studio leader. A variety of teaching methods are utilized to offer instruction and guide reflection on the experiential learning at the heart of this course. On-line access to the instructor supplements in-class instruction and is critical to effective engagement with other studio participants.

Relationship to Theological Field Education (TFE) The Studio fulfills TFE2-Studio (two units TFE hours, integration and supervision). Students must consult with the Directors of TFE and Denominational Formation regarding their intended learning site.

Prerequisites Students must apply to register for the Studio by successfully completing a Leadership Studio Proposal (see separate document). In summary, If student, prerequisites include all: OR If professional, prerequisites include right-hand column only: ___ PT500 or transfer credit ___ PT551 (or registered) ___ TFE1-Exploration

___ 7 minute visual proposal presented ___ written Leadership Studio Proposal approved and signed ___ Mentor and Site Covenant approved and signed

Studio Work: (approximately 160-180 hours per term= 30hrs instruction; 30hrs preparation; 100-120 hrs in project) In addition to spending 10 – 12 hours on your leadership project each week, you will be expected to: 1. Be physically, emotionally, spiritually and intellectually present for the studio session and other studio participants.

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2.

In the week during which the studio gathers write a blog (between 350-500 words) in response to the previous class (by Thursday). 3. Write an analytical reflective piece (400-750 words) each week (by Sunday; 4 pm) in response to the required readings (range between 50 – 75 pages per week). 4. Present, twice per term, some aspect of a leadership situation in which you are involved. 5. Present, once per term, a 10-15 minute reflection on a leadership virtue. 6. Present, once per term, as part of a group or team, 45 minutes of input on an important leadership practice or function. 7. Write a 1500 word integrative paper or other project agreed upon with the Studio leadership. 8. Account by a log for 100-120 hrs/term working on the ministry project 9. Attend at 80% of the Studio sessions and give notice of and reason for absence 10. Be responsible for their accountability to the mentor and instructor for terms established in the approved Site and Mentor Covenant

Readings Include: Heiftez, Ron, Leadership without Easy Answers Linsky, Marty, Leadership on the Line: Staying Alive Through the Dangers of Leading, and Grashow, Alexander, The Practice of Adaptive Leadership: Tools and Tactics for Changing your Organization and the World Daloz Parks, Sharon, Leadership Can Be Taught Williams, Dean, Real Leadership: Helping People and Organizations Face their Toughest Challenges

Course syllabus will include bibliography; additional assigned readings will be on-going to meet student needs. Those who participate in the Vancouver School of Theology's Studio for Strategic Leadership form a crucible where the skills and practices of strategic leadership can be taught, tested and refined within an intentional and creative collaborative environment. The term "Studio" evokes the individuality and creativity of artistic practice within a communal enterprise. The Studio aims to engage the leader as a whole person in interaction with traditional and developing leadership practices .

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APPENDIX III: LEADERSHIP STUDIO FAQ Those who participate in the Vancouver School of Theology's Studio for Strategic Leadership form a crucible where the skills and practices of strategic leadership can be taught, tested and refined within an intentional and creative collaborative environment. The term "Studio" evokes the individuality and creativity of artistic practice within a communal enterprise. The Studio aims to engage the leader as a whole person in interaction with traditional and developing leadership practices. Who can apply to be in the Leadership Studio? • •

students preparing for public and pastoral leadership who have completed the prerequisites professionals in public and pastoral leadership

Does everyone who applies get in? No. All eligible students who need the Studio to graduate at the end of the current academic year will be admitted upon approval of their completed application. Other registrants will be admitted according to the strength of their proposal and space available. What are the academic prerequisites for students?

PT500 or equivalent from another institution (ask Registrar for assessment of equivalencies) Are there other requirements for admission to the Studio?

Yes, you must have your completed application approved by the Director of Theological Field Education and Studio Instructor before you can register for the Studio. Should I be in the Studio in the middle of my program or at the end?

The Studio is designed to accompany the first full year of theological field education, following TFE1 Exploration. Those with very little or no previous leadership experience, those who did not successfully complete TFE1 Exploration, and those who did not have their proposal for the Studio approved will be encouraged to register for the Studio in their second full year of TFE instead. What happens to my TFE if I delay registering for the Studio until my final year?

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nity with whom you have had only a short-term relationship, you are strongly encouraged to take the Studio as early in the program as you are able.

If, however you do not feel comfortable enough or sufficiently well established in the community to build your team and offer leadership to the project you have identified, it is better to delay registering for the Studio until you do. Instead, enrol in TFE3 – Practice. What if I haven’t completed TFE1-Exploration?

If you were unsuccessful in your most recent TFE1 Leadership Studio proposal, or did not do TFE1 for any reason, you may be able to meet the expectations of TFE1 Exploration sufficiently through making your application to the Leadership Studio. Consult with the Director of Theological Field Education for direction on whether you are ready to make your application. Can I do only one term of the Studio instead of both? No. The Studio is an eight-month program.

If my leadership project is over or not yet started, can I do the Studio anyway? No. The Studio requires concurrent practice of leadership in the form of TFE2- Studio (1012 hours a week) or concurrent professional practice of leadership. Can I do the Studio concurrently with CPE?

No. Most CPE programs are full-time and are guided by their own learning objectives.

However, clinical settings for the Studio are acceptable and appropriate if your application, including your proposal, site covenant and mentor, has been approved by the Director of Theological Field Education. What if I have leadership experience and already consider myself a competent leader?

If you are an experienced leader you will be the first to acknowledge that there is no such thing as having achieved perfection in leadership or even in being beyond the need for raising the bar on your own capacity for leading adaptive change. The Studio is designed to meet you where you are and take you the next step. As someone leading from within with the capacity for skilful, reflective and effective leadership in a context of significant organizational and cultural change, you will identify your own need for growth and use the Studio to develop your leadership. Will I learn anything?

Unlike a course where a Professor brings material to you, in the Studio YOU bring material to the instructor who in turn uses it to give back to you for your own learning. The depth and extent of your learning is in direct proportion to what you bring into the Studio. Only September 2013

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the artist who brings appropriate materials and fresh desires to the Studio creates a work of art, or at least a work in progress! What if I don’t see myself as a leader or don’t believe ministers should be leaders?

Leadership is not a job description or a personality trait; it is an activity. It is a term we use to describe a way of offering yourself to people facing into what matters most to them with a desire to close the gap between their aspirations and their reality. Pastoral and public ministry by definition involves offering leadership to individuals and communities living in the gap between their current situation and the promise of fullness of life. If you don’t feel called to working this gap, the Studio is not for you. It might also be that ministry is not for you at this time. What do I need to do to apply? • • •

meet requirements for registering for VST credit courses (see VST website or contact Registrar) have your application approved by the Director of Field Education prior to the first day of class (see application in Theological Field Education Handbook on-line) pay the course fee

Where do I find the application? •

the Studio Application is on the VST website in the Theological Field Education Handbook on-line.

