What Qualifies Someone to Be a Minister?


Quick Answer

The minimum requirement to qualify as a minister is a bachelor’s degree in a related field, though most employers prefer an aspiring minister to have a master’s degree in divinity and ordination as a minister. Other qualifications to become a minister include any additional licensure or certification the particular denomination and church require or prefer. Previous experience and activity in the religious community also qualifies educated, entry-level candidates to become a minister.

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Full Answer

All Christian ministers must possess knowledge of holy texts and doctrines to qualify as a minister. In order for potential ministers to instruct members of the church, bachelor’s degree programs for ministers focus on the philosophy of religion, the role of the church, ancient culture and Biblical interpretation. Majors which qualify a person to be a minister may include religious studies, religious education and theology.

Most Christian ministers must hold a master’s degree from a divinity school, also known as theological colleges or divinity schools. Students gain hands-on experience and training during divinity school, and study subjects such as systematic theology, liturgy and ethics.

To qualify as a minister, a candidate must complete the ordination process. Ordination grants ministers their religious authority, and each denomination has its own requirements for the ordination process. Some possible requirements for ministers include district-licensing courses, oral and written examinations, interviews with church committees and time spent volunteering with the church.

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