The real world experience of Christian leadership extends far beyond the pulpit and into the community at large. To help prepare our students for this aspect of their formation, training for the ministry at CTS involves theory, practice and reflection through a multi-faceted process of learning while serving.
Theological field education at CTS is known as Supervised Concurrent Field Education (SCOFE). Students engage in supervised ministry with a congregation or community agency and regularly reflect on their ministry in an intentional, rigorous manner. SCOFE brings together students, local congregations, supervisors and staff to focus on preparing women and men for leadership in the church and wider community.
CTS students serve as professional staff members of local congregations. They are supervised weekly in those churches by seasoned ministers called Site Supervisors or Mentors. Ministry Support Committees made up of four to seven adults meet with students every month and provide timely, constructive feedback. On the CTS campus, SCOFE Supervisors meet weekly with students in peer groups that explore questions of personal and pastoral identity and the practice of ministry.
In addition to SCOFE, CTS offers additional opportunities for hands-on intellectual, ministerial and personal growth, including:
Learning Ministry Together
In the Learning Ministry Together (LMT) program, students work with pastoral leaders at area churches to ponder different perspectives on church leadership and do purposeful field work that benefits the partnering church.
Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE)
CPE offers supervised experience in pastoral care, which is highly recommended in preparation for careers in congregational ministry, chaplaincy and counseling. CPE programs are offered in conjunction with several accredited training centers around Indiana. Christian Theological Seminary is affiliated with the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education.
Seminary Consortium for Urban Pastoral Education (SCUPE)
Provides a variety of opportunities for students to experience urban ministry in Chicago in a context of theological reflection and sociological analysis. Students who participate may earn academic credit and fulfill the cross-cultural requirement for the Master of Divinity Degree.