How much does it cost? •

the Studio comprises two 3.0 credit courses at VST. Cost of 3.0 credits is posted on the VST website.

Where do I exercise leadership during my Studio year?

TFE1 - Exploration gives you opportunity to locate a site, project and mentor for your work in the Studio. See the Theological Field Education Handbook for guidelines. If you are a professional in active public or pastoral leadership who has not completed TFE1Exploration, you will use your place of ministry/work as a site and will identify a project and mentor according to the guidelines on the application. What is expected of the mentor/coach?

The single most important expectation of the mentor/coach is that s/he understands and is committed to the goals of the Leadership Studio. If you and the Theological Field Education Director are confident of this, ask the mentor to fill out the appropriate documentation (see TFE Handbook) which outlines further related expectations and include this in your application. Page 28

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Where and when is the Studio held? The Studio is held at VST for three hours on Monday afternoons eight times each term (approximately every second week) September through April. What do we do each week?

In the Studio we pledge each week to engage • • • • • •

The God who calls and sustains us in ministry The world in which we offer service The vehicle through which we offer ministry Each other as those who seek to serve faithfully, effectively & with joy The promises and challenges of our heart, soul and spirit The tradecraft of leadership

What is the workload?

In addition to spending 10 – 12 hours on your leadership project each week, you will be expected to: • Be physically, emotionally, spiritually and intellectually present for the studio session and other studio participants. • In the week during which the studio gathers write a blog (between 350-500 words) in response to the previous class (by Thursday). • Write an analytical reflective piece (400-750 words) each week (by Sunday; 4 pm) in response to the required readings (range between 50 – 75 pages per week). • Present, twice per term, some aspect of a leadership situation in which you are involved. • Present, once per term, a 10-15 minute reflection on a leadership virtue. • Present, once per term, as part of a group or team, 45 minutes of input on an important leadership practice or function. • Write a 1500 word integrative paper or other project agreed upon with the Studio leadership. • Account by a log for 100-120 hrs/term working on the ministry project • Attend at 80% of the Studio sessions and give notice of and reason for absence

The workload however, rests almost entirely with you. You work as hard as you choose and your increased competencies for leadership will be reflective of your efforts. Ask artists about their workload. What can I expect during each Studio session?

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Each session varies and is critically dependent upon what each participant brings to the session; however, that said, the basic framework of each session is as follows. 1:55 pm 2:00 pm 2:05 pm 2:10 pm 2:15 pm 2:25 pm 3:40 pm 3:45 pm 4:10 pm 4:47 pm 4:50 pm

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Gathering Greeting & Re-collection of Purpose Scriptural Reflection + Prayer Clarification of Goals for the day’s Studio session Mutual Sharing of Inspiration/Resource Input + Engagement – Studio leadership and/or guest practitioner Break Presentation of a leadership virtue Presentation & Engagement of a leadership issue by Studio members (2 @ 15 minutes each) Review of tasks & assignments Commissioning

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APPENDIX IV: LEADERSHIP STUDIO APPLICATION Student Information Name

Program

Learning Site Mentor

Intended completion:

Project Focus

E-Mail Address

Prerequisite check list Please check to indicate that you have completed the pre-requisites: If Student, check all that apply: OR If Professional, check this column only: ___ PT500 or transfer credit ___ PT551 (or registered) ___ TFE1-Exploration

___ 7 minute visual proposal presented ___ written proposal approved and signed ___ site and mentor covenant approved and signed

Required Signatures Studio Instructor: My signature indicates that I have heard, read and approved this student’s completed proposal for the Leadership Studio Signature Date

Director of Theological Field Education: My signature indicates that I have read and approved this student’s completed site and mentor covenant Signature Date

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Registrar: This VST student is eligible to register for PT651&652 Signature Date

Acceptance Policy All eligible students who have completed the pre-requisites and intend to complete their program of study in the current academic year will be accepted into the Studio. All other students will be considered on the basis of their proposal and the space available.

Application Deadline: The deadline to register for the Studio is VST’s fall course registration deadline. Consult Registrar or website for date. Completed applications are required to register for the Studio. SUBMIT THIS REGISTRATION FORM TO THE VST REGISTRAR (with copies to signators)

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APPENDIX V: MENTOR AND SITE COVENANT Mentor Contact Information Name

Address

Learning Site

Relationship to Site/Project Phone numbers E-Mail Address

Cell

Work

Other

Mentor Contact Information The church is being called to radical renovation, re-tooling and repentance. The impact of this is far-reaching and particularly challenging for those who are called to exercise leadership. In previous eras of ministry, responsibilities were fairly clear, especially within a congregation context – worship, Christian education, pastoral care and some administration. While many of these tasks remain, people are now needed who can also help identify and pursue new ways of ministry and being church in a context where the only constant is change. In the context of change, a mentor is a wise and willing guide who practices reflectively the tradecraft of adaptive leadership and is willing to accompany an apprentice in unfamiliar territory. The Leadership Studio is designed to build capacity for strategic leadership among students apprenticing with mentors exercising public and pastoral leadership.

Expectations Mentor please check all that apply:

 willingness to support goals of the Leadership Studio (above).

 self-understanding as learned and experienced guide willing to venture into unknown territory with a student for the purpose of mutual learning in the face change

 willingess to prompt strategic thinking about the ministry opportunity the student is exploring/pursuing  willingess to prompt on-going discernment and reflection about adaptive leadership  willingness to be consulted about assignments

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terial leadership

 willingness to develop, agree to, and remain faithful to terms of accountability summarized below  willingness to make mid- and final year reports to the Director of Theological Field Education and Leadership Studio Instructor

 willingness to recognize the student as an apprentice to strategic leadership, not a volunteer or auxiliary staff available for general duties or programme support unrelated to the goals of the Leadership Studio

 willingness to attend at their convenience one Studio session between September and April in consultation with the Studio Instructor to reflect with the students on the leadership topic of the day

Terms of Accountability (student to write these on basis of mutual commitments discussed)

In addition to the commitment to meet for the equivalent of 12 hours per term, the student and mentor will remain accountable to one another as follows (attach separate page if necessary) example: keeping in regular contact with one another; extent of supervision, if any; understanding of scope of mentorship, areas for coaching etc.

