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Certificate of Christian Ministry (Core Courses)

Courses are listed in our recommended order of completion: 

Who is Jesus? This is the central question of good theology and ministry practice.

In this course we look to Jesus as the revelation of the Father and discover the relationship he brings us into through the Spirit. We consider Jesus’ life, death, resurrection and ascension. The course encourages reflective consideration of both the method and message of his teachings contained in the four Gospels. With attention to good principles of Bible study and exegesis, we discover Jesus more deeply and personally as “the way, the truth and the life”, the One who came in human form to not only show us the Father, but to unite us with the Triune God.

Christian Ministry is founded on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. This subject provides students with an introduction to, and examination of, the person, teachings and work of Jesus.

Material is drawn from the four Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John). Students will be expected to display the competencies required to exegete these New Testament books. Students will be expected to exhibit an understanding and application of the teachings of Jesus Christ contained therein, based on an understanding of the meaning of Christ’s life, death, and resurrection – in answer to the central question, “Who is Jesus?”. This class will enable students to address the following elements of exegetical competency:

  • Analyze and describe selected passages of the Gospels
  • Explain the meaning of these passages
  • Postulate contemporary applications of these passages

The object of this class is to help students encounter the Incarnate Word through the Written Word. Knowing God, not just knowing about God, is the object of study. Through the Spirit of the risen Christ, humans are invited into a dynamic, living relationship with their Savior.

This course has 11 classes with three assessments comprising of two short answer papers and an exegesis. All texts and supporting materials are supplied.

This class equips students in the process of spiritual formation as a life-long transforming and learning experience that emerges from our communion with Christ and forms the basis of Christian ministry. Spiritual formation involves the joyful sharing and participation in the life and love of the Father, Son and Spirit. All of our lives, individually and in communion together, are “in Christ”.

For the purposes of this class, spiritual formation will include the following:

  • An exploration of the biblical basis of spiritual formation
  • Developing working definitions and descriptions of spiritual formation
  • Theological perspectives
  • Beginning a conversation with the voices of the Christian past and present
  • Developing an understanding of the role of the spiritual disciplines and their implications
  • Personal and congregational (community) devotions
  • Personal growth and development
  • Practical ministry (service)

This course has 13 classes and four assessments which comprise of a short answer paper, self-awareness statement, spiritual journal, and book report. Richard Foster’s Celebration of Discipline (Hodder & Stoughton, any edition after 1989) is the required text for this course.

This class is designed to provide an overview of the major doctrines of Grace Communion International. Students will be introduced to the GCI Statement of Beliefs and spend time with the scriptural passages and the theological background behind key statements contained within it.

On completion of this class students should be able demonstrate a basic understanding of the core beliefs and teachings of Grace Communion International as evidenced by written responses to assigned exercises.

This course has 13 classes and four short answer assessments. All texts and supporting materials are supplied.

What is Christian leadership? Who is a leader? This course enables students to answer these questions through the lens of Jesus Christ.

The Christian Leadership course at ACCM is designed to help those involved in various areas of Christian leadership and ministry to be better equipped to take on the wide variety of challenges and opportunities leadership provides. Students will be led through the foundational aspects and implications of leadership, and encouraged to explore and reflect on the many dimensions Christian leadership encompasses and challenged to find ways of applying what they learn to their own areas of service to God and his people.

 Key competencies:

  • Develop and demonstrate an understanding of leadership through the lens of Jesus (A Trinitarian, grace-based approach to leadership)
  • Understand and apply servant leadership principles
  • Develop a working understanding of key contemporary leadership insights, including transformational leadership
  • Develop and encourage leadership for everyone, as each individual uses his or her gifts to serve (Leadership is not gender based); leaders develop others as leaders
  • Understand and apply the need for teams and team leadership (a particular kind of leadership)
  • Develop self-awareness and self-understanding of one’s gifts and strengths and preferred leadership style
  • Developing self-leadership skills, including self-care
  • Appreciate leadership emerging from spiritual formation
  • Knowing and practicing that Christian leadership, like all of life, is – and only is – “in Christ”

This course has 10 classes and five assessments comprising of three short papers, a book report, and a leadership project. All texts and supporting materials (excluding a chosen text for the book report) are supplied.

The Bible: Written Word, Living Word class is intended to examine our approach to the Scripture. What do we bring with us to our Bible studies? What is the Bible really meant to convey? What is the truth God inspired it to reveal? Is it a reference book like a manual or encyclopedia giving us eternal principles for good living? How do we read the Old Testament? How does it have meaning for us today?

