Justice Ministry Education (JME) is a 300-hour leadership and spiritual formation program for organizers, seminarians, clergy, activists, and nonprofit staff.
Twenty-five participants joined five pilot JME groups from January-July 2017 in Atlanta, Chicago, Nashville, Minneapolis/St. Paul, and New York City. New JME groups around the U.S. are scheduled to launch in January 2018.
WHAT YOU’LL LEARN: The Justice Ministry Education program uses the action-reflection-action form of learning. Participants engage in intense hands-on field work and reflect on their experiences with a supervisor and a small group of peers.
The five major educational goals of the JME program are:
Participants leave the program spiritually activated and practically prepared. The small group structure of the program ensures that each participant is challenged to focus their learning in the areas they most want to grow.
WHAT TO EXPECT: Justice Ministry Education groups have 4-10 participants and are led by an expert supervisor. Each participant works at a field site during the program, and the field site can be a current place of employment (if the work is related to faith-rooted justice) or any institution that allows the participant to engage in faith-rooted justice work. Supervisors assist participants in selecting an appropriate field site. The scheduling of the small group meetings are different for each group. JME is a deeply hands-on intense learning environment and is not like regular classroom learning. Participants should expect to be challenged by their peers, by themselves, and by their field sites.
COSTS: There are two fees associated with the JME program. The fee for participants is $600. The fee for field placement sites is between $500-1000 (sliding scale based on the institution’s budget). Scholarships are available for both participants and field sites.
Justice Ministry Education supervisors serve as the teacher, facilitator, guide, administrator, and troubleshooter of a Justice Ministry Education (JME) group. The general requirements for becoming a JME supervisor are:
The stipend for serving as a JME group supervisor in 2018 will be $5,000.
JME supervisors commit to:
To inquire about becoming a JME Supervisor, please click here.
The Justice Ministry Education program is guided by an expert group of advisors:
Auburn Seminary started the Justice Ministry Education (JME) program when The Beatitudes Society joined Auburn in January 2016. The Beatitudes Society has been equipping entrepreneurial faith leaders who are pursuing justice and the common good since 2005. In 2013 Auburn released Educating Religious Leaders for Faith-Rooted Justice Work, a state of the field report exploring education programs based in nonprofits and seminaries around the U.S. The Justice Ministry Education program, as the future work of The Beatitudes Society at Auburn, is an attempt to support and shape the larger field of equipping leaders to engage in social justice leadership from a faith-rooted perspective. After a pilot year in 2016-2017, JME is launching ten or more JME groups in 2018.
The JME program marries intensive field work with small group theological reflection, a combination that is inspired by CPE’s pedagogy. JME is not an accredited CPE program and is not currently pursuing a relationship to CPE, but a staff member from ACPE serves on the JME Advisory Board.
Anyone who is interested in deepening their approach to faith-rooted justice work, especially community organizers, clergy, seminary students, and staff or board members of issue-based nonprofit organizations.
A critical component of the JME learning experience is a field placement (150 hours of work). Field placements may include nonprofits, community organizing, congregations, and related sites – anywhere where faith-rooted justice work is being done. Participants may use their current place of employment as a field site. JME supervisors assist participants to identify a field site if needed. Institutions that would like to host a JME participant should contact Rabbi Justus Baird via the contact button below.
Participants who complete the JME program receive a certificate of completion of 1 unit of Justice Ministry Education from Auburn Seminary. Auburn does not offer academic credit for JME participation. Auburn will work with participants to receive credit at their home educational institution (such as through an independent study). Some JME groups have partnerships with local seminaries that may offer credit.
Scholarships are available for participants and field sites who are unable to afford the participation fee or use professional development funds. Auburn is preparing a simple scholarship application process which will be available when the applications for the 2018 JME groups are released.
Click the contact button below to email Auburn’s dean, Rabbi Justus Baird.