Terms of Agreement and Signature General Terms 1. The student and the mentor agree to the terms of accountability in their proposal, including meeting regularly for the equivalent of 12 hours per term to deepen and sharpen learning from the adaptive leadership context and to reflect theologically on the student’s progress in attaining the goals, objectives and action plans listed in the Project Proposal. 2. The student and the mentor agree to prepare (a) a mid-year evaluation report due first Monday of December and (b) an end-of-year assessment and evaluation report due on last day of classes in spring term (consult academic calendar). 3. The student commits to spending ten to twelve hours per week in the placement includPage 34

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ing time spent in worship and reflection with their mentor.

4. Any reports prepared will be read and signed by all parties before the reports are submitted to the Director of Theological Field Education.

5. The mentor and site agree not to encourage or require the student to take on general duties or to staff existing programmes to fill a site-based need unrelated to the strategic leadership learning goals of the Studio within the twelve hour per week designated in the terms of agreement.

6. If any part of the teaching, learning or evaluation process breaks down, the Director of Theological Field Education must be notified immediately. Upon notification he or she will initiate a consultative process to resolve the differences or to terminate the theological field education placement agreement. 7. All harassment policies and ethical standards of practice of Vancouver School of Theology and of the appropriate denominational authority shall be adhered to at all times by all persons and sites involved in the theological field education programme.

8. The theological field placement site agrees to communicate all information that may affect this agreement or the student’s learning goals and strategic leadership project as soon as possible. Signatures following indicate agreement to the terms stated above. Student name (printed) Signature Date

Mentor name (printed) Signature Date

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Approval of Covenant:

Director of Theological Field Education Signature Date

Further Information on Theological Field Education and the Leadership Studio at VST is available in the Theological Field Education Handbook online Thank-you for your invaluable contribution to building the capacity of the next generation of leaders in pastoral and public ministry Those who participate in the Vancouver School of Theology's Studio for Strategic Leadership form a crucible where the skills and practices of strategic leadership can be taught, tested and refined within an intentional and creative collaborative environment. The term "Studio" evokes the individuality and creativity of artistic practice within a communal enterprise. The Studio aims to engage the leader as a whole person in interaction with traditional and developing leadership practices. Copies of this document to: Student Mentor Theological Field Education Director Studio Instructor

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APPENDIX VI: ON-SITE DENOMINATIONAL LEARNING OUTCOMES DENOMINATIONAL ON-SITE LEARNING OUTCOMES

The record of Denominational On-Site Learning Outcomes provides a means by which a student logs denominationally specified competencies demonstrated to a satisfactory level during their units. Students in Theological Field Education should integrate these denominational learning outcomes into their learning covenants. The Learning Outcome log is to be presented and discussed with the Director of Field Education after each unit of TFE. PDF copies of denominational on-site learning outcome logs are available on the website. Students are encouraged to keep an on-going assessment of their learning throughout their programme.

Mentors are invited to contribute narrative comments and are requested to assess a student’s progress on learning outcomes as provided by the student. Students are normally required to take all TFE units (or equivalent) and as many as necessary to successfully meet the learning outcomes. Students entering the Master of Divinity with professional ministry experience may have advance placement in the learning outcomes.

SEE UNITED CHURCH OF CANADA, ANGLICAN CHURCH OF CANADA AND PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH OF CANADA DENOMINATIONAL ON-SITE LEARNING OUTCOMES ON PAGES FOLLOWING.

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UNITED CHURCH EXPECTATIONS FOR FIELD EDUCATION AT VST Specific On-Site Learning Outcomes (Source: UC General Council 2009) • Demonstrate skills in education and teaching in such areas as: leadership facilitation, understanding of leader as educator, small group leadership, co-learning with others, intergenerational learning and worship • Demonstrate skills in reflecting theologically, critical analysis and ability to relate life experiences to the activity of God in our midst • Demonstrate theological understanding of and competency for designing and leading creative worship (including preaching) consistent with traditions and guidelines of the UCC • Nurture personal and professional relationships. • Embody the call to Diaconal Ministry of Education, Service and Pastoral Care OR an Ordained Ministry of Word, Sacrament and Pastoral Care • Be committed to the learning of the faith community. • Interpret the Bible and make it accessible to the community • Engage the community with a gospel vision to recognize and respond to needs beyond their own. • Engage with the church and the broader ecumenical and inter-faith community. • Bear witness of one’s faith for the encouragement of others. • Encourage discernment of the role of God, Jesus Christ and Spirit in the life of the community. • Actively participate in the life of the faith community. • Articulate and apply an ethical framework to personal decision making and action. • Enable the faith community to design and apply an ethical decision making process to community issues. • Participate in the ethical decision making of the wider community. • Communicate effectively. • Demonstrate cultural and intercultural sensitivity. • Lead worship consistent with traditions and guidelines of The United Church of Canada. • Design and facilitate processes for on-going pastoral care • Demonstrate pastoral care skills such as: basic listening and empathetic skills, ability to know when to refer and who to refer to by developing resources in the ministry team and the community, clarity of lines of accountability within a team. • Model effective leadership • Evaluate and enable the leadership gifts in the faith community. • Work in and with teams effectively. • Respond to and manage conflict constructively • Carry out administrative responsibilities

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ANGLICAN EXPECTATIONS FOR FIELD EDUCATION AT VST Field education is a concrete way to develop practical ministry skills, all of which lend themselves to the ability of Anglican students at VST to live faithfully into their future leadership roles. Those in ordered Anglican ministry provide, proclaim, preside and pardon. Those in lay ministry engage in activities closely connected to the same ends. The list below enumerates skills related to these categories, and it is expected that students engaged in field education will focus on them and demonstrate learning through practical application, subject to supervision and evaluation. The goals are to build on existing strengths, address identified growth areas and discover new capacities. PROVISION OF SERVICE TO CHURCH AND WORLD THROUGH THE ABILITY TO: • • • • • • • • • • •

Listen to people

Equip the ministry of the baptized Teach others how to pray

Understand the role of spiritual direction

Discern the gifts of others or help them discern these gifts for themselves Relate spirituality to the realities and crises of the world Counsel for referral

Visit the sick in hospital and home, administer Holy Communion and anoint Minister to the dying and bereaved

Articulate the church’s mission in the world and participate in and/or organize site events which engage that mission Converse with those of other faiths or no faith

PROCLAIM THE GOSPEL THROUGH THE ABILITY TO: •

• • • • •

Preach contextually and relate lections to contemporary life Preach in more than one style

Integrate theological reflection in sermons Use voice appropriately

Lead Bible study and other educational activities

Familiarize oneself with current educational resources for children, youth and adults

