Diploma in Ministry

An award for students with previous theological study who are now preparing for Christian ministry.

The Diploma in Ministry is a one-year program that prepares students with an academic background in theology for ministry and pastoral leadership. Through classroom learning, field education, theological reflection, and direct mentorship, students put theory into practice and grow as faithful leaders.

  • Classroom learning: Take classes on subjects such as pastoral care, preaching, and mission.
  • Field education: Put theory into practice in a part-time ministry placement. 
  • Direct mentorship: Learn the ropes of ministry from an experienced mentor. 
  • Theological reflection: Learn to be cognizant of where God is present in your life and work through individual and small group reflections.

More Information About the Diploma in Ministry

The Diploma in Ministry is a one-year program of intensive formation in ministry and pastoral leadership for students with prior theological education from a recognized university, who are preparing for ministry in an Anglican, United Church, or other denomination.  

Students in the Diploma in Ministry are enrolled in the college’s In Ministry Year, an innovative program of contextual theological education. Students are placed full-time in a parish or other ministerial setting and work closely with a designated supervisor and learning support committee. They attend that church every Sunday, leading worship, preaching, and generally becoming part of the life of the community. Small group work and courses on subjects like pastoral care, preaching, mission, leadership, and denominational studies deepen their understanding of the theory and practice of ministry and help them reflect on their field experiences. All courses are offered in a hybrid-online format meaning that the Diploma in Ministry can be completed in a low-residency format. 

Structure and Courses

Christian Mission (MST 561; 3 credits): Explores various theologies and practices of mission, and the specific cultural challenges of evangelization in our North American context. 

Principles of Preaching (MST 531; 3 credits): This courses focuses on the fundamentals of sermon preparation, exegesis for preaching, developing a message, and sermon structure. This course also includes a preaching tutorial where students present sermons for feedback and reflection. 

Pastoral Care (MST 511; 1.5 credits): Introduction to the basic skills of pastoral care, and exploration of the particular gifts and challenges the student brings to this ministry. 

Education and Formation (MST 541; 3 credits): Examines educational theory, theology and practice, and develops skills and knowledge for ministerial leadership in faith formation and education. 

Congregational Leadership (MST 562; 1.5 credits): Provides students with lenses to study the congregation, and explores the various dynamics of leadership, particularly in the context of ordained ministry. 

Students preparing for ministry in a denomination other than the Anglican or United Church may meet the denominational studies requirement in a different fashion. 

Anglican History and Theology: An overview of the Anglican tradition, with a particular focus on contemporary expressions of Anglicanism around the world. 

Anglican Liturgy and Worship: The theology and development of Anglican liturgy. 


United Church History and Theology  
A survey of the rich history of the United Church of Canada and of the various kinds of theologies generated throughout that history and within the United Church today.  

United Church Polity  
Using a case-study approach, discover how the United Church makes its decisions. Explore the caring and practical dimensions of making decisions and working within church structures. Learn the information that church leaders need to be effective in their role in the church.  

United Church Worship  
Explore the unique character, history, and ethos of liturgical expression in the United Church of Canada. Integrate theory and theology and develop skills for worship leadership in congregational and pastoral settings.  

Supervised Field Placement (MST 500; equivalent to 12 credits): This theological field education framework employs disciplined theological reflection in various contexts to develop skills and capacities for ministry. 

The In-Ministry Year includes an intensive intercultural encounter. The encounter provides an opportunity to connect with Christians in other cultures and to be exposed to cultural, economic, socio-political, and environmental issues faced by the church in a different context. Past encounters have included trips to Cuba, Mexico, and Indigenous communities in Canada such as Waswanapi in Northern Quebec.   

  • Non-credit Liturgical Practice Seminar (Anglican students only)
  • Integrative Paper
  • Annual College Retreat
  • Worship and Community Life 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I complete this program on a part-time basis?

Yes, the program can be completed on a part-time basis. 

Can I do this program remotely?

This program can be complete in a low-residency format, although some in-person participation is required. Students are required to be at the college in person three weeks per semester but can otherwise attend classes online and do their field placements outside of Montreal.

Is there financial aid available for the Diploma in Ministry?

Yes! Read our financial aid page for all the details. 

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