You might be looking at this major because you have a passion for ministry to the next generation. We are excited to let you know that Grace College partners with The National Institute for the Development of Ministries to Youth, affiliated with CE National, a national organization of the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches.
This degree offers both excellent Bible teaching and hands-on training in youth ministry leading to a bachelor's degree. The B.A./B.S. in Youth Ministries prepares students to minister to youth in a local church, para-church, cross-cultural, or camp settings through academic instruction and hands-on ministry experiences. Besides courses in Bible, Theology, Evangelism, and Youth Ministry, the B.A. degree also has a foreign language component. The three components of the major include courses in theology and Bible study methods, spiritual formation and prayer, and practical ministry courses, some of which are off campus in locations where the ministry being studied is practiced.
Examples of courses in this major:
Students will explore foundational issues for developing an approach to evangelism. Questions that will be considered include: What constitutes true conversion? Is becoming a Christian a process or an event? What about lordship salvation? What is the relationship between evangelism and the sovereignty of God? How do trends and needs in society shape a strategy for evangelism? Second, students will examine various methods of evangelism, for example, lifestyle evangelism. Third, students will study the concept and methods of discipleship as an integral part of evangelism.
Students will explore the modern history of youth ministry and will evaluate the four primary approaches in current use in light of biblical principles. Students will seek to understand contemporary adolescent issues and the essential ingredients needed to make an effective youth ministry. Students will develop strategies for integrating youth ministries into the local church. Areas of discussion will include parenting ministries and methods of building a volunteer staff and youth team.
Strategies will be developed for establishing strong ministry teams and for ministering to junior and senior high students, as well as to recent graduates. Students will examine the role in youth ministries of the Christian school, home schooling, and the public school. They will explore and analyze various curriculums and develop strategies for meeting the needs of youth in complex family and societal structures.
The student will learn how to assess relevant issues related to specific cultures and how to target the needs of youth within various socioecomnic groups. This class will develop stategies for meeting the needs of youth in a cross-cutural context and how to church plant using youth as a target group. The students will be taught how to train youth leadership to accomplish church planing and development. This class will be held in a cross-cultural setting offering hands-on training.
Students will seek to identify various methods of communicating biblical and spiritual truth to a changing youth culture. They will be equipped with techniques for establishing effective communication with young people. Various styles of communication, including small group discussions, informal teaching times, and the use of technology and music, will be examined. In addition, students will investigate counseling tools and techniques for working with families and youth in crisis counseling situations. Students will consider how to relate to the changing roles of adolescents as they mature in a diverse society. Legal issues of counseling will be examined, and students will evaluate how to determine the advisability of deferring troubled youth to professional counselors.
The individuals who will challenge you to learn:
B.A. in Economics, Millersburg State College; M.Div., Grace Theological Seminary; M.A. in Biblical Counseling, Grace Theological Seminary; D.Min. in Pastoral Studies, Denver Seminary
Dr. Ken Bickel was originally in banking when he was saved and called to the ministry. He served as a full-time senior pastor for eleven years and part-time instructor at Grace Theological Seminary before coming full-time to Grace in 1990. He has served as a visiting instructor in Homiletics at Philadelphia Biblical University and as a church consultant on numerous occasions. He is a past President of the FGBC National Ministerial Association. He is a charter member of the Evangelical Homiletics Society and regularly presents papers at the annual meetings. He is active in community related activities and serves on the elder board in his local church. His latest research can be seen in Interpreting the Psalms for Preaching and Teaching, edited by Herb Bateman and Brent Sandy (Chalice, 2010).
B.S. in Communication, Ohio University; M.Div., Trinity Evangelical Divinity School; Ph.D. in Biblical Theology (New Testament), Wheaton College
Dr. Matt Harmon brings a passion to equip people to encounter Christ through the Scriptures and lead others to do so as well. His research interests include the use of the Old Testament in the New Testament, Biblical Theology, Pauline studies, and the life/ministry/theology of Jonathan Edwards. He served as full-time staff with Campus Crusade for Christ for eight years, doing evangelism and discipleship with college students. He taught courses at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and Wheaton College, as well in the local church. On a regular basis, Dr. Harmon also teaches for Campus Crusade for Christ, helping to train staff in interpreting and teaching Scripture. In his spare time, Dr. Harmon also teaches training workshops for Bibleworks. He is a member of the Evangelical Theological Society and the Society for Biblical Literature. Dr. Harmon is married to Kate and has two sons.
B.A. in Christian Education, Wheaton College; M.A. in Christian Education, Talbot School of Theology; Ph.D. in Educational Studies (Character Development and Spiritual Formation), Talbot School of Theology
Dr. Hill brings her passion and training in spiritual formation to facilitate the holistic development of students while at Grace. Her research interests include personal and interpersonal development with empirical work conducted in the area of adult attachment styles and relationship with God variables. She taught at Biola University and Talbot School of Theology before coming to Grace in 2006. While she focuses primarily in women's ministries, she has served in a variety of leadership roles cross-culturally, in the local church and in the parachurch context. Dr. Hill has developed a number of Bible study materials, published in the Christian Education Journal and presented research findings at the North American Professors of Christian Education Conference, a society of which she is a member.
