Alphacrucis College

Details for Introduction to Ministry

This paper is an introduction to the practice of ministry. It is also an opportunity to overview the biblical and theological foundations of ministry. Common aspects of ministry will be considered. 

Quick Info

  • Currently offered by Alphacrucis: Yes
  • Paper code: MIN101
  • Credit points: 15
  • Total workload hours per week: 10
  • Number of timetabled hours per week: 4 *

* Note: Papers with reduced contact hours (such as those taught in Intensive format) will have an increased assessment component.

The paper Introduction to Ministry is part of the subject area Ministry and is offered as a part of the following Awards: Bachelor of Contemporary Ministry (New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA)).

Paper Content

Curriculum Objective

This paper is an introduction to the practice of ministry. It is also an opportunity to overview the biblical and theological foundations of ministry. Common aspects of ministry will be considered.


Students should be able to:

  1. Describe the historical and cultural issues that have contributed to the development of pastoral ministry
  2. Summarise the biblical, theological, social scientific and traditional foundations which provide the foundation to pastoral ministry practice
  3. Develop and describe a theological framework for addressing contemporary personal and community pastoral issues
  4. Develop and apply practical ways of expressing pastoral care as a result of theological reflection
  5. Identify and examine the need for the pastoral ministry gifts evident in the church today 

Subject Content

  1. The nature and qualifications of the pastor
  2. The use of ritual, authority, intellect and psychology in pastoral care
  3. Pastoral ministry, biculturalism, and engagement with Maori concepts of wellness
  4. The role of a pastor as counsellor
  5. The primary tasks of pastoral ministry
  6. Responsibilities of a pastor in celebrations and ordinances
  7. Self care for pastors and helpers
  8. The function and value of ordination and its theological implications

This course may be offered in the following formats

Lectures, small group discussion, class presentations and web based interaction

Please consult your course prospectus or enquire about how and when this course will be offered next at Alphacrucis College.

Assessment Methods

Devotional Reflective Essay (30%, 1250 words); Forum Postings(20%, 2000 words); Major Essay (50%, 2000 words)

Prescribed Text

Tidball, Derek. Skilful Shepherds – Explorations in Pastoral Theology. Nottingham, England: Apollos, 1997 .

Representative References

Anderson, R.S. The Shape of Practical Theology: Empowering Ministry with Theological Praxis. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2001.

Ballard, P. “The Scriptures in Church and Pastoral Practice” Transformations 24:1 (2007):34-42.

Bass, D., and Dykstra, C., eds. For Life Abundant: Practical Theology, Theological Education, and Christian Ministry. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2008.

Cole, A, ed. From Midterms to Ministry: Practical Theologians on Pastoral Beginnings. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2008.

Egan, G. The Skilled Helper: A Model for Systematic Helping and Interpersonal Relating. Pacific Grove, CA : Brooks/Cole Pub. Co., 7th ed. 2002.

Haughey, J.C. (ed.) Revisiting the Idea of Vocation: Theological Explorations. Washington D.C.: Catholic University of America Press, 2004.

Jacobsen, D. “The Role of Clergy in Public Arena Action.” Clergy Journal 83:1 (2007):14-16.

Lynch, P. The Church’s Story, Strathfield, NSW: St Paul’s Publications, 2005.

Patton, John,  Pastoral Care:  An Essential Guide.  Nashville TN:  Abingdon Press, 2005.

Piper, J. Brothers, We Are Not Professionals: A Plea to Pastors for Radical Ministry. Fearn: Mentor, 2003.

Scharen, Christian.  Faith as a Way of Life:  A Vision for Pastoral Leadership.  Grand Rapids:  Wm. B. Eerdmans, 2008.

Wagner, C. Peter. and Woodward, V (eds.). Your Spiritual Gifts Can Help Your Church Grow. Ventura, Calif., Regal Books, 2005.

Woodward, J. and Pattison, S (eds.). The Blackwell Reader in Pastoral & Practical Theology, Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishers Ltd, 2000.



Clergy Journal

Evangelical Review of Theology

Journal of Pastoral Counselling

Journal of Psychology and Theology


Review of Religious Research