We will start by considering basic questions about the nature and role of Scripture, and look at some of the commonly held views of the Bible and how it should be read. We will work on developing important Bible Study skills and sound approaches to interpreting and applying the words of Scripture in the Old and New Testaments in the light of who God has revealed himself to be in Jesus Christ through the inspiration of God the Holy Spirit.

Through this class students are expected to develop an understanding of, and competencies in regard to, the following areas of studying and interpreting the written word of God:

  • Be aware of our own worldview and assumptions that we bring to our reading of Scripture, and think deeply about which of these are helpful, and which take away from a more authentic understanding of what God is saying through his written revelation in Scripture.
  • Learn to appreciate the underlying truth and goal of God’s revealing himself through written words from various times, in various literary styles, involving so many different people with varying levels of understanding of God.
  • Learn to read the Scripture as a whole, as the story of God and his people pointing and leading us to Jesus Christ, the living, eternal word who alone fully and completely reveals who God truly is.
  • Read and show an understanding of how various Biblical theologians view the nature and role of Scripture, and the implications and benefits of viewing Scripture as incarnational rather than inerrant.
  • Understand the written nature of Scripture, its varying contexts and literary genres, and how appreciating and respecting how it is written leads to a more authentic and meaningful understanding.
  • Be able to interpret scriptural passages in their cultural, linguistic and theological time and place and understand the difference between reading the Bible literarily and literalistically.
  • Understand the importance and advantage of exegetical study of Scripture.
  • Understand the basic principles of sound hermeneutics, and learn to use them in seeking to understand and apply the meaning of Scripture for life today.
  • Appreciate the intended impact and depth of meaning of non-literal language (metaphors, types, poetry, apocalyptic writing etc.)
  • Develop a deeper insight into the meaning and message of the early chapters of Genesis, particularly the creation.
  • Become consistent in reading the Old Testament both in its original context, and in the light of Jesus Christ and his fulfilment of the law, prophets and writings.

This course has 8 classes and four assessments comprising of a short paper, book report, and two exegeses. All texts and supporting materials (excluding a chosen text for the book report) are supplied.

Christian leaders are called to a new, Christ-centered way of leading. In this course we are focused on the theological realities and underpinnings of Christian service and pastoral care and various aspects of day to day “incarnational” pastoral care and ministry.

We will start by considering what “incarnational ministry” is all about and its foundation in the life of God; particularly our sharing in the ongoing ministry of Jesus Christ through the leadership and support of the Holy Spirit. We will then look at various aspects of pastoring local congregations, including caring for and nurturing those in need, visiting the sick (including the terminally ill) and helping those dealing with grief and bereavement.

Pastoring includes congregational planning and leadership, so we will look at ways of enhancing community decision-making, including facilitating meetings and small groups. Students will be asked to interview an experienced pastor or carer to see what can be learned from their experiences in leading and caring for others.

Time will be spent considering ways of handling the challenges some troubled members can present to congregational life, including anger, abuse, addictions and other negative behavioral issues. We will look at how we pastor members at different life stages, including children, youth and the elderly. Another section will focus on various aspects of church life, including being a worshipful community, the church calendar, prayer, hospitality and fellowship. The discipling of new members and encouraging all to grow in their unique gifts and role in the church community will be discussed. We will look outwards in a section on mission and outreach and finally to the future as we consider the benefits and importance of caring for ourselves and other leaders in the interests of a healthy and ongoing incarnational ministry in our local congregations.

Through this class students are expected to develop an understanding of, and competencies in regard to, the following areas of pastoral care and ministry:

  • Develop an understanding and appreciation for the deep and vital theological underpinning of incarnational pastoral care and ministry.
  • Read and show an understanding of what leading Trinitarian theologians and teachers have to say about participating in Jesus’ work of pastoral care and incarnational service.
  • Understand the ramifications of Christ as the source and centre of all service, teaching and leadership.
  • Students will learn about “incarnational”, gracious and Spirit led ways of participating in various roles of service within the body of Christ; including serving those at different life stages and with varying needs.
  • Have an understanding of the various life stages and helping people with the varying challenges and opportunities each stage can present.
  • Be aware of the issues involved with ministering to troubled individuals and dealing with cases of abuse, neglect or unethical behavior.
  • An understanding should be developed of the vital part discipleship, mission and outreach play in the life and role of a local church community.
  • Understand and develop skills facilitating congregational meetings and small group activities.
  • Be able to help with the identification and ongoing development of the gifts of all members, including future leaders.
  • Appreciate the need for, and be able to work towards forming a proactive plan for preventing burn out, or being caught up in a self-focused or programmatic approach to Christian ministry. Students will be encouraged to see themselves as privileged and beloved participants along with the rest of the body in the life and work of Jesus Christ.