B.A. in Social Science, Biola University; M.A. in Education, California State University, Fullerton
TK Kurtaneck is a director at CE National (Church Effectiveness) in Winona Lake, Indiana, where he oversees the ministries of Operation Barnabas and The National Institute for the Development of Ministries to Youth. TK is married to Dana & they have two children.
B.A. in Pastoral Studies, Moody Bible Institute; M.Div., Trinity Evangelical Divinity School; Th.M. in Practical Theology, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School; D.Min. in Preaching, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
Dr. Rock LaGioia has been heavily involved in pastoral work since 1987. A member of the Evangelical Homiletics Society and the Evangelical Theological Society, he has authored numerous magazine articles and written book reviews. Dr. LaGioia has taught a wide variety of college courses such as spiritual formation, preaching, and theology at Moody Bible Institute and Taylor University. He has also taught graduate level homiletics and theology courses at Trinity International University and Huntington University Graduate School. Dr. LaGioia and his wife, Kathy, have been blessed with two sons.
B.A. in Religion, Shelton College; M.Div., Th.M. in Old Testament and Hebrew, Th. D. in Old Testament and Hebrew, Grace Theological Seminary
Dr. Ronald Manahan has taught at Grace since 1977. In addition to his teaching, he has served as a division chair, academic dean, and provost at Grace College before being appointed fifth president of Grace Schools in 1994. He has had extensive experience as a pastor and a Bible conference speaker. He also teaches Biblical Perspectives on the Environment at Au Sable Institute. President Manahan has been a contributing author to two books, as well numerous journal articles.
Diploma in Advanced German, Goethe Institute; B.A. in History, Grace College; M.Div., Grace Theological Seminary; D.Min. in Intercultural Studies, Grace Theological Seminary
Dr. Roger Peugh came to Grace in the fall of 1989 with three years of pastoral experience followed by 20 years of missionary experience as a church planter in Germany. While at Grace, he was involved as an elder in a church plant for 13 years. He is an active Bible conference speaker as well as guest-lecturer in several German Bible schools. In addition to his role as Professor in the School of Ministry Studies, Dr. Peugh serves Grace College as Campus Prayer Coordinator and is serving as the Interim Dean of Chapel. Dr. Peugh, who has authored on the topic of prayer, is married to Nancy and they have four children and eight grandchildren.
B.S. in Urban and Regional Planning, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona; M.Div. in Biblical Languages, Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary; Ph.D. in Theological Studies (Old Testament), Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
Dr. Rata came to Grace Theological Seminary from Beeson Divinity School in Birmingham, Alabama, where he served as Assistant Professor of Divinity. Before that he taught at Trinity International University in Deerfield, Illinois, and Emmanuel Baptist University in Oradea, Romania. He has also pastored churches in California and Alabama, and served as an interim pastor in Michigan and Indiana. He is a member of the Evangelical Theological Society and the Institute for Biblical Research and has presented papers at the national conventions of the Evangelical Theological Society. Dr. Rata is chair of the undergraduate Department of Biblical Studies. He and his wife, Carmen, have two sons.
B.A. in Bible, Appalachian Bible College; Th.B. in Bible and Theology, Appalachian Bible College; M.A. in Religion, Liberty University; M.Div., Th.M. in Theology, D.Min. in Pastoral Theology, Grace Theological Seminary; Ph.D. in Preparation, Capella University
Dr. Mark Soto teaches in the School of Ministry Studies and is the program director for the M.A. in Ministry Program. His background in curriculum design enables him to provide faculty development and training in this area. He works extensively with the institution's hybrid-online programs while also completing a Ph.D. in Instructional Design for Online Learning at Capella University. Prior to coming to Grace College, he had 12 years of experience in the pastoral ministry and was a counselor for a Christian residential childcare facility. He continues to serve as an interim pastor for two churches. He served as a part of the Grace College Student Life staff as the Associate Dean of Men before assuming a full-time faculty position. Dr. Soto and his wife, Carol, have two grown daughters.
B.A. in Communications, Grace College; Th.M. in Bible Exposition, Dallas Theological Seminary; D.Miss., Western Baptist Seminary
Dr. Tom Stallter has 18 years of missionary experience in the Central African Republic and Chad in the areas of church planting and development, leadership training, mission administration, and famine and economic relief. In addition to his teaching in the School of Ministry Studies, Dr. Stallter is the Executive Director of the institution's GTS Center for Korean Studies. Areas of research for Dr. Stallter include, cultural intelligence, business as mission, multicultural worship, ethics in missions, cultural values, cultural identity assessment, culture discovery, and matching missionary candidates to contexts. He is a member of the Evangelical Missiological Society and the National Ministerium of the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches. Dr. Stallter and his wife, Sharon, have three grown children and one granddaughter.
Some of the positions you can obtain:
What others are saying:
During my four years at Grace College in the Youth Ministry Program, I have been equipped in every aspect of youth ministry. The Youth Ministry major not only provided me with book knowledge, but also with hands on experience that has prepared me the most for ministry. The thing that marked my college career with the Youth Ministry major was that in and through everything, Jesus Christ was the focus! It was evident that I was in the spot where the Lord wanted me to be. The one thing that impacted me the most through my four years was the mentor relationship that developed with T.K. Kurtaneck, who lead me spiritually over the years.
—Todd Shoemaker, B.S., Youth Ministries and Counseling, 2010