Message from the Director
The M.A. in Transformational Urban Leadership (MATUL) is a unique academic urban ministry program focused on the faith-rooted transformation of marginalized urban communities. MATUL students focus on the disciplines and practices of theology, church planting, urban studies, social entrepreneurship, advocacy, and related fields to prepare for callings in holistic transformation within the City. Students are expected to live within a marginalized community throughout the program, learning to relate in solidarity with the communities and neighbors they hope to partner with for transformation.
MATUL students do most of the their studies online, with semester intensives at Azusa Pacific University’s Los Angeles Regional Site, located in historic Koreatown, a bustling multicultural neighborhood. During the first portion of the program, students complete core courses establishing an appreciation for the complexity of the City and its place in the Christian narrative. These foundational courses also provide tools for engaging the City, with particular emphasis on the Kingdom of God’s vision for transformation.
During the second phase of the program, students integrate their foundational studies with experiential learning. In a process that combines online academic study with active community engagement, participants seek the peace and justice of the City with practicums in local ministries, nonprofits, and social enterprises. To culminate their MATUL experience, students develop a final project on a topic significant to their community.
As we continue into the 21st century, an increasingly urban century, the Church and world require leaders prepared for the work of holistic urban renewal. If you have a calling to transform cities, come join us.
Michael A. Mata, M.Div.