Latest from the Wayne Oates Institute
The Power to Bless -- January 13-31, 2014
The Power to Bless is one of the Oates Institute's most popular seminars. One participant described it as "Awesome!" Others have talked about it as life changing and ministry changing. This is a seminar that explores both the presence and absence of blessing in our lives. It reflects on blessing the next generation and the return of the blessing to the prior generation. It is a seminar that engages participants in reflecting on their own stories as well as readings from Myron Madden's book on The Power to Bless and three popular movies.
"Blessing is power," Dr. Myron Madden says. "Blessing is empowering people, affirming people, giving them the freedom to be who they are." Oddly enough, Madden notes, no one ever seems to get enough blessing. The seminar is arranged around three presentations by Myron Madden, "Blessing as Gift," "Questions about the Blessing," and "Returning the Blessing."
Madden is the author of several books, and has presented widely on the issue of blessing. He once noted that "It is a chaplain's duty to bestow God's blessing on the hurt, the discouraged and the sick." This blessing, Madden explains, "is not merely a way with people. It is the power of God to change lives." He also notes, in The Power to Bless, "if there is such infinite variety in God's work, might we not safely assume that for each of us there is a special blessing, the blessing of somehow getting a glimpse of how we fit into it all?"
Through peer dialogue reflecting on writings by Dr. Myron Madden (The Power To Bless) and three popular films, seminar participants will reflect on the meaning of blessing. Participants will also explore the interaction between parents and children in the giving and receiving of blessing along with the giving and receiving of blessing outside the family.
Presentations and Films (one per week):
"Blessing As Gift" by Myron Madden, Ph.D. Film: October Sky
"Questions About the Blessing" by Myron Madden, Ph.D. Film: Whale Rider
"Returning the Blessing" by Myron Madden, Ph.D. Film: The Way
Following this seminar, participants should be able to:
* Recognize the presence and/or absence of blessing within one's self and others.
* Interpret the Old Testament practices of blessing in light of contemporary practices we observe within families and beyond families.
* Articulate an understanding of what Myron Madden describes as the "Power to Bless."
* Recognize who holds the power to bless in a given context.
* Identify situations where elders are seeking, and needing, the blessing of younger persons.
* Help those to whom we minister find and/or grant blessing.
Continuing Education Credit
This seminar features the Oates Institute's Connected Learning approach and is limited to 12 participants. It offers 12 contact hours of continuing education for ministers, counselors, chaplains, and social workers. To qualify for the CEUs participants are expected to read the presentations and participate in the email discussion by contributing at least two email messages per week. One message is to reflect on the presentations or case studies in light of one's personal experience and context and the second is to respond to someone else’s reflection or inquiry.
Members of the Oates Institute may register for this (and any seminar) for free, others may register for only $90.
- Published: 09 November 2013