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Master of Arts in Ministry Studies Catalog


Frederick Cardoza III, Ph.D.
Matthew S. Harmon, Ph.D.
Christine M. Hill, Ph.D.
Rock M. LaGioia, D.Min.
Tiberius Rata, Ph.D.
Thomas M. Stallter, D.Miss.
John Teevan, D. Min.
Trent Lambert, D.Min., Program Director


The MA in Ministry Studies is a 36-hour online program designed to provide professional and practical training for those who are pursing or are already involved in church ministry. This degree will prepare and equip ministry leaders with the necessary personal, professional, and theological training for your unique Christian calling within church ministry or human services.  The program goals are designed to augment and support the mission of Grace College and Seminary.

The program strikes a balance between foundational theological preparation and real-life ministry training. The program is designed to add to the body of knowledge gained in Grace’s undergraduate biblical studies programs and to train those who have not pursued undergraduate training in biblical studies for positions of support and leadership in the local church. Note that graduates of the Department of Biblical Studies may gain advanced standing in Grace Theological Seminary.


To assist in the theological training of staff and personnel for leadership in church.

Program Goals and Assessment

The program goals are designed to augment and support the mission of Grace College, which is:

An evangelical Christian community of higher education which applies biblical values in strengthening character, sharpening competence, and preparing for service

It also supports and promotes the purpose of the School of Ministry Studies, which is:

A learning community dedicated to teaching, training, and transforming the whole person for local church and global ministry.

The goals of the M.A. in Ministry Studies are that those who complete the degree will:

  1. Engage a process of critical evaluation of personal character, and cultural awareness needed to effectively lead in a ministry context.
  2. Be challenged to sharpen the competencies needed to interpret, understand, and effectively communicate the Word of God in a ministry context.
  3. Apply the knowledge gained throughout the program by engaging in real ministry directed learning tasks that demonstrate a preparation for service and apprehension of the principles and practices needed for effective ministry leadership.

Learning Outcomes
Learners will journal the practice of prayer in the context of personal, married, and ministry life recording progress in the discipline of prayer as part of the character of a ministry leader (G1)

  1. Learners will complete a self-assessment related to culture and spiritual formation that will result in a plan of action for implementation and assessment of needed areas of personal development (G1)
  2. Learners will construct a philosophy of ministry that will address key areas of ministry practice and discipline (G1)
  3. Learners will demonstrate sound biblical interpretation of a passage of Scripture and preparation of that passage for ministry proclamation (G2)
  4. Learners will evidence an understanding of sound biblical interpretation by designing a seminar for delivery in a ministry setting on how to study the Bible (G2)
  5. Learners will construct a personal theology which will be able to be used as a means of demonstrating a firm grasp of the nature of God, man, sin, salvation, ministry, and the future (G2)
  6. Learners will give evidence of the ability to practically perform ministry activities like a wedding, funeral, communion, or baptism as an evidence of the preparation for service (G3)
  7. Learners will give evidence of the critical need for godly leadership in ministry through successful completion of a series of papers reflecting critical areas of ministry leadership (G3)
  8. Learners will engage in an evaluation of their own cultural issues and biases that will expose the need for cultural sensitivity (G3)

On a yearly basis faculty will evaluate the embedded elements of this assessment to determine the effectiveness and level of mastery of those elements to the program.  A full assessment program has been developed with rubrics to measure the success of each element contained in the program.  Information will be used to better construct learning activities to ensure that each student is prepared for ministry in their particular field.


The M.A. in Ministry Studies offers six concentrations: Christian Ministry, Counseling, Technology, Leadership and Management, Spiritual Formation and Women’s Leadership Studies. The M.A. in Ministry Studies uses a modified cohort model. Courses are offered on a two-year rotation beginning in the fall. Students are automatically registered for their first session of classes. Students will self-register for all additional sessions. If students fail to register for at least one session during the fall or spring semester it will be necessary for them to contact the School of Professional and Online Education at 888.249.0533 or Students will complete twelve (12) 3-credit courses for a total of thirty-six (36) credit hours in a “cohort” based model.  “Cohort” means that students will join the program along with another group of students and continue with this same group, or cohort, for the entire program.  If students’ schedules change and they must skip a semester, or wish to take classes at a pace slower than the suggested two-year program, they may interact with other cohorts in the program.

All the online classes are 7or 8 weeks long.   Students who join a cohort in the fall complete two 8-week courses (August – December, 16 weeks), two 8-week courses in spring (January – May, 16 weeks), and two 7-week courses in the summer (May – August, 14 weeks).

Please view the institution’s Campus Calendar for more information.

Delivery Formats
The M.A. in Ministry Studies degree is delivered in a fully online format. The online format enables students to work full time and take one 8-week long course at a time. The format is flexible enough that students can complete their course assignments around their own specific weekly schedule.

