The COVID-19 pandemic has added considerable stress across every aspect of the theological school, including the community’s spiritual and emotional well-being. As leaders, we not only provide vision and management for the institution, but we also contribute to creating an environment of care for the school community and its members.
Caring for the Community
- What opportunities for fellowship have faculty/staff had during the pandemic? How have faculty/staff participated in those opportunities?
- As the school moves toward the coming term, what opportunities for peer-to-peer counseling do you see for faculty/staff?
- In particular, how might faculty benefit from peer counseling as they face the coming term? Are any faculty/staff members especially talented or experienced at educating online, and how could they communicate their expertise to others in the school?
- Have students had opportunities to counsel one another?
- How have faculty/staff been mentoring students (spiritually and emotionally, not just academically) during the pandemic? How will these needs develop in the coming term?
- What avenues for bringing the school’s whole community together do you have (online worship services, small groups, prayer messaging, etc.)? Are these needs ongoing and expanding, or will they taper off naturally?
Caring for the Whole Person
- As the school leader, have you made time to talk to individual faculty/staff members?
- How have you praised and encouraged faculty/staff/student efforts to help the school sustain during the pandemic?
- How has the school been meeting unforeseen needs in its community – physical, spiritual, and emotional? Will these needs continue in the coming term, or will the school’s emergency role naturally come to a close?
- Looking ahead to the coming term, who will meet physical needs for individual students/faculty/staff?
- Again, looking ahead, who will meet spiritual needs for individual students/faculty/staff?
- How will spiritual and physical needs of students/faculty/staff change in the coming term?
Caring for Yourself
- As the school leader, you also need physical and spiritual care. Who is caring for you physically? Spiritually?
- Who in your community can you thank for supporting you personally?
- How will your personal needs change as the coming term approaches? Do you need to block time off, or do your responsibilities need to evolve so that you can sustain your own leadership productively and realistically?