Theological reflection is a conversation that’s personal as well as collaborative. It’s not a monologue. Thinking itself is dialogical. In order to learn the Arts of theological reflection, we must first understand that when theological reflection is working, it’s effective because the conversation is dialogical. We may begin by engaging in conversation, but it only becomes a theological dialogue under certain conditions.
Bellous and Sheffield introduced the notion of theological reflection as a conversation with God, with oneself, and with the Christian Community. It’s a conversation in which we encounter the humanizing gaze of God breaking into our alienation. As we converse, we stop and listen to ourselves and our own assumptions and allow others to listen and serve as witness to the story we are telling. That story is a personal narrative each one of us has been gathering since childhood that shapes how we understand ourselves, God and the world.
Walk with the authors as they draw together both theory and practice that informs the development of both personal and collaborative theological reflection. Various models and exercises give attention to the arts of the theological reflection.
This book invites you to ask what you long to accomplish as you minister and lead in Jesus’ name. Reading this book and working through its exercises will give helpful background and ministry tools for facilitating Christian formation and collaborative learning as a faith community.