Who We Are
PATHWAYS Theological Education is available to all people who want to deepen their knowledge and practice of the Christian life. As a theological education institute, our values of openness, justice-seeking, and diversity are woven throughout the curriculum. Our core program has three levels – foundations, application, and synthesis. Whether you chose a course for enrichment, continuing education. leadership development, or to fulfill academic requirements for a call to authorized ministry, you are welcome to participate in our courses.
PATHWAYS Theological Education maintains a robust and rigorous curriculum of more than three dozen courses. The curriculum is competency-based meaning that learning is oriented toward outcomes which enhance the life of the universal church. End of course evaluations assess learning associated with the course and provide insights into the mastery of competencies specified for each course. This is important for those seeking authorized ministry because competencies for courses reflect the Marks of Faithful and Effective Ministers in the United Church of Christ.
PATHWAYS courses are online and asynchronous—there are no set lectures or discussion times and the classroom is always open; however, there are weekly lessons and assignment deadlines. The Rev. Heidi Hulme, Pastor of Faith UCC in Davenport, Iowa, studied in the evenings after her children were in bed and in the mornings before they awoke. Course facilitator and Board member the Rev. Dr. Trish Greeves wrote from experience for the program’s 2015 Carpenter Grant application: “I am convinced that PATHWAYS does indeed offer an excellent, accessible, and affordable alternative for ministerial training.”
Course facilitators provide a wealth of experience in ministry in various settings: local church ministers, chaplains, pastoral counselors, administrators, and agency directors. All course facilitators hold graduate degrees related to their area of instruction and considerable experience. Many have held faculty positions in colleges, universities, and seminaries.
PATHWAYS lives out its Progressive Christianity statement through this diverse faculty as well as by recruiting participants from across the denomination. The statement reads in part, “We understand all theology to be contextual; that is, arising from a particular culture, time period, and experience. Thus our faith is expanded and tested as we interact with and learn from other sources and faiths…” A variety of voices in the online community better prepares each person for ministry wherever and however God may call them to serve.
Whether it’s for UCC History and Polity, Professional Ethics for Authorized Ministers, or courses in the Bible, theology, preaching, or supervised ministry, PATHWAYS will work with you to meet your educational goals.