1 Brigham Young University Idaho FDREL 130: Mission Preparation Spring 2015 Instructor: Fernando Castro Office: Taylor 220; Hours: MW 2:00 4:00 PM Section 02 / Mondays & Wednesdays / 9:00 10:00 AM / Taylor 106 Course Objective: The Prophet Joseph Smith taught, After all that has been said, the greatest and most important duty is to preach the Gospel (History of the Church, 2:478). The chief objective of this course is to help you, as prospective missionary, to gain a higher appreciation for the purpose of missionary work, which is, to invite others to come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end (Preach My Gospel, 1). In addition, this course is organized to assist you in developing Christ-like attributes, teaching the doctrines and principles of the restored gospel with power and authority (Alma 17:3), using time wisely, and becoming familiar with expected personal and missionary conduct as well as basic mission organization. Teaching Philosophy: BYU-Idaho s vision is to foster faith-building and life-changing learning. Our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, the gifts of the Holy Ghost, our commitment to the restored gospel, and our effort to build a Zion learning community motivate us to learn and teach by study and by faith (Learning Model, BYU-Idaho, June 2007, p.1). Two underlying assumptions in the BYU-Idaho Learning Model are: (1) that everyone at BYU-I is a learner and a teacher, and (2) that learners and teachers are at different levels in their individual progress toward learning by study and also by faith. With this in mind and the desire to enhance learning and teaching experiences at all levels, both learners and teachers are invited to: Exercise faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as a principle of power; Understand that true teaching is done by and with the Holy Ghost; Lay hold upon the word of God as found in the holy scriptures and in the words of the prophets; Act for themselves and accept responsibility for learning and teaching; Love, serve, and teach one another. Ultimately, the Learning Model becomes applicable for both learners and teachers, in and out of class, through a process that includes three steps: (1) Preparation, (2) Teaching one another, and (3) Pondering and seeking further learning. What does this all mean? In sum, it means that you must prepare yourself spiritually to be taught and guided by the Holy Ghost, observe the Honor Code and Class Rules of Conduct, complete all assigned readings and assignments, come to class prepared to contribute with questions, comments, quotes, thoughts and ideas ready to be shared, keep a learning journal and write down impressions and insights, pursue unanswered questions, help invite the Spirit and a feeling of charity, that all may be edified of all. Required Text: The Standard Works (LDS edition). Bring to class printed set of scriptures. No digital scriptures permitted. Preach My Gospel (Also available free online) Mission Preparation Student Manual, Religion 130 (Also available free online) True to the Faith: A Gospel Reference (Recommended) (Also available free online)
2 Page 2 Grading Criteria: Grades will be determined by a point system. Points may be earned or lost during the semester in five different areas: 1) ATTENDANCE: All students are expected to arrive before class begins. One point will be awarded each class for attendance on time. Students who arrive late or leave early or miss class DO NOT earn points for attendance that day. You must report your attendance on I-Learn to receive credit (see instructions on I-Learn). Also, it is your responsibility to mark yourself present on the roll by putting your initials in the box. If the roll is not signed, it will be considered an absence even if you were in class on that day. Students who miss more than five classes without excuse will receive an (F) failing grade for the course. The only absences considered excused are: (1) university authorized absences, and (2) serious illness. Depending on the case, please turn in a signed copy of the Authorized Absence form before you leave or doctor s note when you return to class. If you have an excused absence and complete make-up work for the missed day you may keep the point for attendance that day. Please realize that daily class attendance is extremely important. I would suggest that you use your allowed absences in case of extenuating circumstances only. 2) READING: Students are expected to complete the assigned reading for the day prior to class. Two points will be awarded each class for reading the assigned block. Contained in this syllabus is a reading schedule for the semester. You must report your reading on I-Learn to receive credit (see instructions on I-Learn). For purposes of this course, reading is considered to include studying, marking key words and verses, praying for understanding, pondering, reflecting on the content of the scriptures. 3) JOURNAL: Students are expected to write in a journal reflections, discoveries, questions, insights, feelings, ideas for application gained from reading the assigned scripture block for the day. Journal entries are to be completed prior to each class session. Two points will be awarded each class for attaching or posting your journal entry on I-Learn prior to class. Journal entries should be typed and be no longer than one page in length. A sample Reading and Journal Report is included in this syllabus. Follow that format for your journal entries. Short or poor quality journals will receive a lower grade. Do not journals to the instructor. 