The full-time phase of the Cor Deo training programme and ministry team in 2012 will last from mid-January until mid-June. For twenty weeks (with a two week break at Easter), the team study together in Chippenham, Wiltshire, on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. They also share ministry together during some of the four-day weekends.
What is the full-time Cor Deo training programme and ministry team?
A small group of men are invited to join the mentors for an intensive full-time programme of study and ministry.
- The optional first part of the programme is part-time, from September to January, involving assigned reading.
- The team then comes together for the full-time programme from January to June.
How does it work?
A mentored team: Cor Deo follows Jesus’ model of formation, study and ministry in the context of a mentored team.
Study together: The unique relational setting allows for intensive Bible study, as well as in-depth examination of theology, church history and contemporary issues. Cor Deo integrates theory with practice to develop participants in preaching, teaching, pastoral ministry, evangelism and leadership.
Minister together: Ministry is not just a subject to be studied, but an experience to be shared. Participating in Cor Deo allows participants to pursue their own ministry interests and join the mentors in their various ministries, building up the church in the UK and overseas.
Grow together: The combination of study and ministry in a team context allows for a major emphasis on spiritual formation. The small group setting is a uniquely conducive environment for life to life mentoring and personal spiritual growth.
Who is it for?
Central to Cor Deo is a conviction that God’s triune love – as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – gives us a wonderful model for human relationships and ministry. Combining study and ministry in a relational setting, Cor Deo is for those with a heart for God, and a passion for ministry:
- Ideal preparation for those heading on to theological training
- Unique training for lay ministry in the UK and abroad
- Excellent opportunity for a missionary or minister taking a study break
What is the syllabus?
Each day begins with a 45-minute community session, followed by the morning study session, lunch, then the afternoon study session. Here is a brief overview of each day:
Community Prayer – A session to feedback on the previous weekend, and anticipate forthcoming ministry, in order to bathe all aspects of Cor Deo ministry in prayer.
God’s Story (morning session) – We trace key features and themes of the biblical narrative from Genesis to Revelation, watching God in action in order to know Him and follow Him.
Sharing God’s Heart (afternoon session) – We introduce six primary areas of ministry, engaging them in light of biblical and theological study, in order to equip participants for ministry that shares God’s heart. (Areas of focus: preaching, leadership, pastoral counselling, evangelism, missions, and family ministry.)
Community Reports – A session of response to God’s Word. We participate in the contagious dynamic of sharing personal Bible reading highlights in order to respond to God’s Word together.
Reading God’s Heart (morning session) – We engage key sections of Scripture using both close examination and thematic analysis in order to grow in our ability to read the Bible accurately, affectively and effectively.
Question of the Week (afternoon session) – An integrative session in which the team applies lessons gained in biblical and theological study to immediate concerns of life, faith, culture and spirituality.
Community Life – A session to bring faith to life. Each week a short presentation and discussion is brought “from the heart of the mentors.” This is followed by a time of team prayer.
Church Story (morning session) – We trace the development of the church in three primary streams (scholastic, mystical and Augustinian) in order to understand how the church engaged her faith over time and how present differences were formed.
Mentored Personal Study (afternoon session) – Each participant defines a study project which they pursue, with guidance from a mentor, during the entirety of the Cor Deo programme. The primary areas for personal study are biblical/exegetical, theological/historical, or applied theology/ministry studies. Participants meet individually with their mentor during this afternoon session.
Evening Class and Seminars
Participants in Cor Deo will also be encouraged to attend the evening class and any seminars that Cor Deo offers during the training programme.
Questions About Participating in Cor Deo
Who? If you are interested in joining the Cor Deo training programme in 2011-12, please contact us with an informal enquiry. A typical participant will have a university degree (any subject) and/or significant life experience. Previous Bible school training is not required, neither does it preclude you from joining the programme. The ability to commit to full-time study and ministry between February and July, 2012, is vital.
What about September to January? If you are in the academic year cycle and are wondering what to do during September to January, we have two suggestions: (1) Get stuck into life in your local church and work in order to save the funds necessary for full participation in Cor Deo from February onwards. (2) Consider the possibility of serving a church as an intern during these months. In exchange for your involvement, a church might offer room and board, as well as a modest stipend. Cor Deo is in the process of establishing links with partner churches that will offer such an arrangement to suitable candidates.
What if I am currently overseas? If you are coming to the UK to participate in Cor Deo, you will not be required to attend the orientation and day-training events between September and January. You will receive the required reading and a personal orientation to cover for what you miss at the day-conferences. Please note that Cor Deo is not able to assist in getting UK visas for participants, so the programme is probably limited to EU passport holders.
How much will it cost? Our desire is that nobody be precluded from participating due to costs. There is a suggested donation to participate in Cor Deo (contact us for details), which does not include living expenses during the programme. We are able to offer suggestions for accommodation for those that need it (shared rental or lodging, etc.) International travel is optional and costs involved are not reflected in the suggested donation.
What next? Please get in touch and begin the conversation about the possibility of participating in Cor Deo. We hold group interview days, but the first step is to begin the conversation. Please drop us an email or give us a call and introduce yourself.
Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions related to the training programme of Cor Deo.