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D.Min in Congregational Development


At Bexley Seabury, our low-residence doctor of ministry students have an unparalleled opportunity to learn, stretch, challenge themselves and others, and emerge at the end of three years with exceptional skills in leadership and deeper theological grounding for innovative and effective congregational ministry.

Students study with and learn from the outstanding faculty at Bexley Seabury, expert practitioners in fields related to congregational development, and peers. To integrate theory and practice, our DMin program includes collaborative study in small groups, lecture and discussion, online reflection throughout the year with a core group, case studies, a congregational study, and a thesis. For details please provide your contact information.

Our DMin in Congregational Development encourages students to reflect theologically on the nature of the church, understand the challenges and opportunities facing today’s faith communities, analyze congregations and their contexts, practice effective community organizing and strategizing, and develop a learning community with others who are asking similar questions. Read abstracts of theses written by past DMin students.

A new cohort of students begins the program each June; applications are due April 30, with priority admission for students who apply by January 15. Learn more about the application process.


This program requires a minimum of three years and no more than six years to complete.

Required Courses (29 credits)

Reimagining Congregations in Mission

Organizational Systems

Community Development for the New Age

Diversity and Context

Leading Non-profits in the 21st Century

Making Mission Possible in Tough Times

Research Methods (1  credit hour course)

Thesis Proposal Practicum

Congregational Study  (1 credit)

In addition, each student is required to take two accredited 3-credit DMin-level elective courses which may be online, an intensive, a regular residential semester course, or a transfer course.

Additional Program Requirements

Participation in on-line core group throughout the year, with expert practitioner supervision

Reflection papers on relevant readings shared on-line with core group

A case study of an experience from your ministry shared on-line with core group

Thesis Project and Oral Review

For more detailed information, contact Emlyn Ott, Director of Lifelong Theological Education and Doctor of Ministry Program.

Diploma and Certificate in Congregational Development

A Diploma in Congregational Development may be pursued by those interested in advanced study, yet do not want or need a degree. The academic credit requirements for the diploma are as follows: 8 DMin Required Courses, 2 Elective Courses [no Thesis Proposal Practicum or thesis required.]

A Certificate in Congregational Development may be awarded for those pursuing advanced study when the following requirements are met: 5 out of the 8 Core Required DMin Courses, including Congregational Study [no Thesis Proposal Practicum or thesis required].

Continuing Education and Non-Credit Opportunities

All courses taught in the DMin in Congregational Development program are open to all students of faith, space permitting. People seeking enrichment or with an intellectual curiosity may take the courses for Continuing Education Units or simply for their own educational value. Such students are expected to read materials assigned and be prepared to participate in classroom discussions. Enrichment/Audit students do not submit the assignments required for the course. The instructor is not required to read or respond to assignments submitted by Enrichment/Audit students.