4) RESEARCH PAPER: Students are expected to write one research or reflective paper. The paper is worth 25 points. Select as topic any of the Christlike Attributes listed in Chapter 6 of Preach My Gospel and write a paper 5-6 pages in length, one-inch margins, double-spaced (12 font, Times New Roman), MLA style. Include a minimum of five in-text citations from non-scriptural sources, in addition to scripture references (do not use footnotes or endnotes). Also include a separate Works Cited page at the end. You must submit a hard-copy of the paper. Do not your paper to the instructor. The paper is due on June 24th. Late submissions will not be accepted. 5) QUIZZES / FINAL EXAM: Throughout the course there will be five unannounced quizzes and a final exam. Each pop quiz will be based on the reading for that day. There are no make-up quizzes if you miss any. The final exam will be a take-home comprehensive test. It will be content-focused, covering narrative and factual information. You may use the scriptures and other authoritative sources to answer every question. It must be completed on your own and not in collaboration with others. The final is due on July 20th. Late submissions will not be accepted. Each quiz is worth 10 points (for a maximum of 50 points) and the final exam is worth 100 points. The five quizzes and final exam together are worth 150 points. POINTS AND GRADE BREAKDOWN 1) Attendance: 25 1 point = 25 points A = C = ) Reading: 25 2 points = 50 points A- = C- = ) Journal: 25 2 points = 50 points B+ = D+ = ) Research Paper = 25 points B = D = ) Assessments / Final Exam = 150 points B- = D- = Total = 300 points C+ = F = below 180
3 Page 3 Honor Code: As a BYU-Idaho student you are expected to comply with the Church Educational System Honor Code. Two specific policies embodied in the Honor Code include: DRESS AND GROOMING STANDARDS: Your dress and grooming should always be modest, neat, clean, and consistent with the values and principles of BYU-Idaho and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. You are expected to be familiar with and observe classroom attire and appearance standards. Refer to the CES Honor Code at BYU-Idaho for details on what constitutes appropriate attire and appearance. ACADEMIC HONESTY: You are expected to be totally honest in all your work. This includes honesty in completing your own reading assignments, journal entries, written work, and taking tests. You should avoid academic dishonesty and misconduct in all of its forms. Refer to the CES Honor Code at BYU-Idaho for details on what constitutes academic dishonesty and misconduct. Incidents of academic dishonesty and/or misconduct will be reported to the Dean of Students and result in a failing (F) grade. I trust your commitment to abide by the highest standards of honor, integrity, and morality. (I have read this statement and agree to its terms) Signature: Class Procedure: Each class will begin with an opening hymn and prayer. The lesson will cover content from the reading assignment for that day. Be current with your reading for the day and expect to be asked to share information from your journal. During class discussion, be reminded that not all should be spokesman at once, but let one speak at a time, and let all listen unto his sayings (D&C 88:122). It is my goal to finish each lesson on time or a few minutes early, as a result please refrain from gathering your belongings or leaving before the final Amen. Class Rules of Conduct: Please be respectful of others around you. Disturbing in class will affect your standing in class and result in a lower final grade. Violation of any of the following class rules will result in a loss of 25 points from your final grade: NO CELL PHONES, LAPTOPS OR OTHER ELECTRONIC DEVICES ARE ALLO IN THIS CLASS (turn them off before walking in), No food or drink (water only), No disrupting or causing distractions (such as visiting or doing homework for another class, being chronically late to class, reading the newspaper, sleeping, etc), No Honor Code infractions (such as male students failing to attend class clean shaven). Repeat violations of any one or a combination of any of these rules will result in you no longer being welcome in class. (I have read this statement and agree to its terms) Signature: Disabilities and Special Needs: Students with a diagnosed disability or special needs that may require reasonable accommodation on the part of BYU-Idaho should contact Richard Taylor, Director of Services for Students with Disabilities at It is your responsibility to also inform me of any special needs you have the first week of class. Accommodations will be considered on an individual basis based on the recommendation from the Disability Services Office and interactive dialogue with the student. If you are not LDS, please inform me during the first week of class. You will be at no disadvantage in this class if you attend class, read the assigned material, and complete your journal. Should you require clarification of LDS terminology or other particulars unfamiliar to you, contact me to arrange assistance for you. This course is not designed to contest your faith or debate doctrine. Please feel welcome.
