A high school education is typically needed for acceptance into an undergraduate Christian ministries program. Minimum grade-point-averages are sometimes necessary for admittance, and some schools require students to submit essays and reference letters. Students in bachelor's degree programs may be able to have a concentration or minor focusing on a specific aspect of Christian studies. Online or distance learning formats are also available.
Bachelor's Degree in Christian Ministries
In addition to core courses in general Christian studies, students may take classes regarding a specific concentration, such as children and family, urban ministry, pastoral ministry, or sports ministry. Many programs require students to participate in practical work or internships, where they work under the guidance of an experienced religious leader. Christian ministry students may take classes such as:
- Old and New Testament
- Church history and world religions
- Evangelism and ministry teaching methods
- Christian leadership and church administration
Popular Career Choices
A bachelor's degree in Christian ministries provides students with diverse opportunities to become religious workers. Graduates work for churches, religious organizations, schools, medical facilities, social service agencies, and community organizations. Some potential careers include:
- Youth pastor
- Children's ministries worker
- Church administrator
After earning a bachelor's degree in Christian Ministries, some students may go on to earn a graduate degree or prepare for the seminary. Although Christian denominations differ in their requirements, a Master of Divinity degree program typically prepares students to become pastors, while a Master of Theology degree program provides more advanced study in concentrated fields such as missions, pastoral care, and Bible study.
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
In 2015, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported annual median wages of $44,250 for clergy members and $38,780 for religious activities and education directors. The outlook for these two occupations was very similar, with 6% growth expected for members of the clergy and a 4% increase predicted for directors from 2014-2024.
Individuals interested in furthering their Christian education, become religious educators or who would like to prepare for the seminary, may choose to enroll in a bachelor's degree program in Christian ministries.