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Christian Ministry Studies’ Discipleship Institute

Whether you are looking for an opportunity for training for lay ministry, a place to take your first-step in preparation for Christian ministry as a second career, or advanced adult Christian education to enable you to better serve your church as a lay person (Sunday school teacher, lay speaker, lay leader), an undergraduate certificate in Christian ministry through the Discipleship Institute may be just what you are seeking.

  • Are you seeking theological proficiency in order to serve your church better as a lay person? This certificate is appropriate for church lay leadership, staff, or anyone seeking to build proficiency for service in the church or para-church.
  • Are you considering seminary but you don’t have a background in theology or religion? Or has it been a few years since you were in college and you need a place to learn study habits that fit your present life situation before going to seminary? This certification could serve as your avenue for gaining proficiency in technical theological terminology, basic theological concepts, research skills, and sharpening your critical thinking skills to prepare for seminary or other denominational specific training.
  • Do you wish that you knew how to study the Bible better, knew a little more Church history, or had a better grasp on basic Christian beliefs? This certification will allow you to develop this knowledge base and help you live out your faith from this knowledge in conjunction with deeper reflection upon your own faith journey.

Because the Christian Ministry Studies Department welcomes students from all Christian traditions and denominations, this certificate is intentionally not denominational specific. This ecumenical approach provides the student with the opportunity to become familiar with other Christian traditions before entering a denominational seminary.

Presently, the department of Christian Ministry Studies offers five areas of certification to choose from:

  • Theological Certification
  • Youth Ministry Certification
  • Discipleship Training Certification
  • Missions and Social Justice Certification
  • Worship Ministry Certification

Additional certifications are in development.

Most certificate programs require only 15 hours (5 classes) with each course costing $1,236 + textbooks (rates based on the 2012-2013 Academic Year). Students who are taking six or fewer courses through the Discipleship Institute do not need to be enrolled in Lindenwood University in order to receive certificate credits. However, one needs to apply and check the “special student status” on the application form.

Certificate credit may be upgraded later to academic credit at an additional cost if you decide that you would like to pursue an undergraduate degree.

Have questions or ready to get started? Contact Dr. Tim Gibson, Department Chair, at (636) 627-4676 or

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