Older Adult Ministry Certification

Center for Lifelong Learning Prepares Churches for Aging Population with Older Adult Ministry Certificate

Decatur, GA—The Center for Lifelong Learning (CLL) at Columbia Theological Seminary and the Presbyterian Older Adult Ministries Network (POAMN) are pleased to announce a new partnership that will better equip churches and faith-based organizations to address the needs of older participants. Beginning in April 2015, the CLL will be the host location for the Older Adult Ministry Certificate Program (OAM).

Jan L. McGilliard will serve as the OAM Certificate Program Coordinator. She is a member of the POAMN Executive Committee, and is a past president of the organization. McGilliard holds a M.S. from Virginia Tech in Adult Development and Aging, a Certificate in Gerontology, Certifications in Intergenerational Programming and Lay Preaching. She is a Ruling Elder in the PC(USA) and lives in Blacksburg, VA.

“The program meets a very real need for congregations,” says McGilliard. “It is not uncommon for churches to be half or more older adults, and in small congregations, nearly all may be older. Clergy and Christian educators increasingly recognize the need to know more about the second half of life as it relates to their mission and ministry.”

The program is open to participants from any denomination or faith tradition. Four core classes and a capstone project are required to complete the Certificate Program. Two classes will be offered each spring at the CLL; participants may begin with any of these scheduled classes. Pre-course reading and post-course assignments are required. The certificate course of study may be completed in 24-36 months.

The course schedule through the spring of 2016 is listed, below, and includes two opportunities prior to the partner events launching in April 2015. Program fees for each course at the Center for Lifelong Learning are currently set at $200 per course; guest rooms and campus dining are available at the time of registration. Limited scholarship funds are available through POAMN; contact Jan McGilliard for additional information.

OAM course offered in 2014 at the POAMN Annual Conference in Excelsior Springs, MO

Spiritual Formation and Older Adults
October 17-18 | Instructor:  Henry C. Simmons, PhD

OAM course offered at the Association of Church Educators Annual Event in Baltimore, MD

Spiritual Formation and Older Adults
February 2-4, 2015 | Instructor: Henry C. Simmons, PhD

OAM courses offered at the CLL in 2015

The Process of Aging and Implications for Ministry
April 12-15 | Instructor: Mary Ann Johnson, PhD
Click here for additional information and to register.

Teaching for Transformation
April 16-18 | Instructor: Rev. Joyce MacKichan Walker
Click here for additional information and to register.

OAM classes at the CLL in 2016—Registration opens in spring 2015

Spiritual Formation and Older Adults
April 11-13 | Instructor:  Henry C. Simmons, PhD

Framing Theological Questions with Older Adults,
April 12-16 | Instructor: Rev. Marvin Simmers, EdD

Columbia Theological Seminary is an educational institution of the Presbyterian Church (USA). The Center for Lifelong Learning serves as a resource for church professionals and lay people. For a current list of upcoming programs offered by the CLL, visit http://www.ctsnet.edu/lifelong-courses-and-events.

Program Contacts:

Sarah Erickson
Director, Lifelong Learning
404 687-4526

Jan McGilliard
POAMN Certificate Program Coordinator
Presbyterian Older Adult Ministry Network