Date of Award


Document Type


Primary Advisor

Dr. Ronald K. Bruner

Secondary Advisor

Dr. James W. Thompson

Committee Reader

Dr. Carson E. Reed


The purpose of this project was to produce a guiding document of virtues that represented the type of Christ-like character qualities desired in youth at Cookeville First United Methodist Church. The six virtues chosen in the document represent a comprehensive vision for character growth over the course of students’ time in the program. To provide a theological foundation for this project, I examined the idea that virtue has a narrative shape where words find their meaning in a story. For our purposes, this story is generally stated as the story of Jesus at first but is then seen as best articulated in the theology of Paul, specifically, Rom 12 and Phil 2:1-11. These two texts provide an understanding of how Paul wanted his churches to be communities of moral discernment. This purpose was finally achieved by leading a purposive sample of eight members of the congregation through eight sessions where ideas on virtue, character, and ministry were engaged and debated, culminating in the choosing and defining of six virtues. The outcomes of this project were then evaluated from a triangulation of perspectives: an outside expert, insider participants, and the participant researcher. Finally, the intervention was mined for possible contributions to the larger Christian community and ways it could add to the larger discussion on virtue and character growth.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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