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Become a Local Pastor

If you believe God is calling you to the ministry of a local pastor, you should first spend time in prayer and discernment, listening for God’s call in your life. It’s important to speak with you pastor about your call, and as you decide if this is the right path for you, you should read “The Christian as Minister: An Exploration into the Meaning of God’s Call.”

Once you have chosen to pursue ministry as a local pastor, you’ll need to apply to become a certified candidate and begin the Basic Five-Year Course of Study program.

Students who are enrolled in pretheological studies in a college, university or school of theology listed by the University Senate may be appointed as part-time or full-time local pastors. Students interested in this option should contact their annual conference to find out more about the steps they need to take to serve as a local pastor while completing their studies.

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Duke University

Seeking ordination? GBHEM can connect you with one of the 13 United Methodist seminaries or other United Methodist-approved theological schools.

Students studying

Interested in training to become a local pastor? Learn more about licensing and the Course of Study process.

UMC Cyber Campus

The UMC Cyber Campus is a multilingual learning platform for theological and higher education that aims to enhance global access to affordable, high-quality digital educational resources.

Effective Ministry 360

Need assistance setting and reaching ministry goals for your congregation? Want some guidance with your own continuing formation? Effective Ministry 360 can help.

Message at podium

Find out how the Young Clergy Initiative (YCI) works to grow the next generation of clergy in The United Methodist Church.