Volume 27 - Number 2 - Winter 2020 - Healing for the Hurting Church

New Doctor of Ministry Program Focused on Diversity, Ministry Questions

This article appears in the Volume 27 - Number 2 - Winter 2020 - Healing for the Hurting Church edition of the Calvin Seminary Forum

Calvin Seminary has announced the launch of a new Doctor of Ministry (DMin) program, with an expected launch date of May 2020. This doctoral degree program will be designed for the current pastor or ministry leader interested in asking big questions and going deeper with a diverse cohort of peers.

As a place that equips leaders for the Church, Calvin Seminary’s DMin program will find a natural fit in the curriculum. That being said, the DMin will be unique in a variety of ways: As the first practical doctoral degree, the DMin is intended for the ministry practitioner, as opposed to the more academically focused PhD program. Danjuma Gibson, professor of pastoral care and co-director of the Doctor of Ministry program, sees the uniqueness as a strength for the students in the program as well as the Calvin Seminary community. “The students will all be daily practitioners who are drawn to our program because the challenges and questions of day-to-day ministry press on them – and they know they can grow and change to meet these challenges. This means that we are all learners and theologians together for a common cause,” says Gibson. “The conversations and learning that this program will produce through applied theological scholarship will only serve to benefit the faculty, students and community at CTS.”

In addition, the DMin program names specific values that will shape the program, focusing intentionally on cohorts of ministry leaders who come from diverse backgrounds and who are asking significant questions. Fellow co-director of the Doctor of Ministry, Geoff VanderMolen, notes this distinction: “Our intention is to curate theological conversations where pastoral leaders from a variety of contexts and backgrounds can be engaged together in the doing of contextually excellent theology that advances local ministry in significant ways.”

Unlike the PhD programs, the new DMin will utilize a hybrid model – meaning students will only be required to travel to campus once a semester, allowing ministry leaders from all over North America, even all over the world*, to join without moving to West Michigan. In addition, the program differentiates from the traditional semester model, creating courses where the busy seasons differ from busy seasons in the ministry calendar. Finally, scholarships are available to help cover course fees for this advanced degree.

Applications for the first cohort are due March 1, 2020, with a May 2020 start date. For more information and to apply, visit

Note: An application has been made which, if accepted, will allow Calvin Seminary to offer student visas for students admitted to the program. While we have no reason to believe this application won’t be accepted, review and action on this application can take many months. At the time of print, this application is still pending.

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