Today, I’m glad to share that Wheaton College has partnered with Christ Fellowship Church in Miami, Florida, to create a unique learning opportunity for Christian leaders and pastors to deepen their skills in preaching and inspire their congregations as they lead from the pulpit.
This is not just for people in Miami, but for all over. It just happens to be in Miami… in January… so there’s that.
The Christ Fellowship Miami cohort is a group of like-minded Christian leaders who will undertake the M.A. in Ministry Leadership program together. This program allows pastors to grow in their biblical knowledge and leadership skills as they continue to lead from the pulpit. It’s designed to help any church leader translate theology into compelling expository sermons.
The cohort model offers a unique opportunity for pastors to support and learn from one another. Most cohorts include 15-25 students, and they often become a tight-knit community over the course of the program.
Rick Blackwood will teach in the program, having written on expository preaching and serving as the lead pastor of Christ Fellowship Miami, a multisite church of almost 10,000 weekly attendees in multiple campuses across Miami. He is the author of The Power of Multisensory Preaching and Teaching: Increase Attention, Comprehension, and Retention.
“We can’t be more excited about a partnership with such a well-regarded institution as the Wheaton College Graduate School,” said Blackwood. “This will be a blessing to leaders from all over, but even more so because of the engagement in our Miami context.”
Although M.A. students share the same hunger for growing in biblical knowledge, they also bring a variety of viewpoints. Pastors represent different backgrounds and denominations across the evangelical spectrum. There is a great benefit to the collaboration and learning that can further the impact pastors have as they lead their churches each week. Now, there are classes in Miami, Wheaton (Chicagoland), and online that come together in this new cohort.
The M.A. in Ministry Leadership focuses on three key areas: mission, Bible/theology, and leadership. World-renowned faculty train Christian leaders for challenges they face in a constantly changing culture.
The majority of coursework is completed online, so pastors can continue their ministry where they live and preach. Over the course of the program, the cohort will gather twice each year to learn and collaborate in person. The program meets each year for one week at Wheaton College in the summertime and one week in Miami in January.
In a full cohort, students who are approved in the Christ Fellowship Miami cohort receive a 25 percent discount scholarship towards tuition. The cohort is open to all church leaders, whether they are certified ministers or lead in an unofficial capacity at their church.
For more information on this new opportunity, look at Wheaton’s partnership page. You can also read my one-on-one interviews with Christine Caine, James Meeks, and Matt Chandler on why they’re studying in the School of Mission, Ministry, and Leadership at Wheaton College.
Ed Stetzer holds the Billy Graham Distinguished Chair of Church, Mission, and Evangelism at Wheaton College, serves as Dean of the School of Mission, Ministry, and Leadership at Wheaton College, is executive director of the Billy Graham Center, and publishes church leadership resources through Mission Group.