Bibliography of Bioethics Curricula

Colson, Charles, and Nigel Cameron. Playing God: Facing the Everyday Ethical Dilemma of Biotechnology.

Group Publishing, 2004—OUT OF PRINT, limited availability through Amazon. 
Materials: Mixed Media (Print: Leader's Guide, Participant's guide, manuscript booklet; CD: Audio; VHS)
Topics: Intro to Bioethics; Image of God; Christian Ethics; Knowledge & Technology; Cloning; Stem Cell Research; Eugenics; Artificial Intelligence; Abortion; In Vitro Fertilization; Euthanasia; Facing the Future.
# of Lessons: 12
Audience/Audience Level: Adult/Introductory         
Leader readiness: Introductory

Each session combines video and audio commentary followed by exploring biblical principles and other relevant information aimed at finding practical Christian application in the everyday lives of participants. While out of print, the issues and arguments are largely unchanged from the development of this curriculum and remains just as valid. There is strong emphasis to assert the Christian worldview in the face of ever continuing biotechnology, such that "Technology should always be tethered to moral truth"—a timeless exhortation for all Christians as we continue to encounter new developments and techniques that force moral and ethical consideration.

 

Colson, Charles, Joni Eareckson Tada, and Brit Hume. Doing the Right Thing, Part IV- "What Does it Mean to Be Human?"

Zondervan, 2011. www.colsoncenter.org/ethics
Premium Group Study Kit includes 8 participants guides, 6 individual DVDs Cost: $149.99. ISBN: 978-0-310-61916-1
The Premium Family/Individual Kit included 6 individual DVDs and 1 Participant's Guide.  Cost : $89.99, regular price.
Audience/Audience Level: Adult/ Introductory       
Expected Leader Readiness: intermediate knowledge.

Guests and panelists (Charles Colson, Dr. Robert George, Brit Hume, Dr. Christopher Hook, Fr. Robert Sirico) discuss the topic of personhood and its implications for the embryo, the severely neurologically impaired, and utilitarian thinking that aims for the greatest good for the greatest number without regard to the status of the most vulnerable members of the human family Part IV focuses on various bioethical situations that challenge the traditional definition of "person."  Special emphasis is given to the moral status of embryos and that of the severely neurologically damaged person. The current conflict wages between utilitarian thinking that aims for the greatest good for the greatest number without regard to the status of the most vulnerable members of the human family and the view that all human beings are made in the image of God and therefore should not be used as means to another end but as themselves valuable and worthy of dignity.

 

Bioethics and Compassion

Christianity Today International, 2007. $77.35 available by download. http://biblestudies.stores.yahoo.net/bico.html
Material: Print as word file.
Topics: value of human life; care for children with special needs; Christian view of the disabled; life and death decisions; when to stop treatment; national health care; souls on ice;  moral battle for stem cells; stem cell therapy research; extensions of genetic testing; human cloning; genetically modified foods; a Christian view of the death penalty.
# of lessons: 13
Audience:  Adult/Introductory
Expected Leader Readiness:  Introductory

One strength of this study is its flexibility as it can be used for personal use, a Sunday School class or a small group study or week class. The Leader's Guide indicates that a single study or the entire series can be used. This study covers a wide range of bioethical topics, with clarity. Each lesson is followed by thoughtful questions to foster further consideration and discussion on the social and spiritual implications of these bioethical issues and technologies. Two studies, however, on genetically modified foods and the Christian view on the death penalty step outside of traditional bioethical topics and seem awkwardly included with the rest of the lessons. Each lesson includes a key article, many originally published by Christianity Today or one of its other publications. Several lessons point to additional resources for further exploration.

 

Cranston, Robert, M.D. Bioethics and Today's Christian: Finding Your Way Through the Morass of Today's Overwhelming Medical Ethical Dilemmas.

CrossBooks, 2010.
ISBN:978-1-6150-7616-1
Materials: Softcover book.
Topics: bioethics and why it matters; abortion; infertility and assisted reproduction; dilemmas caused by advanced genetic information; quality of life vs. sanctity of life; Christian response to AIDS; organ transplantation issues; futility of care; physician assisted suicide and euthanasia; health care rationing; stem cell technology
# of lessons: 14
Audience/Audience Level: Adult/introductory.
Expected Leader Readiness: Intermediate knowledge.

