Doctor of Ministry in Ministry Development

VTS is happy to announce that our electronic application for the D.Min. program is now available.  Click here for the application.
Our world needs wise Christian leaders who can use a variety of perspectives and tools to read and understand challenging situations, think on their feet, point to the Holy, and open paths of transformation in peoples lives.
Since 1975 we have been helping religious leaders do just that.
Pastoral leaders from many denominations come to our Ministry Development program
  • people who serve in churches, hospitals, the military, mission fields, and public sectors
  • people with 3 – 30 years of experience in religious leadership
  • people with proven skills and leadership, who want to wrestle with new challenges
The heart of our work is fostering deep practical wisdom and courage, as we bring our contexts of ministry into conversation with the finest insights from scripture, theology, and various human sciences and professions. Your context of ministry becomes your laboratory of focused learning, testing, and reflection.
  • Read and interpret the “living text” that is your congregation, institution, mission field, or other context of ministry, along with its surrounding social context.
  • Focus on questions of God's ultimate purposes and desires for individuals, faith communities, and societies.
  • Learn best practices pulled from a range of professions including religious mission and ministry, education, business and labor, government and the military.
  • Work with peers on your real-life situations, to gain new insights and develop new habits in your leadership and discipleship.
  • Examine your own actions and assumptions in your ministry and leadership, through theological, behavioral, and organizational lenses.
  • Know and claim afresh what you are trying to achieve in Christ's name, why you are trying to achieve it, and how you can pursue it through transformational ministry, leadership, and mission.
  • Improve your capacity to guide, shape, and energize congregations and communities of faith.
  • Work side-by-side with leaders in your faith community to stimulate change and open doors for transformation.
In order to prepare for the program, accepted students are expected to read the following books before the first residency:
  • The Practice of Adaptive Leadership, by Ronald Heifetz (and also The Work of Leadership, available as an online book)
  • A Failure of Nerve, by Edwin Friedman
  • Doing Local Theology, by Clemens Sedmak
  • Practical Theology:  An Introduction, by Richard Osmer

Course Offerings
Requirements to apply

Preparatory readings and assignments

9 total weeks of on-campus residencies at VTS

Daily worship and bible reflection

Study of place of ministry

Reading at home

Self-selected training

Case studies

Community of discourse

Project thesis
Contact Us
Doctor of Ministry Program
Virginia Theological Seminary
3737 Seminary Road
Alexandria, VA  22304
Phone: 703-370-6600