4 Page 4 Syllabus Adjustments: The instructor reserves the right to make necessary adjustments to the syllabus, assignments, lesson presentations, or grading criteria throughout the semester. Any changes will be communicated as soon as possible. BYU-Idaho Policy on Use of Electronic Devices in the Classroom (BYU-Idaho Academic Catalog , p. 41) The BYU-Idaho Learning Model envisions students who have come to class prepared to share ideas rather than merely receive them. Learning occurs through discussion in which each student listens carefully to the comments of others and seeks the opportunity to add, as inspired, to what is being said. Participating in such a discussion requires careful attention as though one were with a friend, one-on-one. In order to promote such a learning environment, the University requires, as general policy, that electronic devices be turned off during class time. These devices include laptop computers, cell phones and all other electronic devices. Instructors may, for the sake of achieving special learning objectives or to meet individual student needs, authorize the use of specific electronic devices in their classrooms. However, it is recommended that the use of laptops for note-taking not be allowed except for occasional lectures. In the Learning Model environment, thinking about what is being said in the classroom and seeking the opportunity to add a comment is more important than transcribing the discussion. Impressions that come in class can be noted by hand. When class is over, students will find that their handwritten notes, along with ideas brought to remembrance by the Spirit, will allow them to write detailed reflections. Those reflections will be richer because of the student s active participation in the class discussion.
5 FDREL 130: Mission Preparation Instructor: Fernando Castro Spring 2015 Class Schedule and Reading Assignment PREPARE TEACH ONE ANOTHER PONDER / PROVE Date Assigned Reading (Reading/Journal reports due daily, except where indicated)* Class Discussion Emphasis Additional Questions / Issues for Further Consideration Apr 20 Syllabus *No Reading or Journal due Course Introduction Apr 22 Chapter 1, Pages 1-10 Article: Elder Ronald A. Rasband, The Divine Call of a Missionary, General Conference, April 2010 The field is white already to harvest (D&C 4:4). The gathering of Israel. The focus of missionary work is to invite people to Christ. A full-time mission call comes from the Lord through His authorized servants. How is the meaning of the word gospel different than the word church? Why are missionaries willing to sacrifice so much for people they may not know? Where are the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (Israel) today? Apr 27 Chapter 2, Pages Article: Elder David A. Bednar, Becoming a Preach My Gospel Missionary, MTC Devotional, 24 June 2011 Personal worthiness is necessary to accomplish missionary work. Personal worthiness allows prospective missionaries to obtain temple blessings What will it mean to you to be set apart as a full-time representative of Jesus Christ? Why is being worthy so important to missionary work? Apr 29 Chapter 2, Pages Repentance is a cleansing process that allows us to become worthy. If the Lord remembers our sins no more, why is it difficult for some people to forgive themselves? May 4 Student Manual Chapter 3, Pages The Light of Christ is a power for good in the lives of all people. The Holy Ghost is a member of the Godhead. What is the relationship between the Holy Ghost and the Light of Christ? May 6 Chapter 3, Pages There are many ways that the Holy Ghost influences our lives for good. Why is it important for a missionary to understand how the Holy Ghost communicates? Sensitivity and obedience to the Spirit is one of a missionary s greatest resources. What happens when we receive promptings from the Spirit but do not act on them?