Articulate and use thoughtful methods of evangelism

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PRESIDE AT THE LITURGY AND ORGANIZATIONAL EVENTS THROUGH THE ABILITY TO: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Use the BAS, Occasional Celebrations and BCP with ease and competence and become familiar with Lutheran liturgies and authorized supplemental liturgical resources Use Common Praise and other music resources

Explain and employ the use of vestments and altar furnishings

Function effectively with worship planning committees and altar guilds Train and work with servers Teach about liturgy

Use voice in speaking and singing Pray with others spontaneously Officiate at funerals

Prepare candidates for baptism and couples for marriage

Lead and share leadership of committees and small groups Recruit, supervise and encourage volunteers Organize work efficiently

Manage time and energy by learning to delegate

Offer theological resources to stewardship programs and understand financial statements Use the Canons

PARDON, BOTH SACRAMENTALLY AND PASTORALLY, THROUGH THE ABILITY TO:

• •

Exercise a ministry of reconciliation and comprehend its sacramental nature Manage conflict

This is not meant to be an exhaustive check list but a way to focus what students need and what field education sites are able to provide in cooperation with VST.

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PRESBYTERIAN ON-SITE DENOMINATIONAL LEARNING OUTCOMES The TFE learning outcomes expected of Presbyterian students at VST will vary somewhat, depending upon the past experience of the individual student. We expect that the students will possess sufficient self-knowledge to be able to identify those areas in which s/he requires further training, knowledge and experience, share them with her/his on-site mentor and develop a learning covenant that will address those particular needs. Therefore there must be a degree of flexibility in creating a list of outcomes. What follows is a list of minimum outcomes to which other outcomes may be added depending upon the needs and goals of the student. These outcomes are specifically directed to students who are preparing for ordered ministry in the church. 1. Demonstrate the ability to lead worship, that gives glory to God, with dignity, confidence, clarity and audibility.

2. Demonstrate the ability to preach biblical sermons that give evidence of careful preparation, thoughtful exegesis, clarity of thought, and interpretation that effectively addresses the needs, wounds and struggles of people in today’s society. 3. Demonstrate the ability to celebrate the sacraments with dignity, confidence and liturgical presence.

4. Demonstrate the ability to integrate biblical knowledge with God’s call to mission in the world today, and to lead people in the practice of mission. 5. Gain experience in a variety of pastoral care settings: e.g. homes, hospitals, nursing homes, pre-funeral visits. 6. Accompany and observe her/his mentor during a pre-wedding interview.

7. Demonstrate the ability to chair/lead meetings after having opportunity to attend, observe and, if possible, lead on-site meetings of committees and session. 8. Demonstrate the ability to lead study/discussion groups in a way that encourages the contributions of all participants and goes deeply into the issues at hand. 9. Demonstrate the ability to talk about matters of faith and interact with children and youth in an age-appropriate manner.

10. Demonstrate good communication skills, both oral and written, and learn a variety of ways to communicate with parishioners and those outside the congregation.

Develop at least one good model of theological reflection that enables the student to look at issues and situations through the theological lens and discern what God might be doing in that situation.

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APPENDIX VII: SITE COVENANT FOR TFE 3 PRACTICE September 23, 2013 to April 2, 2014 Student:

Program: Address:

Telephone (Home): E-mail:

M. Div. (ordination

M. Div. (lay)

Telephone (Cell):

Field Site:

M.A.T.S. Postal Code

Postal Code

Telephone: Mentor:

Address: Telephone (Office): E-mail:

Telephone: (Cell):

Postal Code

General Terms 1. 2. 3. Page 42

The student and the mentor agree to meet for one hour weekly or two hours biweekly to reflect theologically on the student’s progress in attaining the goals, objectives and action plans listed in the Learning Covenant.

The student and the mentor agree to prepare (a) a mid-year evaluation report (due the first Monday of December, 2013) and (b) an end-of-year evaluation report (due the first Wednesday of April, 2014).

The student commits to spending eight to ten hours per week in the placement including time spent in worship and reflection with their mentor. September 2013

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4.

Any reports prepared will be read and signed by all parties before the reports are submitted to the Director of Theological Field Education.

6.

All harassment policies of Vancouver School of Theology and of the appropriate denominational authority shall be adhered to at all times by all persons and sites involved in the theological field education programme.

5.

7.

If any part of the teaching, learning or evaluation process breaks down, the Director of Theological Field Education must be notified immediately. Upon notification he or she will initiate a consultative process to resolve the differences or to terminate the field placement agreement. The field placement site agrees to communicate all information that may affect this agreement or the student’s Learning Covenant as soon as possible.

Signed:

Student

Date

Mentor

Date

(Legal) Representative of the congregation/parish/pastoral charge/institutional ministry

Date

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APPENDIX VIII: A SAMPLE LEARNING COVENANT General goals •

To complete the requirements of (TFE 3 Practice) with special attention to religious education, pastoral care and leading worship at (name of site), in consultation and collaboration with my mentor. To complete the requirements of (TFE 3 Practice) during the Fall Term 2013 and the Spring Term 2014

Goal 1: to gain experience in leading Bible studies

Objective: to design, plan and take primary leadership in an educational ministry event Action plan

1. Meet with the Christian Education Committee in October to discuss the possibility of a Lenten Bible study. We will discuss conducting a "needs assessment" asking such questions as "Does the congregation want a Lenten Bible study?" "What is the level of commitment to attend a Lenten Bible study?" "What are the burning issues that people are concerned about that might be addressed as topics in a Lenten Bible study?” 2. Meet in November with VST faculty members responsible for religious education for their input and advice. 3. Draw up a proposal and present it to my mentor and the Christian Education Committee in November.

4. Determine an evaluation process by January. Design an evaluation form that addresses (a) Bible study design and content, (b) teaching skills, (c) general comments about my effectiveness as a religious teacher (theology, teaching style and delivery) and (d) suggestions for my further development as a religious educator.

5. During January and February, prepare a teaching plan and an outline for each session. 6. During Lent, teach the Bible study.

7. Meet with my mentor after Lent to debrief the experience, review suggestions and offer ideas for “next steps” in my development as a religious educator.

Resources • • • •

Faculty responsible for educational ministry at the School

Resources on Bible study methods such as Thomas Groome’s “shared Christian praxis” approach to Bible study or Walter Wink's “Transforming Bible Study” Denominational resources for Lent and Lenten studies The Christian Education Committee

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Goal 2: to develop skills in leading public worship with children Objective: to gain experience by leading “The Children's Time” during worship Action plan

1. Discuss the idea with my mentor.

2. Meet with the worship planning team and worship committee to discuss the possibility of leading “The Children's Time” every other week during October and November. 3. Meet with the Sunday school teachers in September. Ask if they might design two sessions in which they would teach me how to teach children and lead them in worship. These sessions would include resources they use, for example, how to teach Sunday school children, teaching tools, storytelling techniques, etc. 4. Attend the two teaching sessions in October.

