Pastoral Ministry

Bachelor of Arts (BA)

Learning to shepherd from the Good Shepherd

Study Pastoral Ministry at LBC

There are many ideas about what a pastor should be: some view the pastor as the CEO of a corporation, while others see them as the one who gets paid to do the work of the ministry. At Lancaster Bible College, we believe in training up pastors to become shepherd leaders.

LBC’s pastoral ministry major is grounded in the authority of Scripture and places a strong emphasis developing church leaders to become faithful pastors that lead fruitful churches. From a biblical foundation, students learn about the nature of ministry, discipleship and leadership within the context of the local church.

Through our robust curriculum that integrates Bible classes, general education courses, classes focused on the science and art of expository preaching and internship and practicum opportunities that give students a chance to engage in local church leadership and development, our students graduate prepared to enter into ministry.

Students who study pastoral ministry at LBC also learn about the importance pastoral counseling and care within the context of the church, all grounded in the example of Jesus and relying on empowerment of the Holy Spirit. Through careful training, you will learn how to apply the Scriptures to the problems of life and to extend loving care to your members.

All of our classes are taught with an emphasis on engaging the present culture with knowledge of historic orthodoxy and practice. Students who complete this program will earn a Bachelor of Arts degree in both Pastoral Ministry and biblical studies.

Ready to start your training to become a pastor and influence the work of God in the church, community and the world? Apply to LBC today.

Why Study Pastoral Ministry at LBC?

  • Receive instruction in the timeless Scriptures informed by the developments of the present day, without becoming distracted by momentary fads.
  • Gain practical, hands-on experience through internships, practicums, field-based experience, and mock ordinations.
  • Learn from scholars with extensive ministry experience in a variety of ministry and professional settings.
Your Journey

Program Credits: 128

Locations: Lancaster


Bachelor of Arts with majors in Pastoral Ministry and Biblical Studies

Here are some examples of internships that students have completed in the past:

  • Pastoral Intern at a Local Church


  • Traditional
  • Online & Evening (Accelerated)
  • Available as Minor

“So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up.” – Ephesians 4:11-12

A Closer Look: Pastoral Ministry

Carl Edwards (’10): 2016 Distinguished Alumni Service Award Recipient

Carl Edwards is a proud graduate of LBC’s Church & Ministry Leadership department and currently serves the director of Cross Connection Youth Center in New Holland, Pennsylvania. “Handling the word is very important. I want to do justice to the text,” said Edwards of his ministry and education at LBC. “That was one of the biggest things to me – learning how to read the word, learning how to study it, looking it as literal text and applying it. Next is the relational side of ministry – that’s where disciples are made. LBC modeled that for me by having people who poured themselves into me.” 

Meet the Faculty


Dr. Matthew Lynskey

Director of Pastoral Studies

“All good shepherds are in the one Shepherd; they are one. They feed the sheep, and Christ feeds them.” Augustine, “On Pastors”

Read Bio

Dr. Rick Rhoads

Chair of the Church & Ministry Leadership Department

“Who we are and how we live together is what we teach.” — Dr. Rhoads

Read Bio

Sample Course Outline

PAS 102 – Pastoral Ministry

Grasping God’s analogy of shepherding is the bedrock of this course. Understanding the qualifications and job description of a pastor as shepherd over God’s flock is the starting point in developing a healthy and thorough theology of pastoral ministry.

CML 102 – Foundations of Ministry & Discipleship

This course will serve as an introduction to the ministry of the local church. Emphasis will be placed on the holistic integration of discipleship and spiritual formation principles. Students will evaluate models of ministry and develop a comprehensive discipleship plan.

CML 210 – Fundamentals of Leadership

Building on a foundation of personal character development, this course will overview theological components essential for effective leadership. Student will learn strategies for team building, conflict management and leading change.

PAS 201 – Biblical Preaching

Communicating biblical truth is both an art and a science. Consequently, the science of hermeneutics is applied to a text to mine its truth. Delivery of that truth is the art of skillful and creative communication. Students will practice the principles and begin discovering their own unique style of exegetical preaching.

PAS 340 – Church Leadership

This is a study of the practical task of the church leader, using the case method and the seminar approach. The leadership tasks to be covered are planning, organizing, staffing, training, delegating, coordinating, controlling, evaluating, decision making, and communicating. Organizational leadership, systems of church government and administration are key components of this course. Case studies are a critical tool used to prepare students for the unique challenges of leading parishioners, staff members and volunteers alike.

PAS 331 – Pastoral Counseling

Pastors have a unique opportunity to shepherd those who seek personal spiritual direction. With spiritual transformation as the ultimate goal, students are equipped with biblical counseling skills to guide and disciple those who seek assistance.

PAS 402 – Pastoral Care

This is a how-to course for the wide array of pastoral functions and privileges. Field trips and practical instruction prepare students for ministry to their flock from birth to death. Baptism, communion, weddings, baby dedications, and funerals are just a few of the topics addressed in this course.

CML 450A – Pastoral Ministry Practicum

This senior year course is an extension of CML 350A Pastoral Internship. Students are expected to serve in key positions of leadership in the church under the careful supervision of a seasoned ministry veteran. Development of a personal philosophy of ministry, doctrinal statement, core values, and resume will serve as a capstone to pursue future ministry options.

Careers and Jobs in Pastoral Ministry

  • Counselor
  • Non-Profit Leadership
  • Parachurch Ministry Leadership
  • Pastor

What’s your next step?