The author uses the Wesleyan grid of Scripture, Reason, Tradition and Experience to introduce bioethics and consequentially, the multiplicity of ethical issues that have arisen. Prayer requests in each lesson (that relate to the topic), a brief test to assess pre- and post- class and glossary are aids. The chapter concerning organ transplantation focuses on the very complex issues of "brain death" and "non-heart-beating donors," topics best left to those advanced in their study of bioethics.

 

Eareckson Tada, Joni and Steve Bundy. Beyond Suffering: A Christian View on Disability Ministry, Study Guide.

Christian Institute on Disability, 2011. $40.00.
ISBN: 9780983848400v
Materials: Soft cover book with CD-ROM
Topics: Definition, and scope of disability; theology of suffering and evil; God's sovereignty and hope; major challenges for the church to minister to adults and children with special needs; introduction to bioethics.
# of Lessons: 16
Audience/Audience Level: Intermediate Knowledge
Expected Leader Readiness: Leaders for this curriculum must first take the Beyond Suffering course and receive a Certificate of Completion. For further information on course offerings, go to http://www.joniandfriends.org/BYS/

This is not merely a study but a college-level course that explores the theological and practical foundations of Christian disability. Subject matter comes from distinctly Christian perspective to raise up leaders in the church to begin or better their ministry to those with special needs.Joni and Friend Christian Institute on Disability have partnered with Indiana Wesleyan University to offer undergraduate and graduate credit for the online Beyond Suffering Certificate Course. More information found at http://www.joniandfriends.org/students/college-credit/

 

_____. Beyond Suffering: A Christian View on Disability Ministry, Leaders Guide.

Christian Institute on Disability, 2011.
Price: $45.00
ISBN: 9780983848417
Materials: Hard cover book with 16 lesson plans; 2 DVDs, 1 CD-ROM
Topics: Definition, and scope of disability; theology of suffering and evil; God's sovereignty and hope; major challenges for the church to minister to adults and children with special needs; introduction to bioethics.
# of lessons: 16
Audience/Audience Level: Advanced Knowledge
Expected Leader Readiness: Advanced Knowledge. NOTE: Leaders for this curriculum must first take the Beyond Suffering course and receive a Certificate of Completion. For further information on course offerings, go to http://www.joniandfriends.org/BYS/

 

_______. Beyond Suffering: A Christian View on Disability Ministry, Study and Leader's Guide.

Christian Institute on Disability. Christian Institute on Disability, 2013.
Price $14.99
Materials: Electronic as iBooks edition. MultiMedia with video, adaptive screen magnification and VoiceOver© technology. Available on iTunes for use with iPad.
Features: Multi-touch textbook with 16-lesson study guide, reflection questions, videos, interactive graphics, 49 additional readings, and complete leader's materials with lesson plans, PowerPoint presentations, and promotional resources.
Topics: Definition, and scope of disability; theology of suffering and evil; God's sovereignty and hope; major challenges for the church to minister to adults and children with special needs; introduction to bioethics.
# of lessons: 16
Audience/Audience Level: Advanced Knowledge Expected Leader Readiness: Advanced Knowledge. NOTE: Leaders for this curriculum must first take the Beyond Suffering course and receive a Certificate of Completion. For further information on course offerings, go to http://www.joniandfriends.org/BYS/

 

Kilner, John F. and C. Ben Mitchell. Does God Need Our Help? Cloning, Assisted Suicide, and Other Challenges in Bioethics, The Vital Questions Series.

