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Church of Christ

Kent, Washington

Preacher Training Course:

Preacher Training Objectives

We (the instructor/preacher and elders of the Kent church of Christ*) are offering a preacher training class to willing, able, and compatible candidates.  Our objective is to provide men with instruction, guidance, practice, and experience beneficial to entering into a fulltime career as a gospel minister, preferably in the Puget Sound (WA) area.  This objective will be accomplished through the following teaching program (approx. a two-year course):

Overview of the Bible and its dominant themes (theological and practical).

General overview of the OT, with emphasis on messianic prophecies.

General overview of the NT events, themes, and fulfillment of OT prophecies.

Pre-eminence of Christ, including His various roles, functions, and doctrines.

Overview of Christ’s church, including its founding, structure, distinctive character, entrance requirements, roles of members, etc.

Practical, effective, and efficient system of lesson preparation and presentation, including content, outlining, speaking styles, and preaching objectives.

Private speaking opportunities for practice and critique.

General advice and insights on preaching, relationships with elders and the congregation, family concerns, and sundry information.

Critical thinking processes and how to apply them.

Overview on evangelism—personal and congregational.

Advice on file management, time management, cataloging, slideshows, etc.

*From this point forward, the Kent church of Christ (as identified above) will be simply “the Kent church”; the elders of the Kent church of Christ will be simply “the elders”; the instructor, who will be the preacher for the Kent church of Christ, will be simply “the instructor”; and the one who takes this course will be simply “the candidate” or “the student.”  

Eligibility Requirements

Must be an English-speaking male.

Must be a Christian for at least five (5) years.

We strongly prefer a man who is married and at least 25 years old.

College education is not necessary, but is strongly recommended.

Must be willing and able to devote at least ten (10) hours a week toward this program.

Must be a proficient reader.  This program requires a great deal of reading; one who struggles with reading may fall behind and then become overwhelmed and discouraged.  The candidate should review the reading expectations (as described in the course outline below) to determine whether or not he can fulfill this obligation.

Must be interviewed by the instructor and the elders.  This interview may reveal an incompatibility between the candidate and this program, for whatever reason; or, it may reveal that the candidate does not wish to work with the instructor and/or the elders, for whatever reason.  In either case, all pursuance of this program will be ended for the candidate with no further obligations on either side.

Provide lesson outlines and audio recordings of at least three lessons given previously.

Must sign an agreement with the instructor and elders of the Kent church.  

This agreement may be annulled within 30 days of signing upon the decision of any party (i.e., the candidate, the instructor, or the elders), thus ending all future obligations.  After this 30-day probation period, however, the candidate will be expected to complete the full course, and the instructor and the elders will be expected to fulfill their obligations to him.  

A payment of $1000 for books and training expenses must be made by the student payable to “Kent church of Christ” before instruction begins (a receipt will be issued).  The Kent church will then purchase the books, etc., necessary for this instruction.

Whatever expenses exceed this amount ($1000) will become the responsibility of the Kent church, not the student.  Any materials purchased for the student (by himself or the Kent church) belong to him; they do not have to be returned.  (This does not include PowerPoint slideshows or sermon recordings.  These will be used by, but not given to, the student for this course.)  

Upon full completion of this course, the Kent church will purchase $500 worth of resource books to contribute to the student’s library OR a new laptop (chosen by the instructor) as an incentive for him to finish.  

Termination defined; the disposition of remaining balances upon termination:

All obligation to the student will be ended upon the student’s:

Abandonment of this class.   

Documented pattern of no-shows or cancellations with the instructor.

Chronic failure to complete assigned homework, as expected in a reasonable timeframe.  

Unwillingness to cooperate with the stated expectations of this course.

(In any of these cases, no refunds will be made to the student.)

The student’s payment will be refunded in the event of instructor’s:

Abandonment of this class.

Documented pattern of no-shows or cancellations with the student.

Unwillingness to cooperate with the stated expectations of this course.

(In any of these cases, a pro-rated refund will be made to the student.)

In all cases involving termination or refund, the elders will serve as judges of the matter, and will render a verdict based upon their personal and impartial investigation.  This verdict will be final.  

A respite from instruction and/or homework assignments (for vacations, holidays, anniversaries, family emergencies, and similar reasons) is acceptable for both the instructor and the student upon a mutually-determined agreement.  Such respites will not be counted as absences or cancellations (as noted above).

Homework, reading, and speaking topics will be regularly assigned.  This homework is not optional, but is considered important and necessary for this course.  The required reading material is subject to change at any time, but will remain reasonable in length and directly related to the course subjects being covered.  

In the event that the student loses (under any circumstance) any of these materials, he will have to re-purchase what is lost with his own money.  The Kent church will not be obligated to purchase the same materials more than once.  

During the course of this training, it is strongly recommended that the student and his family regularly attend the Kent church, so that:  he can witness the instructor’s own preaching firsthand; he can participate in our classes; he can work with our members; he can give back to the same congregation that is helping him (Galatians 6:6); he has easy and frequent access to the instructor.  Part of our objective is not only to train men to preach, but also to benefit from their participation in our preaching and class teaching.  

All training will be done at the Kent church building, a place relatively close to this building, or at the instructor’s home.  This is not a correspondence course.  

The student will, if necessary, travel to accommodate the instructor, not the other way around.  Likewise, the time and day for training sessions can be negotiated, but must not impose upon the instructor to meet (for example) the difficult schedule of the student.  It is not the instructor’s responsibility to sacrifice his schedule for the sake of the student; it is the student’s responsibility to make himself available for this training.  

Some training may be done by other instructors (preachers) in cities other than Kent.  This will require the student and those instructors to work out a time and place which will work for both parties, but will favor the convenience of the instructors in the case where a difficulty in this scheduling is encountered.

A computer (or easy and regular access to one) is required.  A working knowledge of a document-writing program (e.g., Microsoft Word) and Microsoft PowerPoint is strongly recommended.  

Bible and notebook (for notes) is required.  NASB is strongly recommended.  

*The Kent church of Christ details:  

Physical location:  11010 SE Kent-Kangley Road, Kent, WA, 98030

Mailing address:  PO Box 6646, Kent, WA, 98064

Phone number:  253-854-3737

Webpage:  www.kentchurchofchrist.com

Preacher:  Chad Sychtysz (2003 – present), 253-630-4356 (home); email preacher@kentchurchofchrist.com; business webpage www.booksbychad.com

Elders (currently):   elders@kentchurchofchrist.com

o Richard Baldwin, 253-397-6006 (cell); richbald@comcast.net

o Jim Naughton, 253-508-0508 (cell)

o Dick Seigenthaler, 253-631-1926 (home)

General Course Outline

(not necessarily in order)

This is an abbreviated syllabus for the webpage only.  The full syllabus, including all required reading materials, will be discussed in the initial interview between the student and the instructor and elders.

Orientation and introduction to preaching

Biblical authority:  what it is and how it is to be used

Overview of the Old Testament

Overview of the New Testament

Overview of the role of Christ in God’s “eternal purpose”

Overview of Christ’s church (description and design)

Overview of Christianity (real and imagined) throughout the last 2,000 years

Christian living (expectations of living in covenant with God)

The role (and job description) of a preacher

Sermon preparation

Sermon delivery

Class teaching (to groups)

The preacher and his family


Internal:  for the congregation

External:  for those yet outside of Christ

Presentation of actual sermons and classes (interspersed throughout this training)

Private presentations and critique

Public presentations and critique