Dissertation Projects

Date of Award

2008

Document Type

Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

School

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Clifford Jones

Second Advisor

Ricardo Norton

Third Advisor

Larry Lichtenwalter

Abstract

Problem

Members of the Bladensburg Seventh-day Adventist Church expressed a desire establish closer bonds within the congregation and community. The lack of close friendships within the church fellowship led to several members transferring to other area churches. Later, an interest survey revealed the congregation wanted to participate in friendship evangelism. In response to the desire of members to form closer friendships and to engage in friendship evangelism, the purpose of this study is to develop a seminar of friendship evangelism for the Bladensburg Seventh-day Adventist Church that will enable members to identify, understand, and form friendships within the church fellowship while leading others to a personal relationship with Christ in a natural style.

Method

The seminar, Climbing Friendship Mountain, was designed over a year and implemented in a six week period to teach participants how to identify, understand, and form friendships. The seminar consisted of the main components, classroom instruction and field work experience. The classroom instruction taught the participants principles and concepts of friendship evangelism. The purpose of the field work component was to provide the participants with an opportunity to practice the techniques and principles learned in the classroom.

Results

Participants who completed the seminar received a certificate. Participants formed new friendships within the church fellowship and with other non-believers. Some even successfully led friends and relatives to the faith, which resulted in baptism.

Conclusions

The project exposed the participants to the conscious reality that exists each day to form a friendship and share Christ with a friend. The positive evaluations received. The old friendships developed, and new friendship circles formed. Participants used their influence to secure opportunities for the seminar to be shared at four elementary schools, and three local churches. The fact that several participants were able to lead a friend to Christ and eventually become a baptized member of the local church affirms the contribution of the Climbing Friendship Mountain Seminar program and the validity of the project.

Subject Area

Evangelistic work--Seventh-day Adventists; Bladensburg Seventh-day Adventist Church ( Md.); Climbing Friendship Mountain Seminar

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