Skip To Content
The Church: People of God on a Mission

The Church: People of God on a Mission

Ended Mar 31, 2021

Sorry! The enrollment period is currently closed. Please check back soon.

Full course description

6-Week Course


featuring text by Dr. Morris Pelzel and videos of faculty from Boston College School of Theology and Ministry

The church embodies a series of core dynamics: divine invitation and human response; gathering in order to be sent; membership and mission. Reflecting theologically on the way in which these dynamics are expressed in the church today makes up the discipline of “ecclesiology.” Through this course, we explore the nature of the Church including discussion of ministries, the Church’s foundation in word and sacrament, and the call to be an evangelizing people about the work of transforming the world in light of the Gospel.

This course has a required text Morris Pelzel, Ecclesiology: The Church as Communion and Mission. Chicago: Loyola Press, 2002. (Loyola Press) (Amazon)


  • Introductory Week
  • Week 1: The Gathering of Disciples
  • Week 2: Living Baptism in the Church Today
  • Week 3: Rooted in Word and Sacrament
  • Week 4: Forming an Evangelizing Church
  • Week 5: The Church’s Mission

Special Features

This course includes:

  • Video clips;
  • Text transcripts of each featured video;
  • Weekly questions for reflection and discussion;
  • A weekly introduction and study guide; and
  • A regularly updated Resources page to use for further study.

All STM Online: Crossroads courses include these features

  • Participants have access 24 hours/7 days a week to the course's password-protected web site.
  • Each participant belongs to a small Community for Conversation and faith sharing guided by a facilitator.
  • The course site is usually available to participants at least three months after the course has ended.
  • An orientation in how to navigate the web site is always available.
  • Technical assistance is easy to contact and prompt in returning a message.
  • A Certificate of Active Participation is awarded to those who post at least three messages of substance for each week of content.

Time Commitment

A participant can expect to spend an average of approximately 3-4 hours each week. This commitment includes both the assigned reading and interaction online.

Certificate Requirement Categories

Themes of Our Christian Tradition

Multicolored abstract church choir