5. Lead "The Children's Time" every other week in October and November (at least four occasions). 6. Meet with the Sunday school teachers after each occasion to debrief and receive feedback. 7. Share what I have learned about working with children in worship with my mentor.

Resources • • • • •

The faculty who teach religious education and liturgical studies at the School Sunday school teachers Resources on storytelling, teaching children and children in worship found in the School’s library The Christian Education committee The Worship Committee My mentor

Goal 3: to learn how to make pastoral visits Objective: to attend pastoral visits as an observer and to make at least one pastoral visit on my own

Action plan

1. Accompany my mentor on at least two pastoral visits in September and early October, one to a hospital, the other to a home, and write a verbatim on each of these visits. 2. Discuss the verbatim during a reflection session with my mentor following these visits.

3. Conduct one pastoral visit on my own and provide a verbatim regarding that visit to my mentor.

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Resources • • • •

My mentor

Faculty with experience in pastoral care Print resources regarding pastoral care

The pastoral care team of the congregation

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APPENDIX IX: SAMPLE PROCESS FOR A REFLECTION SESSION

(Source: Pacific School of Religion Field Education Manual 2009-2011.)

1. Presentation of agenda for the session that has been prepared by the student. Issues that the mentor might want to discuss may be added.

2. Student describes the first issue, situation, concern that prompted the need for reflection. 2.1 Data

Student presents the data. The focus is on getting an accurate picture of the event or situation. Mentor asks for clarification about what took place or what prompted concern; what role the student played; who said and did what; what were the circumstances surrounding the event or situation.

2.2 Analysis of Dynamics

Personal: what were the feelings involved? What do you think are the relational dynamics, conflicts, confusions? What are the expectations? What did you hope for yourself in this situation? How did your hopes affect your sense of what was expected of you? How do you think the others involved were affected?

Social: What is the larger community context in which this situation arises? What are the power dynamics? What values and world views are being expressed? Who will be affected by what happens? Are they part of the decision making? What are the historical & structural relationships?

2.3 Theological Issues

What faith issues come out of the situation or event? Were there conflicts about belief and the meanings attributed to the situation? What theological questions were raised for you? What resources from the Bible/sacred text and your faith tradition may give insight into this situation?

2.4 Interpretation

What is your interpretation of the situation now? What would you change? What would that require? What do you see as alternatives? Do you have greater clarity about your role, needed skills, others? How does your theological insight inform and guide you in this situation? Do you have new insights about God, self, human nature, church, the world, sin, etc.?

2.5 Next Steps

What is your next step? What resources do you need? What faith questions and responses are called forth? What will you do about them?

(Portions of the above are excerpted from Pastoral Supervision by Kenneth Pohly, The Institute of Religion, Texas Medical Center, Houston, pp 69 - 70.)

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REMINDER: Learning objectives stated in the learning/serving covenant should be addressed regularly during the reflection sessions. If they are not, reassessment of the learning objectives needs to be undertaken.

REPORTING FOR REFLECTION SESSIONS

Methods for the student’s reporting for reflection sessions are included in this section. Some written reporting during the semester is valuable. The student should come to a session having thought about what she/he wants to discuss and have some plan for presenting data. The following are suggested written formats for reporting: 1. Social Analysis

2. A Critical Incident in Ministry 3. Verbatim Report

An in-depth description of each format follows. 1. Social Analysis

When you begin working in an agency or congregation research and observation about values, history, issues, resources and structures are helpful. Congregations:

Prepare a report for your reflection session on your observations of congregational life. The following are questions to consider: 1 • • • • • • • • •

What are the major theological beliefs of this congregation? What is the larger context in which this community exists?

Is the congregation “like or unlike” the surrounding community?

How would you describe the culture and identity of the congregation?

What are the formal and informal programs that are the most important to the congregants? Who makes up the congregation?

How would they describe their community to outsiders?

How does the community make decisions - formal and informal processes and leadership? What is the budget? How does it get created?

1See Studying Congregations, eds, Nancy T. Ammerman, Jackson W. Carroll, Carl S. Dudley, & William McKinney, Abingdon, 1998, for detailed congregational analysis. The authors provide information on how to assess the theological perspectives of the congregation; the larger context in which the congregation exists; its culture and identity; the processes by which the congregation takes action; and the resources it has. The book provides a much more extensive resource if you would like to do further research.

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Agencies/Organizations Prepare a report for your reflection sessions on your observations of the agency or organization. The following are questions to consider: • • • • • • •

What are the agency’s basic beliefs and primary values?

How do the people who work here understand the purpose of their work? Describe the situations/issues that inform the work. Describe the agency’s culture and identity.

What is the agency’s history and structure?

How are decisions made: formal and informal?

What is the budget? How is money generated for the agency?

2. Critical Incident in Ministry Format

Describe the most critical incident in your ministry during the past two to four weeks. The assignment assumes no a priori criteria for what is considered critical; rather it encourages students to allow themselves the fullest latitude in recalling the event which, in whatever way it is important, seems to typify their experiences. A critical incident can be a personal involvement that may have caused anxiety, or it may be an event that was exceptionally gratifying. In any case, it should be some experience that can be marked as the “high point” or the “low point” of the two to four week period. Attempt to cover as many of the following areas as possible. • • • • •

Describe the event, including critical verbal and non-verbal communication involved and your response. Describe any emotions you perceived in others.

Describe your personal feelings about the situation.

If it is a “low point,” state the problem as you see it; if it is a “high point,” state why it is so. If it is a “low point,” list some other ways you might have responded or handled the situation; if a high point state, any new insights or growth you perceive in the situation.

Address the question, “How do I understand or make sense of this incident theologically?”

