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Pastoral Ministry

  • Available as major (B.S. degree). This major has been approved by the Course of Study Advisory Committee to meet the education requirements for ordination as an elder in the Church of the Nazarene.
    Administrator, trainer, negotiator, counselor, teacher, preacher, communicator, researcher, servant. Few careers require as much flexibility and versatility as a career in pastoral ministry. Are you ready for the challenge? And the rewards?

  • We are here to help prepare you — for the challenges and the rewards — as you answer God’s call to pastoral ministry.

    In pastoral ministry, you will be a key influencer in the lives of Christian believers. The more in tune you are with the Bible, your own faith and the reality of people’s lives in today’s world, the more effective you will be.

    Serving as a pastor is more than preaching a message on Sunday morning. As a pastor, you are called to walk with people through their best and worst experiences — as well as to encourage them to grow in their faith during routine sameness of life.

    You also become the role model for Christian leadership. High expectations are common, and gratitude is often scarce.

    But the rewards of pastoral ministry far outweigh the challenges. Baptizing a seven-year-old who just accepted Christ. Joining a young couple in marriage. Sharing the Gospel with a man in a hospital bed. Receiving a new insight from God about a Bible passage you’ve read many times before.

    At Olivet, you can: 

    • Study Biblical hermeneutics, cross-cultural ministry, homiletics, Christian theology, pastoral care/counseling.
    • Learn from professors who once served as pastors of congregations.
    • Volunteer for a variety of jobs with area congregations to get firsthand ministry experience.
    • Observe pastors and how they handle ministry needs that arise.
    • Serve alongside pastors as they lead worship, teach classes, mentor volunteers and respond to crises.
    • Have numerous opportunities to preach in churches across the Olivet region as a preaching ambassador [link]. 
    • And so much more!
    Putting knowledge to work

    • Community ministry experience and a full summer internship are part of the degree requirements.
    • In your final year, you are assigned to a church for ministry with a staff or neighboring pastor as your mentor. You also take classes on campus and complete a final project.
    • Missions in Action (M.I.A.) sponsors student mission trips to serve people living on the continents of Asia, Africa, South America as well as in the U.S.


    Do these characteristics describe you? 

    • Good listener
    • Actively reach out to those who are going through a difficult time
    • Knowledgeable about and interested in the Bible
    • Easily explains complex concepts to groups of people
    • Enjoys visiting and talking with others
    • Enthusiastically embraces leadership roles
    • Strong speaking and writing skills
    • Dependable

    Then consider a career as a Christian pastor.

    Possible careers include: senior pastor, preaching pastor, chaplain, administrative/executive pastor, associate pastor, church planter, college/young adult pastor, discipleship pastor, outreach pastor, worship minister, assistant pastor, discipleship pastor, interim pastor, adult ministries pastor, family pastor, lead pastor, evangelist, church administrator, campus pastor, director of religious activities, family life minister, singles pastor, funeral director

    Pastoral Ministry within the School of Theology and Christian Ministry.