6 May 11 Chapter 4, Pages Personal preparation and worthiness are necessary to teach by the Spirit. Missionaries can invite the Holy Ghost into their teaching. Does being in tune with the Holy Ghost guarantee that we will always be directed specifically in every aspect of our teaching? Why or why not? May 13 Chapter 4, Pages Missionaries should practice methods of teaching that edify. What invites the Spirit into our teaching? May 18 Chapter 5, Pages Prayer and pondering the scriptures prepare us to receive the influence of the Holy Ghost. Seeking to obtain the word. What does it means to ponder? When do you think missionaries should take time to study and ponder the scriptures? May 20 Chapter 5, Pages Obtaining the word by study and by preparing to teach. What is the central purpose of daily scripture study? May 27 Chapter 6, Pages Bearing testimony invites the Spirit into our teaching. Why is testifying and sharing feelings an important part of teaching? Obtaining the word by faith. God promises the Holy Ghost to those who treasure up His word. What does it mean to obtain the word by faith? Jun 1 Preach My Gospel: Chapter 2, Pages Live what you learn. Preparing to teach the lessons. Why do we need to continually treasure up the doctrines of the gospel of Jesus Christ? Jun 3 Chapter 7, Pages The three stages of Heavenly Father s plan: premortal, mortal, and postmortal. Jesus Christ is central to Heavenly Father s plan. How should knowledge of the plan of salvation affect the way we live? How is Jesus Christ central to the great plan of happiness? Jun 8 Chapter 7, Pages The Atonement of Jesus Christ makes it possible to overcome the obstacles of spiritual and physical death. Heavenly Father prepared degrees of glory for His children. What did Christ do to make it possible for us to overcome sin? What are the most important details investigators should know about the degrees of glory early in their study of our gospel message? Jun 10 Chapter 8, Pages The Lord provides truth, priesthood authority, ordinances, and organization through His prophets. Throughout history there has been a recurring pattern of apostasy and restoration. What is meant by the keys of the priesthood? In what ways is it helpful to understand the recurring pattern of apostasy and restoration throughout the dispensations?
7 Jun 15 Chapter 8, Pages The rejection of the Savior, His teachings, and priesthood authority resulted in the Apostasy of the New Testament Church. The European Reformation helped prepare the way for the final Restoration. In teaching about the apostasy to an investigator, how could you know whether or not the investigator understood your teaching? How was the Reformation a forerunner to the Restoration? Jun 17 Chapters 9, Pages God called Joseph Smith to be the prophet of the Restoration. Joseph Smith translated the Book of Mormon and brought forth other scriptures by the gift and power of God. What sequential pattern would help investigators understand and be better prepared to see how Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon fit into Heavenly Father s plan? Jun 22 Chapter 9, Pages The Book of Mormon helps bring people to Christ. In what ways is the Book of Mormon evidence of the Restoration? The Book of Mormon is convincing evidence of the Restoration. Under the direction of Jesus Christ, the priesthood and the Church were restored through His servants. How can we use the Book of Mormon to respond to objections investigators may have to the restored truths of the gospel? Jun 24 Chapters 10, Pages Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is essential to spiritual growth. What is it about faith in Jesus Christ that leads to salvation? RESEARCH PAPER DUE Faith can increase. What can we do to increase our trust in the Lord? Jun 29 Chapter 10, Pages Faith leads to conversion. Conversion includes repentance, baptism, and the reception of the gift of the Holy Ghost. Why is faith in Christ an important motivating element in conversion? Why is it vital that we emphasize the need for the gift of the Holy Ghost? Jul 1 Chapter 11, Pages Article: Robert K. Wagstaff, Preparing Emotionally for Missionary Service, Ensign, March 2011 Preparing for the physical and emotional demands of a fulltime mission. There are honorable alternatives to full-time missionary service for individuals excused by priesthood leaders because of their physical or emotional circumstance. Why is it important to determine if a missionary s physical and mental health is adequate for full-time missionary service? What does it means for someone to be honorably excused? Why is it important that a priesthood leader determines who is honorably excused from a full-time mission?
