Exploring your call to ministry

If you are considering whether you are called to pastoral ministry, you may be wondering how you can explore this calling. There are a variety of programs available, both degree and non-degree, for people exploring a call to ministry. Take a look at this list of programs compiled by the Leadership Development Resource Team.

High School age
  • Central Christian School, Kidron, Ohio
  • !Explore program (run by Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary [AMBS] in partnership with churches for students in grades 10-12)
College age
  • Ministry Inquiry Program (Goshen College, Bluffton University, EMU)
  • Hesston College
  • Rosedale Bible College
  • Malone University
Adult (non-degree)
  • Hesston College — CALL certificate
  • Rosedale Bible College — Training in Ministry (TiM)
  • Journey — partnership with AMBS, conference, and congregation
  • AMBS Short Courses — online, six weeks per course, certificate
  • Northern Seminary, Illinois — Certificate in Anabaptist Studies
Adult (Masters+)
  • Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary (AMBS)
  • Eastern Mennonite Seminary
  • Ashland Theological Seminary
  • Fuller Theological Seminary
  • Northern Seminary, Illinois

For a printable list of these programs, click here: Leadership Development – Educational & Training Opportunities

Calling leaders from within our congregations

For a variety of reasons, the number of men and women who are graduating from seminaries and pursuing pastoral ministry positions has been decreasing. This has resulted in fewer candidates for pastoral openings throughout the Ohio Conference.

The Leadership Development Resource Team is currently exploring both new and traditional ways of identifying those whom God may be calling into pastoral ministry. We are inviting each of our congregations to try to identify two or three individuals who they believe have the gifts for pastoral ministry. This person might be a high school youth, or an adult of any age. There are programs available, both traditional and non-traditional, for people of all ages to explore and test their call to ministry. Please contact one of the members of the Leadership Development Resource Team (listed below) with the names of the people you have been able to identify.

Leadership Development Resource Team

Rebecca Kauffman, Pastor, Bethel Mennonite Church, rebecca@bethelchurchwl.org

Joel Shenk, Pastor, Toledo Mennonite Church, joelshenk@gmail.com

Danae King, ministry student and member of Orrville Mennonite Church, danaeking@gmail.com

Miriam Zehr, Associate Pastor, Oak Grove, Smithville, ogpastor.miriam@gmail.com

Shawn Hilliard, Pastor, Martins Mennonite Church, shawn.e.hilliard@gmail.com

Tony Doehrmann, Regional Pastor – West, ocrpwest@gmail.com

Dick Barrett, Ohio Conference Minister, ohioconferenceminister@gmail.com