3. Verbatim Report Format

As a tool for the discovery of one’s leadership style and one’s strengths and weaknesses, the verbatim focuses on one specific concrete example of experience. It indicates to the student and to the mentor what the student did, not what she/he would like to have done. It allows for clarification of the experience, identification of significant moments in the relationship, presentation of alternatives and integration of theological, social, September 2013

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spiritual, etc. perspectives. (Use 2/3 width of page for the verbatim, saving the righthand 1/3 for mentor’s responses.) A. Introduction 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Time Place Brief description of the person (confidentiality should be considered) Relationship to the person Context of the conversation (what you thought of and felt about the person and her/his situation before this conversation) 6. Other details or circumstances which are relevant

B. Verbatim Record of Conversation

An exact record of the conversation: (make notes as soon as possible after meeting), including pauses, non-verbal communications, facial expressions, etc., insofar as they help to catch the “tone” of the experience. If the conversation is longer than can be conveniently reported, give highlights, being sure to indicate where breaks occur, and summarizing missing parts. The effort in this part is to be purely descriptive omitting explanation of why you did what you did. This effort calls for candor that will be, at times, difficult to achieve. Example: Key: S = student, D = Mrs. Doe; Number the responses to make analysis and evaluation with mentor easier. S1: D1: S2: D2:

How are you today, Mrs. Doe? Fine. How are you? We missed you in church Sunday. I missed being there (blushing) ...

Don’t try to “doctor” your report to make it look better. Rather, indicate changes you would make in the next step of your analysis.

C. Analysis and Evaluation

1. What took place? Where do you and the person now stand in your relationship?

2. Intention at beginning (discrepancy between intention and performance; shift in expectations, etc.)

3. An evaluation of your responses, trying to identify your dominant feelings during the conversation. This is not an invitation to probe the depths of your unconscious, but a simple effort to catch the feelings on or near the surface (i.e., is this a person who makes you feel angry, happy, frustrated, etc.?). What did you see as the person’s needs, and did your responses get at these needs? Are there any points that strike you as particularly significant now, any responses you

4. Would certainly want to omit or do differently (indicate by number - D2 - etc.)?

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5. What does this interaction reveal about the person and about you? What kind of person are you in this interaction?

D.

E.

6. 6. What effect did this interaction have on the person? How do you think she/he felt when it was over, and why? 7. Other details or circumstances which are relevant. Goals, Learning, and Future Involvement

1. What goals and plans will you have for your next meeting with this person?

2. What did you learn by studying this relationship and reporting on it (other person, yourself, own attitude to the other person)? Theological Analysis and Evaluation

1. What are the theological dynamics of the actual situation as you perceive them?

2. Does your normative understanding of your faith shed any light on the situation and future possibilities? 3. How has this report helped you to integrate your experience and theological understanding?

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APPENDIX X: A MODEL OF THEOLOGICAL REFLECTION BASED ON LIFE EXPERIENCE 1. Choose an experience from your life that has meaning and significance for you.

2. Describe the significance of the experience using the following questions as a guide. You do not need to answer all of the questions. They will guide you through the process of your reflection. • • • • • •

What makes this experience significant? What questions came to mind as you engaged in this experience? What feelings did you experience? What did you fear? What was the resultant effect of this experience on you? Is there an image or word that describes this time for you?

3. Broaden your consideration of the experience. • • •

Have any authors, preachers, friends or colleagues referred to a similar experience? How have they responded? What does my culture say about this kind of experience?

4. Begin to theologize. • • • • • •

Are there biblical motifs in this experience? Where is God in this experience? What biblical text, story or image comes to mind? What does my religious tradition (theologians, authors, denomination, etc.) say about this experience? What are the implications for ministry? How does this experience affect my view of God or of what it means to be a believer?

Examples of theological concepts that you might be able to identify in your experience may include: Kingdom ity

Conscience

Church

Grace

Redemption

Faith

Justice

Ministry

Renewal

Prophesy Page 52

Honesty

Incarnation

Sin

Reconciliation

Peace

Love

Covenant

Compassion

Discernment

Obedience

Creation

Sacrifice

Hope

Repentance

Service

Revelation

Vocation

Solidar-

Hospitality

Vindication

Balance

Judgment

Joy

Freedom

Celebration

Images of God

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APPENDIX XI: A MODEL OF THEOLOGICAL REFLECTION ON STUDENT EXPERIENCES AT FIELD PLACEMENT SITES 1. Name the experience. Consider recent conversations, events or incidents in which you have played a significant role.

Choose only one which challenged you or left you with lingering questions or concerns. This may have been either a positive or negative experience.

2. Reflect on the experience. Prepare a straightforward narrative using the following questions to guide you. • • • • • •

What happened? Who was involved? What role did you play? How did you react? How did others respond? Where did this experience leave you?

3. Analyze the experience. • • • • • •

What factors were at work in the situation? Name the emotions, assumptions, attitudes, social and cultural issues, power dynamics, etc. What was at stake for you? How did your interaction reflect your personal history, experience, convictions, values, faith, etc.? How did this experience challenge your assumptions, perceptions, values or beliefs? What did you learn about yourself? What insights have you gained from this experience? What questions or concerns remain with you?

4. Make some theological connections. Probe more deeply into the experience for insight using these questions: • • • •

What biblical stories, images or symbols come to mind? What theological ideas, concepts or authors come to mind? What insights gained from your theological studies are particularly relevant? How does this experience or situation relate to other faiths, cultures or traditions as you understand them?

5. Reflect on your learning. Identify some of the insights that emerge as you reflect on this experience using these questions: • • • • • •

How has your faith been enriched or challenged by this experience? What did you learn about God? What did you learn about the practice of ministry? What did you learn about your pastoral identity? Will you do anything differently as a result of this experience? How does your reflection on this experience relate to your learning goals?

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6. Conclude your theological reflection by suggesting themes or questions that invite a broader discussion of the theology and the practice of ministry.

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APPENDIX XII: THE THEOLOGICAL REFLECTION SPIRAL 1. Prepare: Identify and name your assumptions. This might include considering: • • • • •

Who are you in relation to your faith community? How do they perceive you? How do you locate yourself socially, economically, culturally? What questions do you carry into this experience? Why are they important to you?

2. Experience • • •

Assume the role of a participant or observer. What do you observe? What feelings, questions and concerns do you have?

3. Describe • • •

Record briefly what you saw, what you think was happening and why. Note what you already knew prior to the experience, i.e. your assumptions. What cultural, social, economic norms are operative in this experience?

4. Analyze • • • •

Describe what you really think was going on and why. Put the biblical images, themes, stories that have come to you into the conversation. What new insights emerge? What affirmation or challenge emerges from the biblical themes, stories or images?

5. Reconsider (Repenser in French means ‘to think again’). • • • •

Repenser – revisit your knowledge, assumptions, expressions of Christian faith and practice in the light of the previous steps. Identify the areas in which you are feeling challenged, confirmed, strengthened, disturbed by the process so far. Name any change that you think may be required of you and/or of others. How could such a change occur?

6. Practice •

Review the previous steps. Can you name any shift in your perception, faith perspective, ministry, mission or vision of the church? In turn, these identified shifts may provide new starting points for theological reflection on another experience. The spiral invokes an image of continuous theological reflection, change and learning.

