Provide a brief history of the denomination

DENOMINATION PROJECT: PARTS 2 & 3

CTI 233, Fall 2020
PART 2
Due 30 October 2020

Provide a brief history of the denomination
 When, where, and why it was formed
 Important figures in the history of the denomination
 Current membership: U.S. and worldwide
 Polity: What is the authority structure for the denomination: national/regional/local/even global
 Include the denomination’s logo in your PPT slides
Worship practices
 Who conducts the service? What is that person typically called?
 General formality vs. informality of worship (may greatly depend on local congregational taste and
practice). This will include service design, music, clerical vestments, prayers (who writes them, what
style of language they use)—many different things!
 Baptism: who, when, how
 Communion: What is it called? Bread or wafers? Wine or grape juice? Method of distribution?
 Denominational hymnal: What is its title? When was it published? Is there a 21 st century supplement?
 Focal point of the service: Preaching? Holy Communion? Something else?
 In addition to Baptism and Holy Communion, are there particular rituals that are especially significant?
 Are there any restrictions on who can be ordained?
 Are there any restrictions on who can be a member?
 How and typically at what age does one become a member? Is there a rite that marks entrance into full
membership, e.g. confirmation, baptism, coming of age ceremonies?

PART 3
Due 18 November 2020

 Based on your scholarly research–not just on observations that you might have made at a worship
service or from class discussion–what emphasis on transcendence or immanence do you perceive in the
theology of the denomination? Does one perspective seem to dominate? Does the fundamental
worldview seem to be more world-conscious or self-conscious, according to Faulkner’s definitions of
those terms? Cite examples to support your assertions.
 What are the greatest ethical concerns of the denomination? In what areas of social justice does the
denomination seem to be most active? Is there a denominational relief organization (such as UMCOR,
the United Methodist Committee on Relief)? If so, then how is it tied to missions and/or evangelism?
 Related to that last question: What seem to be the big “hot button issues,” “flash points,” or areas of
concern or disagreement for the denomination right now? What are the denomination’s history and
current stance(s) on the following?
o Authority & gender
o Race & ethnicity
o Gender, sexual orientation, and marriage (includes both marriage equality and gender-based
role expectations within marriage)
o Remember here that you are talking about the denomination’s viewpoints, not about your own
convictions. You are encouraged, although not required, to compare the denominational
perspectives with your own, but ultimately you are reporting on the denomination itself.

2

 How does the denomination seem to position itself along the continuum of tradition and innovation that
we have discussed in class? Provide examples to support your conclusion.
 What seem to be the denomination’s distinctive strengths or points of identity? In what does the
denomination take pride in distinguishing itself from other denominations?
 How does the denomination compare with what is most familiar to you?
 What else did you find to be especially intriguing, appealing, confusing, or even disappointing about
your denomination?
 What other comments or observations would you make? Come up with at least one answer.

SOURCES

 At least two (2) journal articles (may be accessed online; doesn’t count for other online sources)
 At least three (3) websites specific to your denomination
o One should be the website for the headquarters for the denomination. In the majority of cases,
the headquarters will be located in the U.S.
o Another could well be the website of a particular church that provides an especially good
representation of the denomination as a whole.

 A service broadcast from an American church, preferably recorded on or before 15 November 2020
 Wikipedia, Encyclopedia Britannica, and biography.com are not acceptable sources for this assignment.
 Your complete bibliography should appear at the end of your PowerPoint presentation. Use either MLA
or Chicago Style (Turabian), placing the date at the end of the citation.
LEARNING FROM YOUR RESEARCH & FROM YOUR COLLEAGUES

 Do not simply cut-and-paste information from any online sources that you use without paying attention
to the actual content. You will be asked questions in class that pertain directly to your content, and you
should be able to address most of those questions—without citing actual statistics—off the top of your
head. Don’t just superficially work with your information; work into your information and make it part
of yourself so that you can speak authoritatively about your topic.
 Prepare to take notes on what your classmates have to say about their respective denominations. You
will be asked to work with that information in your final essay.
COURSE GOALS RELATED TO THIS ASSIGNMENT

From Sacred & Secular course content goals:
 Enable students to investigate and describe significant issues of religion in individual and/or communal
life
 Enable students to articulate, compare, and contrast ethical perspectives from various religious or
secular contexts, including a Christian context
 Enable students to analyze and/or experience diverse religious expressions and perspectives
From Sacred & Secular course learning outcomes:
 Students will demonstrate how religious beliefs, artifacts, and/or practices influence ethical
performance in human life.
 Students will read and interpret products that explore and/or give expression to important religious
matters (e.g., primary sacred texts, art, music, primary or secondary literature and texts that explore
matters of religion, etc.).
 Students will describe and analyze and/or experience diverse religious expressions and perspectives.

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