Path to Ordination

Programs for Completing the Course of Study for Ordination as Elder and Deacon

Students may fulfill the educational requirements through a variety of curriculums and institutions:

Approved Curriculums through Nazarene Educational Institutions: All of our Nazarene institutions for higher learning have curriculums approved for the course of study. These are both on the undergraduate level (such as Olivet Nazarene University and Nazarene Bible College) or graduate level (Nazarene Theological Seminary). Students graduating from these institutions with the appropriate majors can be assured they have completed the educational requirements for ordination. This is actually the preferred and best method for receiving a ministerial education. 

Online Program from Nazarene Bible College: NBC has an excellent online program through which a person can complete both an academic degree and the ordination requirements. The advantage of this program is that a student does not have to relocate to receive an accredited bachelor’s degree for ministry.

Other Institutions of Higher Learning: It is possible to complete most of the requirements for ordination by completing coursework through other colleges and institutions. However, it is very important for such students to have their curriculum regularly reviewed by the district board of ministerial studies. Students should also be aware that it is unlikely that all requirements for ordination can be completed through coursework taken at a non-Nazarene educational institution.

The Modular Curriculum for Ministerial Preparation: The office of clergy development has developed a modular curriculum designed to be meet the needs of prospective ministers for whom attending an institution of higher learning is not possible. The modular curriculum consists of 24 classes provided through the office of clergy development at our denominational headquarters. Clergy development provides curriculum from which approved teachers may teach a class. These teachers must be approved through the Ministerial Board of Studies. Currently, the Michigan District does not offer regular approved classes. However, there will be classes made available from time to time and will be listed on this website. 

Online Education: Northwest Nazarene University and Nazarene Bible College both offer the modular course of study through an online program on the internet. It will be the responsibility of the student to submit proof of satisfactory completion of the class to the secretary of the District Board of Ministerial Studies.

Supervised Ministry Experience Requirement

All students in the course of study through the district curriculum will be required to complete the supervised ministry experience module before being graduated from the course of study. Students expecting to be ordained must enroll in the supervised ministry experience module beginning the summer before. Contact Tim Harmon for more information. 

The following are links to very valuable information. 


Handbook for Christian Ministry

Clergy Education

Responding to the Call

Obtaining a Local License

Source Book for Ordination

Modular Courses

Sequencing the Modules

Validation of Courses

Degree Programs

Non Degree-Programs