MINISTERIAL LICENSING

We are so excited you have expressed a call to ministry, and we hope you will feel empowered and equipped in this journey. In the following outline, you will find resources, tools, and the necessary next steps for you. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to us, as we would love to help you.

Step 1: TALK TO YOUR PASTOR

If you feel as though you have been called to ministry, your first step is to talk with your pastor at your local church. The pastor and the local church serve as your first partner in ministry.

STEP 2: APPLY FOR A LOCAL MINISTER’s LICENSE

Upon receiving the support from your local pastor, he or she will have you fill out an application for a Local Minister’s License. This license is supported by your local church staff and church board, affirming your call to ministry. Below are the steps for you and your church to follow in obtaining a Local Minister’s License:

The Global Ministry Center will issue a Local Minister’s license to the candidate. This license is to be renewed annually by your local church. Below are the steps for you and your church to follow in renewing a Local Minister’s License:

If you have decided you no longer wish to seek a ministerial calling, please notify your local church’s pastor.

STEP 3: START FULFILLING YOUR EDUCATIONAL REQUIREMENTS FROM THE COURSE OF STUDY

While holding a Local Minister’s License, it is your responsibility to be learn as much as you are able to in your church and from your educational requirements. The Church of the Nazarene requires pastors to finish an outlined Course of Study to ensure quality and consistent education among their ministers. Take a look at the Course of Study outline and consider registering at one of the following schools:

Step 4: Apply for a District Minister’s License

After holding a Local Minister’s License for one year, participating in the Board of Ministry Discovery Weekend, and completing one-fourth of the Course of Study requirements, you are eligible to apply for a District Minister’s License. This next step requires your local church’s support and the approval of the District Advisory and Studies Boards. Below are the steps for you and your church to follow in applying for a first-time District Minister’s License:

Your District Minister’s License is to be renewed annually using this same process. Upon receiving your first district license, you will be expected to make progress in the Course of Study (educational requirement) each year. If you have graduated from the Course of Study, you are expected to follow the guidelines for Lifelong Learning hours.

Step 5: Start accumulating Assigned Ministry EXPERIENCE HOURS

To be eligible for ordination, you must have been an assigned minister on a full-time basis for three consecutive years and, at the time of ordination, you must currently be serving in assigned ministry.

There are multiple assignments (called role codes) and various levels of service time requirements. If you are assigned in a full-time role, you will need just the three calendar years to be eligible for the next step. However, if you are serve in a half-time or quarter-time role, your ministry experience must be the equivalent of three calendar years (At half-time this would be six calendar years and quarter-time would be twelve years).

Step 6: Apply for Ordination

After graduating from the Course of Study and fulfilling the three required years of assignment ministry, you are eligible to submit an application for Ordination. From the time you receive your first District Minister’s License, you have ten years to complete the requirements for Ordination; if any exceptions are made, they will be from the District Advisory and Studies Boards. Ordination is a privilege for each minister that commissions them to live out their ministerial calling. Below are the steps for you to follow in applying for Ordination:

  • Complete an Ordination Application.

  • Attend the Board of Ministry Training Day and interview with your assigned committee.

  • Attend the Ordination Interview Day and interview with the District Board of Ministry.


For further information, please do not hesitate to reach out to the Chicago Central District Ministry Center or use the following resources: