Sunday, April 22, 2007


I doubt anyone is really interested much in this--but I just sent an email to all the students in NEXT FALL's classes welcoming them to the course... The trhee main courses I wrote to so far have
...Local Church Education-- 27 students
...Church Leadership-- 27 students
...Teaching the Bible to Adults--8 students

More will sign up later but here is what I said to those already registered:

WELCOME to next Fall's Teaching the Bible to Adults class!!! You'll love this class...

It is a comfy group who DOES Bible study each week as well as learns HOW to do Bible studies for all adults--from college age through older adults.

I have a major passion for this class so you'’ll get "Drury at his best" I hope. The class includes both ministry majors and others--people who want to learn how to teach people for life change. The course is not really named right--we don't actually teach the Bible -- we teach PEOPLE... using the Bible in a way that inspires people to become Christ-like. It will be a wonderful Thursday evening and you'll look forward to it every week I bet.

We will first explore the stages of adult life and the characteristics of college students through older folk, then most of our time will focus on teaching methods...the ways people interact with the Bible that produces spiritual growth. We'll "learn by doing" often--actually having a Bible study as a way of learning how to lead one. If the course works well we will all come away having grown ourselves by our own study. The course assumes the Bible is not just a book that should be studied like one sticks a corpse on the table to do a post-mortem, but is a powerful living word of God that (if approached right) changes people. We'll learn how this process works and "how people change."

Usually we'll meet around one table (in the religion division conference room) but sometimes we'll move to a "home setting" to experience Bible study like small groups do in homes or residence halls. I have not finalized the syllabus yet but I'm thinking it would be cool if we could all lead several Bible studies ourselves--some in class and some in the residence halls or at church to practice our skills.

The group itself will become a Bible study group--of loving, caring people committed to our own growth--sort of a mentoring group under the leadership of the Holy Spirit. While we will care about the content of the Bible our primary focus is on how the Holy Spirit uses the Bible in a group to change people--to help us (and others) grow and develop. It will be exciting!

TO DO OVER SUMMER: Nothing particularly you need to do to prepare other than think of where you might hold several Bible studies yourself next year…in a church or on campus. Otherwise just get the texts before the first night of class.


WELCOME to the Fall semester’s Church Leadership class! This is a “senior course” (though occasionally a junior takes it) You must be accepted into the major to take it—so if you aren’t accepted by Sept 1 you’ll be kicked out of the course by Bonita the first week of school—so apply before you leave for summer if you’re not accepted yet!

Be prepared for:
1. Small group work—you pick two others to make a group of three and this group will be vital to your success in the course—in many ways your grade will depend on who you get with—you get to arrange your own group. Many assignments are group-created—you work together and can borrow each other’s work. If you see names above of people you want to be with—go ahead and arrange it before hand if you want to.
2. Problem based learning. Some of the work in the course is just like “real life” -- you only get a problem that you have to go and dig out the solution for. For instance sometimes we simply assign the group to make a plan for planting a church in Marion—and you have to figure out what kind of church, where to meet, how to budget for it, and even go check what renting places to meet cost. One of the groups this semester planned a church and it looks like one of our seniors will actually stay in Marion next year and plant the church they dreamed up. Another PBL assignment just gives you a bunch of terms written down in a church finances meeting for you to figure out what they mean. This PBL approach is “Like life” in that you have to find out where the answers are and how to check them to see if they are reliable.
3. Practicum learning. You’ll need a local church where you can interview a pastor, meet with the Treasurer, sit in on a board meeting, and other exposure to the administration of a church. Most churches won’t let you “lead” the church so this experience is more about the administration of a church than leading it.
4. Uncle Keith stuff. This is the course where I “tell it like it really is” the most. Most students like the stories as much as the hard content of this course. Here is where you get “the real truth” about what happens in the very-human organism of the church.
5. Units of study Here is what we usually deal with: (may change based on this semester’s final input—I’ve not opened that yet)
-People—how to recruit, motivate, inspire, remove people.
-Leadership theory—a unit on formal leadership theory and the “Strategetics” wisdom of leading and working with people.
-Conflict—managing it and resolving it—between others and yourself and the church or other ministers.
-Church finances—budgeting and church finances terms
-Leading meetings—the course is sometimes nicknamed CLPL—meaning Church Leadership and “Parliamentary Law” --we have a short unit on deliberative meetings.
(The following is the closing personal leadership unit)
-Personal finances—personal budgeting and ministers’ income taxes and housing.
-Integrity matters—avoiding sexual sin, financial ethics, honesty and ethics in the ministry.

See you next Fall!!!!

coach d
WELCOME to the Fall semester’s Local Church Education class! This is an awesome course—probably the best course I teach—so we’ll have a great time!