Tyndale House Publishers, 2003. Out of print; both book and leader's guide available through CBHD.
ISBN: 0-8423-7446-9
Print: Hardcover book and Leader's Guide.
Topics: Hippocratic and Judeo-Christian historical tradition in medicine; various approaches to ethics in relation to healthcare; the difference between contemporary bioethical approaches and the Biblically-based bioethics; embryonic dangers of abortion, stem cell research in light of perceived societal benefits; end-of-life care and resource allocation in light of financial realities; meaning of true compassionate care in difficult end-of-life situations; wisdom in use of various reproductive technologies to remedy infertility; basics of cloning and its impact upon human condition; future possibilities and challenges for human beings with use of new medicine and biotechnology.
# of Lessons:10
Audience/Audience Level:, adult/introductory knowledge
Expected Leader Readiness: Intermediate knowledge

The wide scope of biotechnology upon all human beings, its potential for good and ill, and the complexity of decision making from a Christian perspective is explored in this study with discussion questions at the end of the book. The leaders' guide offers suggestions in leading a study on this challenging subject and provides additional resources for further study.

 

LCMS World Relief and Human Care. In the Beginning: A Collection of Essays and Bibles Studies on the Sanctity of Early Human Life.

Concordia Publishing House, 2007. $7.99.
ISBN 978-0-7586-1502-2
Print: Bible Study
Topics: Creation: Made in God's Image; Justification: Life through His Word; Incarnation: Being Like Us in Every Way; Conception; A Medical Analysis of Early Life; Science: The Truth and Hype about Stem Cells; Defining Terms: The Importance of Vocabulary in Pursuing Ethics; Vocation: Serving God by Serving Our Neighbor—For Life; God's Two Kingdoms: Honoring Life's Value in Our World.
# of lessons: 8
Audience/Audience Level: Intermediate
Expected Leader Readiness: Intermediate Knowledge

Each essay from this Lutheran Church Missouri Synod curriculum explores a particular theological concept which pertains to early human life and is followed by a study that explores the theological implications using the Bible. These studies build upon the essay to support a God-centered approach to human life in its earliest form. An experienced teacher may be able to foster discussion with these studies, but for the most part, they are simple and do not lend themselves to deep reflection and robust group discussion.

 

Riggan, Kirsten. Framing Bioethics.

2009
Price: Free download from Everyday Bioethics.
Materials: Printed lessons downloaded from http://www.everydaybioethics.org/bioethics-curricula
Topics: value and dignity of human life; beginning of Life; genetics; stem cell research and cloning; end-of-life issues.
# of lessons: 5
Audience: Adult/Introductory
Expected Leader Readiness: Intermediate knowledge.

The author gives the leader encouragement regarding the responses they may arouse in the course of the study and provides ample, graded supplemental reading. With five lessons, this study is limited in its depth of bioethical issues, yet offers a solid base for both leaders and students interested in learning what bioethics is about.

 

Wilken, Dr. Todd. Where Death and Life Meet.

2005
Free download in either  PDF or Word format. 
URL:   http://www.lutheransforlife.org/article/where-death-and-life-meet-a-bible-study/
Material: handout, print
Topic: Christ's victory over death, but in embryonic life, death makes itself known in embryonic stem cell research, abortion, euthanasia and other situation. Emphasis on Jesus' dominion over death.
Audience level Jr. High to Adult/Introductory
Expected Leader Readiness: Introductory

This resource is a single lesson "Bible study" in handout form. Questions are simple, leading, without opening for discussion or attention to explaining scientific terms and technologies mentioned.

 

Lamb, James. Connecting the Creation Dots.

2004.
Free download; both Leader's Guide and Student Guide in handout
Materials: print
URL: http://www.lutheransforlife.org/article/connecting-the-creation-dots/
Single lesson
Audience level Jr. High to Adult/Introductory
Expected Leader Readiness: Introductory

This study focuses upon Jesus as the Word of life, death as result of sin and discussion about purpose of human life created by God in Genesis account. Content winds in and out of Scripture with leading questions and no opportunity for robust discussion.

