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Christian Witness and Ministry in a COVID-Shaped World: Perspectives on Faith and Citizenship

  • June 22, 2020–July 10, 2020

Christians are called by God to be effective citizens. Gain a better understanding of government and a toolkit to push the political system toward justice.

Course overview

How did your government—local, state, and national—respond to the COVID-19 pandemic? Were they prepared or caught off-guard? Were they quick to adjust to new information or did they move too slowly? Do you wonder “how can we do this better?”

The pandemic is shining a light on the strengths of our systems of politics and policymaking—and illuminating their weaknesses. If you’re going to help laws and policies be more effective and responsive, you need to understand how governments get things done during a crisis.

In this course, you’ll do a deep dive into how the American polity is organized to govern. You’ll see how American political culture is reflected in government structures and processes. You’ll explore the ways that different actors within these structures set goals, implement strategies, and adjust to change. And you’ll learn how you can help politics pursue justice, remake trust, and bring hope when it’s needed most.

Course distinctives

  • Ask big questions—Learn in an environment of curiosity and conviction. You'll be pushed to think outside partisan lines to find workable approaches to incredibly complex governing challenges.
  • Be a more effective citizen—Gain practical knowledge you can use to engage with politics and policy, from your local neighborhood to the nation’s capital. Your deep study of policymaking during times of crisis will make you a more informed citizen for every situation.
  • Lead with service—You'll read and discuss ideas from leading Christian political thinkers and doers. Embrace a vision for politics that is centered on humility, grace, and service.
  • Encourage and improve—Explore the ways that free expression, a free press, and accessible politics can all help your political leaders make better decisions.

Course details

There is no set meeting time for this course. You will have opportunities for live collaboration with the professor and other students. If you choose to audit the course, plan to spend 10–14 hours over the course of three weeks reading, writing, watching videos, and having discussions. You won't be graded. If you are taking the course for academic credit, expect an additional 20 hours of course work. Credit-seekers are awarded a credit on a completed/not-completed basis without a letter grade.


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