This course has 8 classes and three assessments comprising of two short papers and a book report. All texts and supporting materials (excluding a chosen text for the book report) are supplied.

Diploma in Christian Ministry (additional 4 courses)

Courses are listed in our recommended order of completion, however Applied Christian Ministry is the capstone course and must be completed last.

This course is designed to help you make significant progress towards achieving the following objectives:

  • Clarify what a sermon is, what the central goals of preaching are, and the processes of putting sermons together.
  • Understand the role and importance that God (Father, Son and Holy Spirit), the text, the preacher, preaching and the audience have in preaching.
  • Understand and practice Christ-centered, grace/gospel based preaching from both Old and New Testament texts.
  • Appreciate the value and priority of preaching expository sermons in preaching God’s word to his people.
  • Be able to use sound exegetical methods to dig into the original context and content and meaning of a passage.
  • Outline the main topic and points of a text, and interpret the meaning for your audience.
  • Build your sermon out of the text by constructing a sermon outline with the goal of keeping the message true to the central point of the text, easy to follow and understand, focusing on the main point rather than trying to cover too much.
  • Grow in understanding of our personal part in preaching, including the foundational roles of spiritual formation, prayer and ethics.
  • Understand the importance of knowing and loving those we speak to.
  • Develop our speaking skills, so we are able to communicate clearly, and in a way that reaches into the hearts and minds and lives of our listeners.
  • Be aware of and utilize many of the helpful resources that are available to help us be better servants of Jesus, his word and his church.

This course has 8 classes and three assessments comprising of an exegesis and two sermons with evaluations. This course has two required texts that can be chosen from the reading list.

This practical course helps students understand the essentials of the communication process, identify potential communication problems, construct productive approaches to communication, and develop strategies to develop effective communication skills. Students can benefit from this course in their congregation, personal and family lives, in their learning, and in their career development.

This subject aims to introduce students to the basics of interpersonal and business communication, equipping them to communicate more effectively and with greater awareness and skill in both personal and business environments. It is designed to help students heighten their awareness of the function and value of communication. The subject aims to equip students with the ability to use the communication skills required in meetings, group discussions, interviews, and presentations.

On completion of this subject students should be able to:

  • Identify key elements and principles of communication
  • Demonstrate understanding of the communication process
  • Describe their own communication strengths and growth areas
  • Demonstrate ability to prepare and present a short oral presentation
  • Describe and practice key listening skills
  • Prepare a clear and informative piece of written communication

This course has 6 classes and three assessments comprising of two short papers and an oral presentation. All texts and supporting materials are supplied.

By exploring the rich biblical view of worship, this course equips students to more fully comprehend and enter into a life of worship! A life that fully participates in the life, worship and mission of Jesus Christ.

By starting with the “who” question—first seeking to understand who God is, and who we are in the light of God’s self-revelation in the scriptures and most fully through the incarnation—we learn that our triune God created us to share in a living relationship with God which would in turn transform our relationships with one another and the entire created order. All of this we experience in Christ! Sharing in the life of the risen Son, we find ourselves included in, and participating with him, in his communion with the Father through the Spirit.

This course is built on such a foundation. It will emphasise and explore this underlying theology of worship—that Jesus is the one True Worshipper, and that we share in his perfect worship offered to the Father on our behalf, both as persons and as congregations.

The scriptural narrative testifies that in Christ, we share in all of the operations of the Trinity. As the Spirit binds us to Christ, we share in his life! And, as we offer our bodies—as our appropriate and intelligent act of worship—we participate in his worship and mission.

As a result, we will explore the ways in which our intertwined life of worship and mission flows out of our inclusion in Christ’s worship and mission. We will focus together primarily on the “who question” – what he is doing, and only in a secondary way address the “how” and “what” – matters of service format, liturgy, prayer, music, conduct of services and so on.

This course has five classes and three short paper assessments. All texts and supporting materials are supplied.

This unit of study seeks to actively coalesce the accumulated learning of previous ACCM courses, the skills you’ve acquired and the learning community networks in which you’ve participated into a fitting finale for your Diploma program. This is your best chance yet to demonstrate the practical way(s) in which you’re integrating your learning into the day-to-day life and culture of your fellowship. At ACCM, we see this as what the Master can expect from sincere disciples participating in the process of His Body “edifying itself in love” (Eph.4:16).

Upon registering for the capstone course, you will be assigned a Project Coordinator (Coach) who will supervise your research and project submission.

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Certificate of Christian Ministry

Diploma of Christian Ministry

(Includes completion of Certificate of Christian Ministry)