Information regarding the technology and user-skill requirements for the online program is available on the Office of Information Technology page of the institution’s Web site.

Technology Requirements
Information regarding the technology and user-skill requirements are available on the Office of Information Technology page of the institution’s Web site.


This catalog functions as the M.A. in Ministry Studies handbook; however, students are asked to refer to the seminary handbook or catalog for guidelines related to community lifestyle expectations while enrolled in this program.

Notice of Nondiscrimination

Grace College and Seminary is a private, not-for-profit, faith-based exempt organization as described in Section 501 (c) 3 of the Internal Revenue code.  In compliance with applicable federal and state laws, Grace College and Seminary does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, sex, or disability in its administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs and activates, or in employment.

The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the Notice of Nondiscrimination:

Carrie Yocum, Title IX Coordinator and VP of Administration and Compliance
Grace College and Seminary
McClain 102
200 Seminary Drive
Winona Lake, IN 46590
574-372-5100 x6491

Inquiries may also be addressed to the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights at 400 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, DC  20202-1100.

Community Lifestyle Pledge

Students agree to show respect for the faith commitment that Grace practices and agree to abide by certain of the institution’s community guidelines (avoidance of disrespecting others, sexual misconduct, illegal drugs, gambling, coarse or obscene language, tobacco, alcoholic beverages, and such conduct) while on campus or engaged in Grace activities. The student understands that this extends to any advocacy initiatives in which the individual might participate while a Grace student.

Classification of Graduate Students

Full-time Students: Full-time students are those enrolled in a degree, diploma, or certificate program for at least 6 semester hours of credit during a regular semester.

Part-time Students: Part-time students are those enrolled in a degree, diploma, or certificate program for at least 3 hours of credit during a regular semester.

Auditors:  Students who desire to hear the lectures in a course without undertaking the coursework for credit may be admitted as auditors to selected courses by making proper application with the Online Admissions Office. Though no credits or grade points are involved, auditors are required to pay the appropriate fees and to meet class attendance requirements. Those who do not meet attendance requirements will receive the “grade” of “W,” whether or not they have officially withdrawn.

Auditing is not permitted for some courses. (This policy is at the discretion of the department or professor involved.) For some courses, auditing is permitted only if the student completes the course assignments as specified by the professor. An auditor may enroll for only one semester as a “full-time” auditor.

Program Admission and Completion

Graduates of Grace College’s Department of Biblical Studies or other accredited Christian liberal arts schools may qualify to gain advanced standing in the MAMS degree.

Admission Requirements

Students must have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university In order to be accepted into the program.

The admission application can be completed online and includes three references.

Official transcripts from all schools attended previously are also required for an application to be evaluated.

A maximum of 9 credit hours may be transferred into the program from graduate programs at other institutions. For transfer credit to be granted, the course or courses must be substantially equivalent to a course or courses in the Grace College MAMS program.

Application Expiration Date

Applications will expire one year from the date the application was received for admission. If the applicant does not enroll in the program within that time period, they will be required to complete a new application.

Degree Requirements

The M.A. in Ministry Studies consists of 12 three-hour courses or a total of 36 hours in ministry preparation. This graduate-level degree is offered through the college.

Ministry Foundation Courses: 18 Hours

MIN 5010       Theological Seminar 1
MIN 5020      Theological Seminar 2
MIN 5200      Old Testament Survey
MIN 5210       New Testament Survey
MIN 6010       Spiritual Formation
PM 5160        Discipleship Methods

Christian Ministry Concentration Courses: 18 Hours

PM 7120         Local Church Ministry in the 21st Century
MIN 5310       Ministry & Cultural Diversity
MIN 5320      Ministry Leadership
PM 5570       Communication in Ministry
PM 6170         Ministry Administration
MIN 5100       Bible Study Methods

Women’s Leadership Concentration Courses: 18 Hours

MIN 5110        Equipping Others for Ministry
MIN 5100      Bible Study Methods
MIN 5360     Women & Scripture
MIN 5600     Biblical Foundations of Leadership
MIN 5820      Soul Care & Leadership
MIN 5340     Ministry Preaching & Teaching  OR
MIN 6200      Counseling Common Problems

Counseling Concentration Courses: 18 Hours

PM 6160    Biblical Psychology
MIN 5500   Counseling Theories
PM 6060     Legal and Ethical Issues in Pastoral Counseling
MIN 5700   Counseling Methods & Techniques
MIN 5900   Pre-Marital & Marital Counseling
MIN 6200   Counseling Common Problems

Technology Concentration Courses: 18 Hours

PM 5180    Technology & Media in Ministry
PM 5190    Worship Arts
PM 6070    Creative Communication Strategies
PM 6180    Organizational Tools
PM 6240    Developing Tech Talent
PM 6840    Tech Ministry Internship

Tuition Costs and Refunds

For information about tuition costs and refunds please view the individual programs for pricing.

