Theological Education for Leadership (TEL)

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Welcome to Theological Education for Leadership (TEL)

Registration for 2014 courses is now open.

This program of special courses and seminars provides progressive, accessible Christian theological education year round for clergy, laity, and spiritual seekers from diverse racial/ethnic communities. Retaining an important emphasis of its antecedent, the Certificate of Ministry Studies (CMS) program, TEL is multicultural in its design and focus. It may be engaged at the level that works for you - for personal spiritual formation, lay leadership training, professional growth, or continuing education.

Using PSR's "flexible learning" approach, the TEL fosters a strong and supportive community environment while enabling participation locally or at a distance through online learning. A carefully selected curriculum of online and face-to-face experiences may be engaged individually, or as part of various non-graduate-level certificates.

 We hope that you will join our growing TEL community. Check us out on Facebook here.



Rev. Janice Sommerville

Program Coordinator, TEL and
Community & Continuing Education / 510-849-8284

Praise for TEL

CTEL graduate Vickey Gibbs

"TEL offers the best of PSR's professors, consultants, alumni and community partners in providing a world class learning experience as well as creating a community in which we pray, cry, worship, share, preach, rejoice, sing, dance, grieve and uplift with those who journey with us. From Uganda to the US, we know that we will never journey alone again, in life or in learning."

Vickey Gibbs, Curriculum Specialist, Office of Emerging Ministries, UFMCC
Certificate of Theological Education for Leadership (CTEL), 2013

"I will be able to use the material that was given to me for this course throughout the rest of my life. There is no limit to what I can learn and am capable of learning now that I have taken this course."

CTEL Student,Course Evaluation

Don't Miss Our Upcoming Courses!

Theological Thinking: God-Talk for Community Building

with Dr. Jay E. Johnson
September 23 - September 30, 2014 

Course Description 

Theology invites us deeper into an adventure with God and with each other. Theology also provides tools for that adventure as we explore the mystery of our own lives in relationship to the God who creates, redeems, and sustains us. In this course, we’ll consider the many forms of theological language – expressed with songs,poetry,prayer,arguments, laughter, tears, sermons, laments, intimate conversations,and so much more. We’ll also consider how such “God-talk” can help us build communities of faith, hope, and love in the world. We’ll do this through interactive exercises with Scripture, multi-media “lectures” on Christian traditions, engagements with various art forms, and shared investigations of the many questions each of us has about who God is and who we are in relationship with God.

Click here for more information

UMOJA: The Bible, Sexuality & Gender for African-American Faith Communities

with Rev. Roland Stringfellow
October 9, 16, 23, 30 and Nov. 6, 2014

Course Description 

“UMOJA” is a Swahili word that means unity. African-American communities, however, are deeply divided over homosexuality. Many families and congregations are unsure about supporting loved-ones who come out as lesbian,gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT), especially if and when church authority teach to the contrary. Many are brokenhearted and confused in the midst of hurtful words and damaged relationships. This 5-week series is designed to help repair, restore and rediscover the kinship of families and churches.

Click here for more information

TEL Partners with the MCC L.E.A.D. Program

The Office of Community & Continuing Education at PSR is proud to partner with the MCC Office of Formation & Leadership to provide course offerings for those lay persons and leaders taking their spiritual, theological, and ministry development to new levels!

These online classes meet the criteria for required courses and electives in Public Speaking, Organizational Development, Christian Education, and Essentials in Worship Leading in the MCC L.E.A.D. Program.

Lay leaders enrolled in the L.E.A.D. Program register for each class at the same discounted rate as PSR's Certificate of Theological Education for Leadership (CTEL) students.  


Christian Education - Sept. 9 - 16, 2014
Worship - Oct.14 - 21, 2014
Preaching - Jan. 13 - 20, 2015
Church Administration - Feb. 23, 2015
For more information about the TEL program, contact 510/849-8284 or

Announcing "That They May All Be One"
TEL-UCC Partnership in Online LearningUCC logo

We are excited that the TEL program offers a cycle of ONLINE courses in UCC Studies. The one-week course in UCC History taught by Rev. Carol Barriger is coming up in July. These classes have been designed to create an opportunity for lay leaders in the UCC, people in churches considering joining the UCC, and persons seeking Authorized Ministry (with permission of their Committee on Ministry) to gain a working knowledge of the United Church of Christ. 

The TEL UCC Identity Series was developed under the guidance of PSR faculty member, Dr. Randi Walker.  The classes utilize both the Adobe Connect live seminar and Moodle online, self-paced formats to teach the material.  Participants can enroll for the individual courses or the entire series.  Please contact us for more details!

UCC History - TBD

UCC Polity - TBD

UCC Ethos - TBD

UCC Theology - TBD  

Contact Us

We would love to hear from you about your interest in individual courses, or certificates in the TEL program.

If your community has special needs or interests, let us know and we will work with you to develop programs that meet your needs.

Use our contact form to get in touch.  We will keep you up to date on TEL developments and let you know when the final course schedule is released and registration opens.