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Media Savvy Pastor

Sponsored by the Institute for Pastoral Leadership

October 3-5, 2011
Princeton Theological Seminary’s School of Christian Vocation and Mission

This seminar will offer pastors a theological framework and practical tips for using various media in their ministry. Each day will be dedicated to a different theme.

Day 1: Almost Connectional: Technology in Ministry – Its Practical Implementation and Theological Justification. Michael Gyura of Poka Yoke Design will lead four sessions on this theme, including discussion of church websites and the use of social media. An optional evening session will also be offered, where participants can design a website with Michael's help either for their own pastoral presence on the web or for their congregational website. Details about the cost of this extra session are available during registration.

Day 2: Media in Ministry: Being a Critical Consumer in the Media Mall. Peter Hazelrigg of Presbyterian Campus Ministry of Greensboro will lead four sessions, exploring the various messages of pop culture that have an impact on Christians today. A critical framework will be provided to discern what parts of the media and technology available might be vital tools in ministry. Participants will explore music, television, and film in the first part of the seminar and will participate collaboratively in writing curriculum that includes these various media. The second part of the seminar will focus on ministry in a digital world and the implications for worship, pastoral care, and mission. Bring your favorite technology with you and we will explore together.

Day 3: Communicating Effectively through Media Channels. Macky Alston of Auburn Media at Auburn Theological Seminary will lead the final half-day. His two training sessions will focus on preparing religious leaders to communicate effectively through media channels, including national and local newspapers, TV, radio, and the Internet.

Seminar Leaders

Michael Gyura is owner of Poka Yoke Design, a web design company, and a student at Princeton Theological Seminary. Gyura graduated from Augsburg College with a BA in Youth and Family Ministry, before which he worked in youth ministry.

Peter Hazelrigg serves as the Executive Director of Presbyterian Campus Ministry of Greensboro, and is also a Senior Partner at Pilgrimage Professional Development Group, which provides leadership development and executive coaching for church professionals. Hazelrigg is a graduate of Princeton Seminary and holds a master's degree in counseling from UNC Greensboro.

Macky Alston serves as Director of Auburn Media at Auburn Theological Seminary, dedicated to informed, engaging coverage of religion in the media. Alston is an award-winning filmmaker and an organizer in the worlds of media and religion. He has received the Sundance Film Festival Freedom of Expression Award, the Gotham Open Palm Award, three Emmy nominations, and appeared widely in the press, including The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Today Show and The New York Times.


A tentative agenda is available for download as a .pdf here.


The program costs $200, which includes tuition, refreshments, and meals. Affordable on-campus lodging (as low as $55 per night) is available to those who need it. Please read the registration and cancellation policy here. Online registration is now closed. To register, or to ask further questions, please call the Erdman Center Front Desk at 609-497-7990.