Grading Procedures

For information about grading policies and procedures, please view the institution’s Academic Policy Manual.


For additional information about admission requirements or course enrollment and completion, please contact the Online Enrollment Counselor, School of Professional and Online Education, Grace College, 200 Seminary Drive, Winona Lake, IN 46590 at 888.249.0533 or visit:


MIN 5010 Theological Seminar 1

An introduction to theology and its sources. Foundations will be laid in the areas of prolegomena, Bibliology, Theology Proper, Christology, Pneumatology, and Angelology. Three hours.

MIN 5020 Theological Seminar 2

An introduction to theology and its sources. Foundations will be laid in the areas of: Anthropology, Hamartiology, Soteriology, Ecclesiology, and Eschatology. Three hours.

MIN 5100 Bible Study Methods

This course is designed to introduce learners to the basics of biblical interpretation and practical biblical inquiry.  This course will cover essential elements of Hermeneutics as well as give practical training in Bible study methodology focusing on the historical-grammatical interpretative method in the inductive Bible study format. Three hours.

MIN 5200 Old Testament Survey

An introduction to the Old Testament with special reference to background, historical setting, literary composition, theology and message. After successfully completing this course, the student should be able to demonstrate a knowledge of background issues which introduce one to the study of various concepts of the Old Testament, the historical milieu of each Old Testament book studied, the purpose and general content of each Old Testament book studied, the use of the Old Testament in modern ministry, and the foundation the Old Testament provides for the New Testament. Three hours.

MIN 5210 New Testament Survey

This course introduces the New Testament with special reference to background, historical setting, literary composition, theology and message. After successfully completing this course, the student should be able to demonstrate a knowledge of background issues which introduce one to the study of various concepts of the New Testament, the historical milieu of each New Testament book studied, the purpose and general content of each New Testament book studied, the relationship between the New and Old Testaments, and the use of the New Testament in modern ministry. Three hours.

MIN 5310 Ministry & Cultural Diversity

This course is intended to provide students with a basic understanding of the elements of culture and how they affect biblical ministry in intercultural and multicultural contexts. It is designed to help Christian workers become more effective in those contexts as their understanding permits them to shape their ministry to penetrate other cultures more deeply and, therefore, apply God‘s Word more accurately. Three hours.

MIN 5320 Ministry Leadership

Through the use of reading and writing assignments, online discussions, pastoral interviews, and a self-assessment and action plan paper, the following leadership topics will be covered: servant leadership, mentoring, visionary leadership, and leading as a change agent. Eight weeks of course work will be conducted independently and on-line, culminating in a final paper. Three hours.

MIN 5340 Ministry Preaching and Teaching

This course combines both theory and practice. It introduces a functional methodology of organizing and developing the elements of a sermon. It examines issues of bridging exegesis and exposition as well as the application of biblical truth and the effective delivery to listeners. Approximately one-third of the course is devoted to a lab setting where lessons and sermons are videotaped and critiqued. Three hours.

MIN 6010 Spiritual Formation

This course investigates the biblical and personal foundations of spiritual growth known theologically as sanctification. It is designed to help the learner understand the impact of family history, personal development and life experiences on one‘s theological outlook, emotional maturity, relational patterns, moral decisions and ministry effectiveness. Through personal prayer projects, experiential learning and small group interaction, learners will gain a richer sense of self-awareness in order to open more deeply to the love and truth of God. This integrative course attempts to connect theological truth to life in order to explore God‘s design for growth and how the individual might cooperate within the context of a developing relational Christian spirituality. Three hours.

Women’s Leadership

MIN 5110 Equipping other for ministry:

Equipping others for ministry is a part of our calling from God (Eph. 4:11-13). But how do we work with others so that we reach maturity together? This course will help you see that ministry is not just about doing the ministry yourself, but teaching others to join you in various arenas of ministry. You will learn about God’s equipping ministry in your own life, and be challenged to imitate His methods of entrusting others with redemptive work through His Spirit. The class will explore various methods of equipping others, including mentoring, coaching and modeling, and will address the challenges of recruiting, training and retaining volunteers or key staff members. Three hours.

MIN 5360 Women in Scripture
Students will explore the value of women as disclosed in special revelation, beginning with Genesis and the “imago dei”. They will research the backdrop of the ancient world in order to understand the various roles women played in the OT in revealing the heart of God and His plan for redemptive history. They will investigate ways that Jesus elevated the status of women and how NT passages describe the function of women within the Christian community. Using modern theories on the role of women—complementarian and egalitarian—students will seek to define a biblical approach to contemporary questions about the role of women. In addition, students will analyze current culture and make recommendations for how God’s Word speaks into the lives of women today. Three hours.

