Home » Career Resources » How To Become » How to Become a Minister?

How to Become a Minister?

how to become a minister

If you are looking for a career that is both fulfilling and challenging, becoming a minister may be the perfect choice.

Ministers play an important role in our society, working in a variety of settings to help people connect with their faith. That’s why I decided to provide all the information you need to decide whether or not becoming a minister is the right option.

I will start by discussing what ministers do, followed by a look at salaries and job growth in this field. I will go through how to become a minister, as well as some of the courses available that can help prepare you for this career path.

Finally, I will explore some of the pros and cons of becoming a minister.

how to become a minister

What Is A Minister?

Ministers are religious leaders who provide guidance and support to people within their faith community. They are authorized to perform religious ceremonies such as weddings, funerals, and baptisms. In addition to their role within the church, ministers also provide counseling and support services to individuals and families experiencing difficulties in their lives.

Where does a minister work?

Ministers typically work in churches or other places of worship but may also be employed by hospitals, colleges, or prisons.

What religion are ministers from?

Ministers can be from any religion, including Christianity, Judaism, Islam, and Buddhism.

The Roles And Duties Of A Minister

Ministers typically perform the following tasks:

  • Providing spiritual guidance and support to individuals and families.
  • Performing religious ceremonies such as weddings, funerals, and baptisms.
  • Leading religious services.
  • Preaching sermons.
  • Teaching religious education classes.
  • Providing counseling services.
  • Visiting sick or homebound parishioners.
  • Fundraising.
  • Administering the business affairs of the church.

Salaries and Job Growth

The median annual salary for ministers was $50,790 per year in May 2019. Job growth in this field is projected to be about the average for all occupations from 2019 to 2029.

How To Become A Minister?

If you are interested in becoming a minister, there are a few steps you will need to take.

Bachelor’s Degree

Most employers require ministers to have a bachelor’s degree. While there is no specific degree required, most ministers complete a bachelor’s degree in theology, religious studies, or divinity. Courses you will take as part of your degree program may include the following:

  • Bible Study
  • Church History
  • Old and New Testament
  • Theology
  • Religious Ethics
  • World Religions

Master’s Degree

Some ministers also complete a master’s degree, which can take an additional two to four years. They may choose to specialize their studies in a particular area, such as counseling or chaplaincy.

how to become the minister guide

Doctor of Ministry

Ministers who wish to pursue an advanced career may choose to earn a Doctor of Ministry degree. This is a terminal degree that usually takes three to five years to complete. Courses you will take as part of your degree program may include the following:

  • Church Growth
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Ministry in a global context
  • Pastoral Care and Counseling
  • Spiritual Formation


Once you have completed your degree, you will need to be ordained by your chosen faith to begin working as a minister. Ordination requirements vary by religion but typically involve completing a period of study and passing an exam.


Some ministers choose to pursue certification through organizations such as the National Association of Evangelicals or the American Association of Christian Counselors. While certification is not required, it can help you demonstrate your proficiency in ministerial work to potential employers.


In some states, ministers must obtain a license to perform religious ceremonies such as weddings. To be eligible for a license, you will need to complete a training program and pass an exam.

Where to Find Courses

You can find courses at your local community college or online that can help you prepare for a career as a minister. Courses typically cover topics such as Bible study, religious ethics, and world religions.

Components Of A Successful Career As A Minister

A successful career as a minister requires the following skills and abilities:

  • Compassion – Ministers must be compassionate to provide comfort and support to those who are grieving or struggling.
  • Communication – They must be able to effectively communicate with their congregation. This includes speaking clearly, writing well, and listening attentively.
  • Interpersonal – Ministers must be able to build relationships with their congregation and provide pastoral care.
  • Leadership – They must be able to inspire and motivate others.
  • Organizational – Ministers must be able to effectively manage the business affairs of the church, including budgeting, fundraising, and event planning.

Related Career Resources

If you are interested in a career as a minister, you may find the following resources helpful:

A Day in the Life of a Minister

A typical day in the life of a minister will begin around sunrise with a time of personal reflection and prayer. After breakfast, the minister will likely spend some time meeting with church staff or members of the congregation.

Around midday, the minister will preach the sermon for that day. After the service, the minister will spend time visiting with church members, providing counseling, or working on administrative tasks. The minister will then have dinner and spend the evening in personal reflection or prayer. Ministers typically work long hours, including weekends and holidays.

how to become minister guide

Becoming A Minister

The Pros

Ministers typically have a great deal of flexibility in their schedules and have the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of others. In addition, ministers typically earn a good salary and receive benefits such as health insurance and retirement. As well as practicing their beliefs and providing guidance to others, ministers also have the opportunity to lead and inspire a congregation.

The Cons

Ministers often work long hours and are possibly on call 24 hours a day. Furthermore, they may face criticism from members of their congregation or the community.

Ministers may also experience burnout from the demands of their job. Thus, becoming a minister is not a decision to be made lightly. It is important to be sure that you have a calling to this profession and that you are prepared to handle the challenges that come with it.

Creating The Perfect CV!

An immaculate CV is sure to land you that job interview, so check out my CV vs Resume, my Best Opening Statement Examples For Resumes, or perhaps Does A Resume Need An Objective, my Best Resume Format Guide, and even How Long Should A Resume Be, or How Many Years You Should Go Back On A Resume, and finally How To Show A Promotion On Your Resume.

However, if you’re still struggling, then guides such as Resume: Writing 2023 The Ultimate Guide to Writing a Resume that Lands YOU the Job!, or how to Modernize Your Resume: Get Noticed…Get Hired, and How to Write the Perfect Resume: Stand Out, Land Interviews, and Get the Job You Want can be very useful.

I also highly recommend The Resume Writing Guide: A Step-by-Step Workbook for Writing a Winning Resume, as well as Your Guide To A Stand Out Modern Resume: Make Your Resume The One That Stops the 6-Second Scroll, and The Resume Handbook: How to Write Outstanding Resumes and Cover Letters for Every Situation all available online in 2023.

Final Thoughts

If you are looking for a challenging and fulfilling career where your hard work can make an impact on others, then becoming a minister may be right up your alley.

Ministers play important roles in churches all over the world; they lead members through difficult times with compassion while also managing business affairs effectively. So everyone has access to what is needed when it matters most!

While this position often comes with long hours of service (both public-facing like services or events as well private), many benefits come alongside these challenges. If you’re interested, then take some time before deciding whether being called into ministry is truly something worth striving towards, because each person must decide based on their own needs.

All the very best in your new career as a Minister!

5/5 - (1 vote)

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top