Be prepared for:
1. Lots of writing—a chapter a week for your “book.”
2. Small group work—you pick two others to make a group of three and this group will be vital to your success in the course—the better the group the better your paper and grade. If you see some names above you want t like up with now go ahead and set it up—you get to arrange your own group.
3. Student teaching. The practicum requires you to do “student teaching” in Sunday school—any age group, so be planning to attend Sunday school next semester and working with a “master teacher” who will let you teach twice and meet with you after to help you improve your teaching.

I think you’ll love this course. It is a major milestone for CM-YM students (along with Rec Management majors who have an alternative option). The group you establish often becomes so bonded that you will forget the rest of those in class—so pick your group carefully.
See you next Fall!!!!

coach d

I'll also be teaching the related practicums for these courses plus one breakout section of UNV180--we're trying a new thing this semester--a breakout section of all the Religion division students togeter with a REL prof as their breakout leader--I'm doing one of those sections on Friday afternoons... total load for the semester for me will be about 15 hours, better than this year!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

I'm getting a raise!

Our President held a meeting Friday and announced all the faculty at IWU were getting raises. Not cost-of-living raises (we already got that) but an actual bump in salary on top of that. In fact we're getting a bump for each of the next three years in a row beyond COLAs. We are all quite happy here of course. The biggest raises will go to full professors with earned Doctorates of course, and the rest will get smaller raises but that is consistent with the current effort to push all faculty to finish their "terminal degrees."

IWU is already a great place to teach but this will make it even nicer--especially for the younger profs with kids-who-need-sneakers. It is not just nice for those already teaching but it will make us vastly more attractive to professors from other schools to come here. Not that they'd come for the money--but a bigger salary will make it easier to move for sure.

Oh yeah--Jim Lo is returning too--he'll be the professor of Spiritual Formation--not because of the salary, he just loves us all!

When all this is finished a full professor might still be able to earn more money at a few CCCU schools--like schools in California where housing costs a tad more than Marion. In this town a family of four can still buy a four bedroom house for $80,000... merely a down payment in some of the towns where CCU Universities have higher salaries.

And to boot the new Pres has figured out how to do this without adding it on to tuition. So, the faculty is in a big KUDOs mood right now, and might remain there for the next three years. Best of all I bet more will jump in and finish their PhDs.

It comes at a nice time for us all. Faculty get crabby at the end of the year. We get tired of the grind, tired of other faculty, tired of meetings and even tired of [some] students. This is a nice boost--like a Christmas present in summer!

As for me I think I will wait until I retire to do my PhD. I've always admired George Failing who started a PhD in his late 60's..or was it 70s? When people were astonished and asked why, he replied "I want to learn." Interesting notion!

Friday, April 13, 2007

I like Rick Warren but this bugs me

I like Rick Warren a lot--he is one of my favorites. But one thing bugs me about Rick. He keeps sending me emails as if he is writing just to me when I know he has sent the email to the whole list.

Here is what I got this morning:
Just wanted you to know that the Holy Spirit led me to pray for you and your Easter services several times this past weekend. I also gathered a group of local pastors on Good Friday morning to pray for all the pastors we know and their services. I’d love you hear how your Easter went if you have time to write.
We’re in this together friend.
Rick Warren

This sort of mailing is too fake-ish for me. I'd rather Rick send something to his entire list saying something like "I have been thinking of the 10,000 pastors on my mailing list this morning and I picked several to pray for by name." Or some other way of admitting he was not writing a personal letter to me but this was a mass mailing to his whole list masking as a burden for me.

Oh well, I still like Rick Warren. I just wish he'd be more authentic in his mailings. Maybe I've hung around with young people too much.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Grading papers

OK my first papers (AKA "books") are turned in and I'm in grading mode now.

This is one of the most happy times of a professor's career. I hate grading yet at the same time I love seeing the work students do. I have the "Church Leadership" books now and am grading them. It was a course that I was not satisfied with this semester. It never seemed to take off. Last semester it was my best course. This semester it just didn't seem to get traction. BUT now that I am looking at "papers" I'm feeling much better. It is something like preaching--you leave the pulpit whipped thinking you blew it, then somebody tells you God really spoke through the sermon you thought you flubbed. That's how these books are--when I see them (well, most of them) I feel like I did in fact earn my keep this semester. Even when I know that some (many?) think it was "just an assignment" I know that they have gathered stuff that is vital to their future ministry and I'm delighted. The remainder of the semester in CLPL we're doing "the personal life of the minister" and that comes in a separate paper--a smaller one: finances, taxes, advice from grads about the first year in the church, and ethics and morals for ministers. It is an easy section for me and provides a "soft landing" in the course. Today I taught 5 students--all the rest were Wesleyen students off touring the Headquarters today. They missed the "Minister's taxes" lecture... poor students--I always put some tough questions on that on the final exam ;-)

The rest of my courses... maybe I will say asomething about them later. My fav this semester is LCE--it is an incredible collection of 38 people! Whew! Tell you later more.