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Christian Witness and Ministry in a COVID-Shaped World: Play and Sport in a Time of Pandemic

  • June 22, 2020–July 10, 2020

People love to watch sports, reminisce about the past, and debate about the future. Let’s talk about play and sports and how Christian faith helps us ask good questions and make sense of it all.

Course overview

It's a tough time to love sports. Fans and athletes around the world are feeling the pain of social distancing policies that have cancelled organized sports.

But even if you've had to set your baseball or basketball down for a while, you can use this time to hone your understanding of play. Does play have a place in a world that's reeling? And if play is so important to a healthy, productive life, how can we embrace it in the midst of a pandemic?

In this class, you'll learn why sports are unique and discover new spaces for recreation. You'll observe how fans, athletes, and sports organizations are reacting and even thriving. And that deep understanding of athletics will make your play in a post-pandemic world more meaningful and fulfilling.

Course distinctives

  • Useful for everyone—This course isn't just for coaches and athletes—it's valuable for anyone whose life intersects with sport on some level. Pastors, teachers, volunteers, and parents will all find practical insight they can use.
  • Engaging materials—Your learning will draw on books, blogs, podcasts, and other mediums where thought leaders are wrestling with and talking about play during a pandemic.
  • Creative drive—In a social-distancing world, our play has to be creative. If you love making up games or take a playful approach to life, you'll be inspired and motivated by what you learn.

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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