Vancouver School of Theology

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APPENDIX XIII: HOW TO PROVIDE CONSTRUCTIVE FEEDBACK: Good feedback is an essential part of a praxis (action-reflection) approach to education. Constructive feedback can result in new approaches, directions and behavioural changes. Feedback identifies both our strengths and weaknesses, i.e. those areas that we need to develop in order to achieve greater competency. Feedback works best when it is offered within relationships of trust and respect. The Learning Covenant provides a framework in which constructive feedback may be offered in specific areas. Helpful feedback is descriptive, specific, appropriate, and requested, useful, timely, clear, accurate and directly related to the learning goals. Bearing in mind that it is essential to provide affirmation to the student, we also recognize that it is more difficult to give negative feedback. The following suggestions are provided to assist both supervisors and Ministry Reflection Group members to develop skill in that part of the task. •

Descriptive Be descriptive rather than judgmental. By describing your own reaction, you leave the other person free to use the feedback as they see fit. When you use judgmental language, the person receiving feedback is likely to become defensive and "shut down" (i.e. no further learning will take place during this exchange). Use "I" language when you offer feedback. By doing so, you acknowledge that you are speaking from your own perspective, observations, perceptions and feelings. Example: "When you use the word 'girl' or 'dear', I feel put down and not recognized as an adult woman."

Specific Be specific rather than general. Example: instead of saying, "You are very dominating", offer this statement "Just now, when we were deciding the issue, I felt you were not hearing what others were saying. I felt forced to accept your arguments."

Appropriate Feedback can be destructive when it serves only our own needs and fails to consider the needs of the person on the receiving end. What we offer must be supportive and responsible. Example: "Speaking in large groups is difficult for you, isn't it? I appreciated the effort it took for you to make your contribution to the Board meeting. Your comments were helpful. How can we help you to continue to build your confidence?"

Requested A Learning Covenant requests feedback on specific and clearly-stated learning goals. If a student wants additional feedback, he or she should ask for it. If a student wants to offer feedback, he or she should wait to be invited to contribute it or seek permission to offer feedback at the receiver's convenience. Feedback is most helpful when the receiver develops a framework in which constructive criticism might be offered. For example, a student may want to develop a worship feedback sheet listing the areas in which he or she wants feedback.

Useful Direct your feedback toward behaviour that the person can change. Most of us find it frustrating to be reminded of shortcomings over which we have no control. Example: "I enjoyed your Children's Time last Sunday, but I would have found it more helpful if you had used the microphone so that I could have heard the story, too." Note the use of "I" statements in this example.

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Timely Consider the timing of your feedback carefully. In general, the feedback is most helpful when offered sooner rather than later. It is not helpful to make a quick critical comment immediately following an observed behaviour unless you are prepared to spend time with the person receiving your feedback. Example: "I'd like to offer some feedback on the process you used in Bible study tonight. Do you have time to sit down and talk about it or can we set up a time soon?" Under normal circumstances, it is better to offer constructive feedback during a regularly scheduled meeting with the Mentor or Ministry Reflection Group. Clear Check to ensure that you are communicating clearly. One way of doing this is to have the receiver rephrase the feedback to see if it corresponds to what you intend to convey. Example: "Let me see if I understand what you are saying to me. Was it the specific word I used in a sermon that concerns you or the general message I was trying to convey?"

Accurate Check for accuracy. When feedback is offered in a group, both the giver and the receiver have an opportunity to check with others about the accuracy of the feedback. Is this person's impression shared by others? Example: "In this evaluation session, someone suggested that more printed resources would have been helpful. What do others think about this idea?" Connected to the Learning Covenant As much as possible, limit feedback to the goals stated in the Learning Covenant. Example: "I've been thinking about your goal to develop your pastoral skills. When John told us about his daughter's illness, it really seemed to throw you. Could we set aside some time at our next meeting of the Ministry Reflection Group and role-play the various pastoral responses to crises?"

A Model for Non-violent Communication: Marshall Rosenberg offers an excellent model of communication for constructive feedback. It provides the kind of feedback discussed in previous pages of this Guide. Rosenberg's model empowers people to exchange resources and resolve differences in non-aggressive ways. He advises us to speak honestly and responsibly about our own perceptions, feelings, values and desires, as well as listen to the perceptions, feelings, values and desires of others. Rosenberg's model focuses on four essential pieces of information: “When you said (or did) __________, I felt __________.”

“And because I value __________, I would like __________.”

Marshall Rosenberg is Director of the Center for Nonviolent Communication, P.O. Box 2662, Sherman, Texas.

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APPENDIX XIV: RECOMMENDATION OF READINESS FOR MINISTRY* The granting of the Recommendation, i.e., the certification that in the opinion of the members of the Faculty Council a M.Div. graduate of the School is suitable for the exercise of ordained ministry, is the end of a process that begins early in the student's programme of studies.

Students who are enrolled in a M.Div. programme shall submit an application for the Recommendation to the Coordinator of Academic Planning at the time of their admission to the School. The application shall include the student's written authorization for the gathering of the required information for the Recommendation. The criteria stated below should guide the Faculty and the Directors of Denominational Formation as they discuss a student's readiness for ministry throughout that student's entire programme. The primary criteria on which the decision to grant or to withhold the Recommendation are as follows: (A) Personal Characteristics, (B) Understanding and Practice of Ministry, and (C) Disqualifying Patterns of Behaviour. The numbered items under each heading are descriptive rather than prescriptive.

The criteria shall be shared with field educators and pastoral care supervisors to guide their assessment of students engaged in these dimensions of the School's programme. Students shall also receive a copy of the criteria as part of their orientation to the School's programme of studies. Programmatically, the criteria shall be explicitly used in the discussion of a student's progress during the Faculty Student Review Committee (FSRC) occurring at the end of each term of study. The key is the identification of patterns of behaviour rather than isolated incidents which of themselves are not necessarily indicative of a student's fundamental character and readiness for ministry. In the event that the Faculty Student Review Committee identifies any concerns that might affect the granting of a Recommendation at the time of a student's graduation, the student shall be referred to the Dean's Advisory Council, in consultation with the student's Director of Denominational Formation, for consideration of appropriate remediation or other action.

The granting of the Recommendation itself can only be made after certain evaluations are before the Faculty and Directors of Denominational Formation, e.g. the assessments of field educators, pastoral care supervisors, and the reports of the team assessing the student's ministry position paper. Consequently, the granting of the Recommendation will normally be considered in January of the student's final term. Students have the right to appeal the decision of the FSRC through the Appeal Committee of the Board of Governors. The decision of the Appeal Committee is final.