8 Jul 6 Chapter 12, Pages Preach My Gospel: Chapter 9, Pages Finding people to teach is a responsibility for missionaries and Church members. In reading D&C 123:12, what reason does this scripture give as to why many good people have not yet accepted the gospel? Jul 8 Chapter 12, Pages Preach My Gospel: Chapter 8, Pages Effective planning, goal setting, and time management help focus missionary efforts and increase success. Are there any risks in goal setting? What or why? How might prayer influence goal setting? Jul 13 Chapter 13, Pages Investigators must understand the covenants associated with saving ordinances and be willing to make and keep these sacred obligations. Helping investigators prepare for baptism, confirmation, and membership in the Church. Covenants and ordinances necessary for exaltation are received in temples. Why are converts required to make covenants to become members of the Lord s Church? What important points should missionaries help investigators understand about the making of covenants? Why must missionaries understand that baptism is not the end goal for their converts? Jul 15 Chapter 14, Pages Preach My Gospel: Chapter 6, Pages Developing Christ-like attributes. How can we develop attributes that will make me a more powerful and effective minister of the gospel of Jesus Christ? Jul 20 Chapter 14, Pages *No Reading or Journal due Missionaries are to serve God with all their heart, might, mind and strength (D&C 4:2). Obedience is a vital attribute in missionary work. What is one of the greatest secrets of missionary work? When it comes to mission rules, why is it better to obey than to question? JUL FINAL EXAM (Day/Time TBA) *No Reading or Journal due
9 SAMPLE REPORT FDREL 130: Mission Preparation Instructor: Fernando Castro Spring 2015 READING AND JOURNAL REPORT Name: John Doe Today s Date: 04/22/2015 Class Hour: TT 2:00-3:00 PM Assigned Reading: Chapter 1, Pgs Did you read it all? YES_ _ NO Doctrines and Principles The central doctrine of the gospel is the Atonement of Jesus Christ. (Student Manual, 2) The term gospel means good news. The good news is that Jesus Christ has made a perfect atonement for mankind that will redeem all mankind from the grave and reward each individual according to his/her works. (Bible Dictionary, 682) The work of bringing people unto Christ through faith in Christ, repentance, baptism, and the gift of the Holy Ghost is a part of the gathering of Israel in these latter days. (Student Manual, 4) Thoughts, Reflections, Insights, Connections, Ideas for Application I have often wanted to do the will of Heavenly Father and struggled to know for sure what He wanted me to do at different times I asked this question. One thing that I have learned recently and was confirmed with the reading assignment for today was that the Lord reveals His will through His living prophets. Our modern-day prophets and apostles are repeatedly inviting us to consider serving a mission. When we respond, the call serve a mission will come from the prophet in writing. I feel like that mission call letter would be like personalized scripture to me, much like the early revelations given to individuals through the Prophet Joseph Smith in the Doctrine and Covenants. Heavenly Father loves all His children and invites all to come unto Him and partake of the blessings of the gospel. That, to me, is the very purpose of serving a mission. Questions for Class Discussion Q. Where are the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (Israel) today? A. According to the Book of Mormon, in the last days, the House of Israel will be found scattered upon all the face of the earth, and also among all nations (1 Nephi 22: 3-4).
10 FDREL 130: Mission Preparation Instructor: Fernando Castro Spring 2015 Name: Class Hour: Attendance Points Tracking Log This log is included for your convenience to help you keep track of your attendance points You must report your attendance on I-Learn after each class to receive credit (See instructions on I-Learn) Date Assigned Reading Block April 20 Syllabus, Introduction April 22 Ch.1, 1-10; Elder Rasband s Talk April 27 Ch. 2, 13-16; Elder Bednar s Talk April 29 Ch. 2, May 4 Ch. 3, May 6 Ch. 3, May 11 Ch. 4, May 13 Ch. 4, May 18 Ch. 5, May 20 Ch. 5, May 27 Ch. 6, June 1 PMG, Ch. 2, June 3 Ch. 7, June 8 Ch. 7, June 10 Ch. 8, June 15 Ch. 8, June 17 Ch. 9, June 22 Ch. 9, June 24 Ch. 10, June 29 Ch. 10, July 1 Ch. 11, 89-95; Article from Ensign July 6 Ch. 12, ; PMG Ch. 9, July 8 Ch. 12, ; PMG Ch. 8, July 13 Ch. 13, July 15 Ch. 14, ; PMG Ch. 6, July 20 Ch. 14, On Time (1 Point) 25 maximum Late (0 Points) Absent (0 Points) Total Points: