Ventures offers three courses this fall

By Kendra Flory

The fall series from the Ventures in Christian Discipleship program at McPherson (Kan.) College began this morning, Sept. 17, with “Middle Knowledge: How Can Humans Have Free Will if God Knows Everything?” led by Kirk MacGregor, associate professor of Philosophy and Religion and Department Chair at McPherson.

The series continues on Nov. 12 with “Human Trafficking: A Call for the Church to Respond,” led by Vivek Solanky, and on Dec. 6 with “Beyond Burned Out to Boundaries and Balance” led by Jen Jensen.

To learn more about Ventures and to register for courses, visit Continuing education credit is available for attendance in real time through Ventures, and for viewing recordings through the Brethren Academy for Ministerial Leadership. All previous Ventures courses are available through the archive at

Human trafficking

“Human Trafficking: A Call for the Church to Respond” will be presented by Vivek Solanky and be held online on Saturday, Nov. 12, from 10 a.m. to 12 noon (Central time).

In the post-modern world, there is misconception that human trafficking no longer exists. But, in fact, hundreds of people are trafficked locally and globally, where they are abused, threatened, and exploited for commercial purposes. Among several types of trafficking, sex trafficking and cyber trafficking occur the most in the United States. As followers of Christ, we should not remain negligent and let young girls and women suffer at the hands of traffickers. Therefore, it is important to learn what human trafficking is, and how and why it happens. The focus of the course will be to discuss biblical, theological, and practical approaches to help survivors of human trafficking.

Solanky is pastor of Yellow Creek Church of the Brethren in Goshen, Ind. He completed a master’s degree in Brethren Studies in 2012 and a master of divinity in 2021 from Bethany Theological Seminary. He and his wife, Shefali, are natives of India and third generation Brethren.

Preventing congregational burnout

“Beyond Burned Out to Boundaries and Balance” will be presented by Jen Jensen online on Tuesday, Dec. 6 from 6-8 p.m. (Central time).

An increasing number of congregations are being served by ministers in part-time capacities. This structure creates both opportunities and tensions around congregational roles and tasks. Incorporating recent research on resilience in leadership published by the Seattle School of Theology and Psychology, Jensen will invite congregational leaders to consider how to build resilience and care for one another to create healthy balance in congregational patterns.

Jensen is program manager for the Thriving in Ministry Program of the Church of the Brethren’s Office of Ministry. Her role includes overseeing the Part-time Pastor, Full-time Church program. She is a member of Monitor Church of the Brethren in McPherson, but during the pandemic has been worshiping with Buckeye Church of the Brethren in Abilene, Kan. She has provided pulpit supply throughout Western Plains District and at congregations of other denominations in the McPherson area. She is a 2004 McPherson graduate, a graduate of the University of Nebraska, and completed a master of divinity degree from Bethany Theological Seminary in May 2022.

— Kendra Flory is advancement assistant at McPherson College. Find out more about the college at


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