Program Details

Master of Arts in Christian Ministry

Offered By: College of Theology

Earn Your Master of Arts in Christian Ministry Degree Online

Current and future lay ministers and assistant pastors are invited to apply for admission to Grand Canyon Theological Seminary. The Master of Arts in Christian Ministry degree program is well-suited to individuals who wish to provide pastoral guidance and care to members of their church community.

This program provides a comprehensive survey of the Old and New Testament foundations, and the development of Christian doctrine. It examines pastoral care, biblical interpretation and ministerial ethics. You will develop your spiritual, intellectual and professional knowledge, and prepare to serve as a faithful gospel minister within your community. Students are inspired to nurture their passion for the gospel of Jesus Christ and Christ-like ministerial service.

Complete your online ministry degree from anywhere. Grand Canyon University’s flexible learning path empowers students to pursue the advanced study of God’s word while continuing to meet their current obligations. All online courses are taught by fully qualified instructors who are experts in their respective fields. The Master’s in Christian Ministry requires a total of 38 credits for completion. Most online classes are eight weeks in length.

Learn the Art of Christian Ministry

Rigorous coursework and hands-on field ministry experiences come together in this comprehensive Christian ministry MA degree program. Some of the core program courses include the following:

  • Leading and Organizing Ministries in the Church
  • Communicating in a 21st Century Ministry Context
  • Pastoral Care in a Ministry Context
  • Old Testament Foundations
  • New Testament Foundations
  • Ministerial Ethics

Through coursework and thoughtful discussions, students will develop the profound theological knowledge and strength of character necessary to lead multigenerational congregations. As a modern university, GCU seeks to graduate students who understand 21st century challenges, and who can apply ethical principles and the rightful interpretation of Scripture to guide others in overcoming these challenges. Some of the core competencies of this online ministry degree program include:

  • Effective communication within various ministerial contexts, including small groups, Bible study and discipleship programs within contemporary settings
  • Nurturing spiritual formation with biblical wisdom through biblical counseling and pastoral care
  • A keen understanding of the cardinal doctrines of the Christian faith, including revelation, God, humanity, Christ and salvation
  • The biblical and theological foundations of Christian ethics, including the responsibilities of gospel ministry

The curriculum includes multiple supervised ministry field experiences embedded throughout the program. Students have the opportunity to demonstrate their grasp of the program’s concepts, theories and research by applying these principles to real-world contexts. There is an emphasis on practical training for ministry leaders as they work to edify the Christian community, and to lead with grace and compassion.

What Can You Do with a Master’s in Christian Ministry?

The MA in Christian Ministry opens the door to various supporting roles within a ministerial context. Graduates will possess a deep understanding of discipleship, evangelism and prayer, which empowers them to pursue a lifetime of service to others in the Christian community. Some possible roles that may be related to this degree include the following:

  • Pastor
  • Associate pastor
  • Administrative pastor
  • Bible study leader
  • Deacon
  • Lay elder

With a thorough grounding in the Christian doctrines and well-developed communication skills, graduates are prepared to lead and shepherd God’s people.

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Total Program Credits: 38
Online: 8 weeks [More Info]
Up to 12 credits or 1/3 of the total program requirements in transfer (whichever is less)

Online: $530 per credit [More Info]

Course List

The programs offered at Grand Canyon University may vary by content and course length. You are currently viewing the program version available in Arizona. For information about specific course content, credit length and VA approval in your state, please contact a counselor at 1-855-GCU-LOPE or click here to request more information.
38 credits
Total Degree Requirements:
38 credits

Program Core Courses

Course Description

This course is designed to prepare students for the graduate learning experience at Grand Canyon University. Students have opportunities to develop and strengthen the skills necessary to succeed as graduate students in ministry and theology. Emphasis is placed on utilizing the tools for graduate success.

Course Description

This course examines the biblical and theological foundations of Christian ethics along with an analysis of the roles and responsibilities of gospel ministry. Significant attention is given to self-care, personal morality, and character formation as well as ethical concerns unique to ministers as they lead, equip, shepherd, and intercede for God’s people.

Course Description

This course is a study of the basic principles of evangelical biblical interpretation, exegesis, and application, especially in the context of ministry, including an introduction to the use of biblical language tools.

Course Description

This course analyzes the practical dimensions of systematic theology and assists students in making critical connections between biblical teaching and ministry within specific contexts. Emphasis is placed on faithful biblically rooted ministry, including a focus on prayer, evangelism, discipleship, and church leadership. This course requires supervised ministry hours. Practicum/field experience hours: 45.

Course Description

This course surveys the text and historical background of the Old Testament with an introduction to hermeneutics and the proper interpretation of the books of the Old Testament.

Course Description

This course surveys the text and historical background of the New Testament with an introduction to hermeneutics and the proper interpretation of the books of the New Testament.

Course Description

This course surveys cardinal doctrines of the Christian faith, including revelation, God, humanity, Christ, and salvation. Emphasis is placed on the development of sound theology grounded in biblical understandings and practical wisdom for ministry. Some attention is given to the historical development of doctrine.

Course Description

This course equips students to provide effective ministry leadership in the areas of pastoral care and counseling in the local church. Emphasis is placed on caring for individuals, families, and small groups by nurturing spiritual formation with biblical wisdom. In addition, this course seeks to equip ministry leaders with skills and tools for biblical counseling. This course requires supervised ministry hours. Practicum/field experience hours: 45.

Course Description

This course prepares students to address various aspects of communication in a local church ministry setting. Emphasis is placed on the various opportunities and challenges to communicate the gospel in small groups, Bible study, and discipleship programs. In addition, the course addresses the need to develop communication skills for a contemporary ministry context. This course requires supervised ministry hours. Practicum/field experience hours: 45.

Course Description

This course furnishes practical training for ministry leaders. Emphasis is placed on both the leader’s personal life and the organizational dynamics of the local church. In addition, this course aims to equip church leaders to manage and lead ministries in a multicultural and multigenerational context. This course requires supervised ministry hours. Practicum/field experience hours: 45.

Program Locations


Pursue a next-generation education with an online degree from Grand Canyon University. Earn your degree with convenience and flexibility with online courses that let you study anytime, anywhere. GCU offers the most experienced leadership in delivering online degree programs. Full-time faculty members and fully trained adjunct instructors, equipped with strong academic backgrounds and practical experience in their fields, support you every step of the way. Designed with the career-oriented professional in mind, our online classes provide an intimate environment that stimulates engaging and challenging discussions. Choose from programs across our distinct colleges, in high-demand employment areas. Classes begin frequently.


Grand Canyon University’s evening programs cater to the demands of working professionals who prefer an in-person learning environment. Our night classes meet just once per week and offer the interaction and discussion of a typical college classroom. Night classes are designed for a specific number of students, providing a warm and nurturing environment that supports an engaging experience. In an evening cohort, you will progress through your degree program with the same career-minded classmates, providing an opportunity to network and forge relationships that go beyond the classroom. Classes begin frequently at various locations, including our main campus.

* Please note that this list may contain programs that are not presently offered as program availability may vary depending on class size, enrollment and other contributing factors. If you are interested in a program listed herein please first contact your University Counselor for the most current information regarding availability of the program.

Program Domains

* The Department of Education defines how an institution must calculate a program's On-Time Completion rate for federal disclosure purposes. The On-Time Completion rate is based on a program's published required number of months to complete all degree requirements as provided in the institution's catalog. Completion statistics are updated every January and are based on the cohort of students who started the program in the same year and then graduated within the published program length .

Online and Evening program disclosures (1.667 years)

* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Program subject to change.