MIN 5820 Soul Care in Leadership:

This class will examine how to journey with others in the midst of their questions and pain. Instead of trying to fix others in pain, soul care attempts to incarnate the presence of God in the life of another and allow God to use you to be his hands and feet. Part of this process is learning how to listen to the Spirit of God and attend to another in the midst of their journey. The learner will have the opportunity to see and reject patterns of self-talk (based on the flesh) in order to embrace Spirit-led patters of soul talk. The care of souls is an interpersonal part of ministry leadership that often gets overlooked in our program-driven church context. This class will help to equip ministry leaders in their role as shepherd to the flock entrusted to their care.

MIN 5600 Biblical Foundations of Leadership:

This course looks at the life of Jesus to learn from Him as the Master Teacher, Leader and Discipler. Students will explore Scripture and the lives of other godly men and women to gain a composite picture of leadership that addresses heart issues in the lives of people they will lead. Leadership from a biblical perspective will be countercultural and address issues of pride vs. humility, how we view failure/success and taking initiative in a Spirit-driven process. Students will have the opportunity for hands on integration of theory with practice as they process the course concepts in life with others in a relational context of ministry.


MIN 5500 Counseling Theories
In this course, students will examine today’s predominant counseling theories in order to develop their own biblical framework in which they will provide counsel to others. The focus of the course is to help discern God’s pathway to proper biblical counseling. Three hours.

MIN 5700 Counseling Methods and Techniques
This course will examine the various skills, methods and techniques used by a Christian or Pastoral Counselor to effectively minister to those being counseled. An aspect of the course is how to use the Bible and prayer in counseling, and direction on when to refer to other professionals. Three hours.

MIN 5900 Pre-Marital and Marital Counseling
This course will examine how to effectively engage in pre-marital counseling to help couples prepare for marriage and to help couples who are struggling in their marriage. Various theories, skills and techniques of marriage counseling will be discussed. Three hours.

MIN 6200 Counseling Common Problems
This course will examine how to counsel people who encounter negative emotions such as anxiety, depression, guilt and fear and help navigate these issues from a biblical perspective. The focus will be on how God can help people deal with the emotional side of their lives by looking at Scripture and allowing God to move them into places of spiritual transformation. Three hours.

PM 6160 Biblical Psychology

This course will examine the relationship between the fields of psychology and theology. A theology of “integration” will be presented, along with discussions concerning specific “psychological” topics (i.e. personality, sensation/perception, self-esteem, etc.) from a biblical vantage point. A biblical discussion of depression and anxiety will be an aspect of this course, along with how one would use this material to counsel/minister to others.  Three hours.

PM 6060 Legal and Ethical Issues in Pastoral Counseling

This course is designed to develop a broad biblical knowledge base, critical thinking and ethical decision-making skills for pastoral counselors. A focus will be given to a high standard of personal and professional ethics to enhance pastoral counseling that is above reproach. Three hours. Three hours.


PM 5180 Technology & Media in Ministry

This course addresses the ever changing media technology challenges that ministries face today. This course identifies the ever changing and complex landscape of media technology in a media-centric society and how ministries can use modern media effectively to communicate the life-changing message of Jesus Christ. Three hours.

PM 5190 Worship Arts

This course is designed to address corporate worship within the context of media technology. This course acknowledges the need for technology to accomplish tasks as well as produce creative media rich environments for worship experiences. Three hours.

PM 6070 Creative Communication Strategies

A comprehensive approach to building mission-driven and culturally-sensitive ministry communications. Involves integration of traditional, social, and digital media for providing relevant information, inspiration, instruction, marketing, and promotion to ministry stakeholders. Three hours.

PM 6180 Organizational Tools

A comprehensive sweep of organizational and educational technology for more efficient ministry and effective teaching in 21st Century ministry.  Includes identification of ministry-related categories in which technology may be useful, in addition to investigating specific tools (software, hardware, services) that can meet practical ministry needs. Three hours.

PM 6240 Developing Tech Talent

An overview of the biblical importance of equipping and its relationship to ministry teams in the local church.  Special attention given to identifying, cultivating, training, and deploying skilled teams of tech leaders for ministry. Three hours.

PM 6840 Tech Ministry Internship

The practical application and integration of technology tools within a ministry setting.  Includes some topically-guided course content, in addition to a required practical internship and application hours.  This internship may be a paid or volunteer role, and involves direct interaction with an onsite-or-off-ministry-site technology-ministry specialist or media minister. Three hours.