 

Lutherans For Life. For Life

2012.
Price: Study Guide free; DVD $5.00 from Concordia Publishing House (CPH) http://www.cph.org/p-20112-for-life-dvd.aspx?SearchTerm=For%20Life%20DVD
Materials: print, download study guide; DVD
URL: http://www.lutheransforlife.org/sermon/for-life-2012/
Topic: Meaning of "pro-life" and the work and message of Lutherans for Life (LFL) Mission of this "pan-Lutheran organization" (although it is also stated LFL is "not affiliated with any particular denomination) is "to witness to the sanctity of human life through education based on the Word of God."
Single lesson
Audience level Jr. High to Adult/Introductory
Expected Leader Readiness: Introductory

Study guide is promotional material for Lutherans for Life, which focuses on truth "every life is made by God, and God loves life." Not a study but promotional "lesson and DVD' of the message and mission of Lutherans for Life.

 

Lamb, James. The Handiwork of God.

2012
Materials: print color(or text) brochure and study guide by download from http://www.lutheransforlife.org/sermon/the-handiwork-of-god/. DVD can be ordered at CPH, or be viewed on YouTube.
Price: Print materials free on download. Color brochures $0.50; DVD $5.00 from Concordia Publishing House (http://www.cph.org/p-20599-handiwork-of-god-dvd.aspx?SearchTerm=handiwork)
Topics: Man as God's Creator; comparison between world and Biblical perspective on human life, death and sustanence.
# of lessons: unknown. Only study guide on download is lesson 2.
Audience level Jr. High to Adult/Introductory
Expected Leader Readiness: Introductory

Questions are answered in Scriptures given to student to read. While desired outcome of discussion is that "EVERY human life has value because of what God has done with his hands," there is no opportunity for substantive questions and discussion.

 

Lamb, James. The Abundant Life.

2013.
Materials:  study guide by download from http://www.lutheransforlife.org/sermon/the-abundant-life-a-bible-study/. DVD can be ordered at CPH, or be viewed on YouTube. Access to CPH, YouTube and download from URL.
Price: DVD $5.00; free viewing on YouTube. Study guide is free download.
URL:  http://www.lutheransforlife.org/sermon/the-abundant-life-a-bible-study/
Topic: human suffering, comparing world's view and "the Word's view.
Single Lesson
Audience level Jr. High to Adult/Introductory
Expected Leader Readiness: Introductory

The only mention of pro-life or bioethical import is the message to trust in God when we suffer and do not cause death of others (embryo, terminally or chronically ill people) to escape suffering.

 

Lamb, James. The Other End of Life.

2012.
Materials: Print- study guide from URL; DVD-- The Other End of Life, $5.00; video can be viewed on YouTube with link on this website.
Price: Print material- study guide, free; DVD $5.00
URL: http://www.lutheransforlife.org/sermon/the-other-end-of-life/
Topic:  Suffering, showing compassion and value of life, even in the face of death.
Single Lesson
Audience level Jr. High to Adult/Introductory
Expected Leader Readiness: Introductory

Noted as Lesson 9 in Equipping the Church for Life series. This discusses death, suffering and how to make treatment decisions at the end-of-life. Advance directives and "homework" (application of lesson) could lead to robust discussion of the Christian's hope and how to show compassion care to those who are dying and their families.

 

Lamb, James. Stem Cell Research and Cloning 101: A Primer.

Materials: Print- study guide from URL; LFL brochure Cloning: Understanding the Basics (recommended in discussion question study guide) order from CPH, $0.50, or free text download from http://www.lutheransforlife.org/article/cloning-understanding-the-basics/; DVD Stem Cell Research and Cloning 101: A Primer, $5.00, order at CPH.
Price: Print material- study guide, free; DVD Stem Cell Research and Cloning 101: A Primer, $5.00 from CPH.
URL:  http://www.lutheransforlife.org/sermon/stem-cell-research-and-cloning-101-a-primer/
Topic: basic facts of stem cell research and cloning; adult stem cells vs. embryonic stem cells(ESCR); somatic cell nuclear transfer/cloning; application of Scripture to these technologies.
Audience level Jr. High to Adult/Introductory
Expected Leader Readiness: Introductory

Discussion Question Guide lists answers. Recommended reading source for class is Cloning: Understanding the Basics. Lists Bible passages "to show why Christians oppose ESCR and cloning. No discussion of personhood or unintended consequences. Simplistic approach to a challenging and difficult subject.