Any information obtained for the purposes of the Recommendation is confidential and is subject to the School's normal procedures regarding access to and discussion of confidential student information.

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Criteria for Recommendation Assessment A. Personal Characteristics 1. Faithfulness to Persons and Tasks: • • • • •

Respects and cares for others; values ideas and needs of others; practices adequate self-care; communicates honestly; demonstrates leadership abilities.

2. Personal Integrity: •

Demonstrates authenticity, sincerity and congruity in word and deed.

3. Personal Responsibility: • • • •

Maintains commitments, schedules, promises, inner convictions. Manages personal finances in a responsible way. Accepts responsibility for mistakes. Shows consistency in responses to persons and circumstances.

4. Flexibility: • • •

Adaptive to new situations and contexts. Copes well with the unexpected. Able to relate to a wide variety of people, e.g. age, gender, cultures, economic status, etc.

5. Gifts of Caring: • • • •

Sensitive to needs and feelings of other people. Encourages others to share their problems and to seek appropriate help and/or support. Helps others evaluate options and make their own decisions. Speaks the truth in love.

6. Self-Awareness: • • •

Aware of how others perceive her or him. Able to solicit honest feedback. Able to be self-critical.

B) Understanding and Practice of Ministry 1. Vocational Clarity: • • • •

Has a clear vocational identity and direction. Gives evidence of spiritual growth and development. Has a disciplined life of prayer. Able to articulate a well-grounded personal faith.

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• • • •

Demonstrates support for the mission of the church. Committed to public Ministry. Concerned about justice issues. Cares for the marginalized, the alienated and the needy.

3. Denominational Collegiality: • • •

Feels at home in her or his denomination and is familiar with the denomination's ethos and history. Can work within denominational structures. Is respectful of other traditions within her or his denomination and of other denominational and faith traditions.

4. Coping with Stress/Conflict/Life Crises: • • •

Understands conflict as an inevitable part of community life. Seeks fairness, openness and good communication in a conflict situation. Deals with stress in a balanced, healthy way. Is constructively supportive when others ask for help.

C) Disqualifying Patterns of Behaviour 1. Pursuit of Personal Advantage: • • •

Inappropriately manipulates institutional structures to meet personal needs. Tries to control situations to an inappropriate degree. Rejects others' needs or desires and aggressively pursues her or his own.

2. Inappropriate Self-Protective Behaviour: • • • •

Under stress becomes guarded and secretive or, alternatively, aggressive and bullying. Excessively self-interested. Inflexible about schedules, appointments, etc. Tends to shift blame to others or to circumstances.

3. Aggressive/Abusive Behaviour: • •

Attacks persons not issues. In intense situations consistently bursts with anger or withdraws in hostility.

*Recommendation for Readiness for Ministry Policy Statement adopted by Board of Governors May 2003

Faculty Student Review Committee (FSRC)

The progress of students in each of the various degree programmes is normally reviewed at the end of each term by the Faculty Student Review Committee (FSRC), which is chaired by the Dean and consists of all members of the Faculty and the Coordinator of Academic Planning. Time is allotted to consider each student, to celebrate gifts and to identify areas where support and challenge may be needed. Following each session of the Faculty Student Review Committee, students receive the record of the previous term’s evaluation. The Review Committee keeps all members of faculty informed about the progress of students and gives an overview of the needs of the student body. September 2013

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The Faculty Student Review Committee will use the Guidelines for Readiness for Ministry when discussing M.Div. students. If the FSRC identifies any concerns that might affect the granting of the Recommendation of Readiness for Ministry at the time of graduation, the student shall be referred to the Dean’s Advisory Council (DAC), and the student will be informed, in writing, of the concerns of the FSRC and any remediation or other action deemed necessary.

Purpose of FSRC • •

To flag and corporately track progress for students in all degree programmes To offer feedback to Directors of Denominational Formation regarding M.Div. students to assist them with their denominational reporting function and Readiness for Ministry statement

FSRC Guidelines • •

• • • • • •

Discussions regarding suitability for ministry shall be undertaken; faculty shall offer feedback on students’ progress and development; specific illustrations of concerns or affirmations should be provided where possible. To ensure accountability for effective and accurate representations of group perspective, the Directors of Denominational Formation are obliged to share with the Dean, the student’s Faculty Mentor and/or a faculty member from the same denomination a copy of any written report that is intended to represent the views of the FSRC. The student sees a draft of denominational reports for discussion before they are sent. Direct communication is encouraged --- where possible, faculty should raise concerns regarding academic issues directly with students about whom they are concerned prior to FSRC. Students who require further follow-up out of FSRC shall be referred to the Dean’s Advisory Council (DAC) for academic issues and to their Director of Denominational Formation for other issues. Follow-up out of FSRC shall be done by the Coordinator of Academic Planning and/or the Dean in matters of programme details. Cumulative record issues shall be dealt with by the Academic Planning Office. Minutes will be taken of the meeting and maintained by the office of the Dean.

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Theological Field Education Handbook

APPENDIX XV: APPLICABLE VST POLICIES Inclusivity Vancouver School of Theology is a multi--denominational school that encourages respect for the capabilities and contributions of everyone in the community. Students, faculty and staff are expected to treat each other with respect in order that everyone may learn from each other in a nurturing environment. The School admits qualified students to its programs of study regardless of age, color, gender, sexual orientation or preference, national or ethnic origin, or disability. The School does not discriminate on the basis of any of these in the administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, bursaries or other programmes administered by the School. Student responsibilities

Responsibility for course selection to fulfill the programme and degree requirements rests with the student. Students should consult with the appropriate degree Coordinator for advice and guidance. It is the student's responsibility, however, to read and understand the academic policies and procedures as they are set out in the Supplementary Calendar and Student Handbook, the Academic Calendar and in the course descriptions and syllabi. Additional information about regulations and due dates will be posted outside the Coordinator of Academic Planning's office during the term. Harassment

A Standing Committee of Faculty Council promotes awareness about what sexual harassment is, why it is not acceptable and what can be done about it. Currently eight to ten representatives of students, staff and faculty are designated as harassment advisors. These people are ready to respond to anyone who wishes to consult with them in confidence about a matter of harassment. Contact information for these people is available in the orientation package given to each student at the beginning of the academic year. If you have further questions, please contact them or contact your Director of Denominational Formation or the Associate Dean's office for names and contact information.

A formal Harassment Policy has been approved by the Board of Governors. This includes a detailed description of procedures, both informal and formal, when a complaint is made by anyone in the School. Copies are available in the School's Library.

September 2013

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Theological Field Education Student handbook 2013 2014