DPT - Contemporary Approaches To Christian Spirituality


Fall 2017

What does it mean to be human in the presence of God?
What are the goals of the spiritual life?
What does spiritual maturation consist of, and how is it fostered?
What difference does spiritual temperament make to pilgrimage?

Whereas Christian theology and education typically focus on the relationship between “knowing” and “doing,” spirituality concerns ways of “being.” Not reducible either to intellect or to agency, spirituality speaks of our identity in the presence of God, as a precondition that provides the context for Christian understanding and undergirds faithful action. Accordingly, this course will examine our largely pre-reflective assumptions about what it means to be “Christian,” describe alternative models of Christian identity, and explore ways in which spirituality shapes our research, ministry, and mission in relation to the life of the church.


  • To understand the nature of Christian spirituality in its various expressions
  • To gain a basic understanding of the history of Christian spirituality
  • To define the goals of Christian discipleship



  • To identify, appropriate, and validate a model of personal spiritual identity
  • To reflect in personal terms on the rôles of researcher and scholar as expressions of Christian identity



  • To practise (and assess) various forms of spiritual discipline
  • To formulate an approach to research, scholarship, and ministry that takes spiritual identity into consideration
  • To correlate spirituality with specific programmes of research
  • To design and assess a programme of personal and/or congregational spiritual development