Sexuality Issues for Christian Religious Professionals

Offered by the Religious Institute in collaboration with Lifelong Learning at Episcopal Divinity School
Session runs from October 1, 2015 to December 31, 2015

Facilitated by Marie Alford-Harkey, deputy director of the Religious Insitute, this course is designed to provide a foundation of knowledge about sexuality that is critical for religious professionals.

The course addresses an urgent need among Christian religious leaders to be well-educated in issues related to sexuality. In addition, the course helps United Methodist Church candidates for licensed and ordained ministry meet the required professional sexual ethics goals and competencies. The primary texts for the course are the Religious Institute’s A Time to Build: Creating Sexually Healthy Faith Communities and Jung and Stephens’ Professional Sexual Ethics: A Holistic Ministry Approach.

Course topics include:

  • understanding personal values and history
  • components of sexual identity
  • sexual development
  • life behaviors of a sexually healthy adult
  • dealing with attraction and boundaries
  • pastoral care around sexuality issues
  • sexuality education in faith communities
  • church history and sexuality
  • scripture and sexuality
  • preaching/worship

Registration and more information

The course takes approximately 30 hours to complete (plus 1 to 2 hours of reading per week), is a blend of interactive and self-directed learning, and draws on the strengths of peer learning in an online community setting. For optimal learning, students should expect to spend 3 to 5 hours per week (including reading) on the course over the 12 week session.

  • Session runs from October 1, 2015 to December 31, 2015
  • Fees: $125 to audit, $200 to receive a certificate of completion; $275 to receive 3 CEUs
  • Download the Sexuality Issues for Christian Religious Professionals Syllabus [PDF]
  • For more information email Marie Alford-Harkey or call 203-222-005


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