Christian Ministry (BA)
“Go therefore, and teach all nations…” ~Matthew 28:19
Anyone who wants to more deeply understand God’s work in the world will enjoy pursuing a Christian Ministry major or minor in the Department of Theology. This degree is especially appropriate for those who wish to serve the body of Christ as a minister in a church, a missionary, someone in parachurch ministry, or in whatever setting God calls you. We value our Baptist heritage, but our faculty and students are broadly evangelical, drawing from a variety of traditions and denominations. Thus, we welcome anyone who would wish to study with us.
The Christian Ministry major is the broadest of our four undergraduate degrees. It is 45 credit hours-long, with 18 hours of core classes, 15 hours of electives, 4 hours of Spiritual Formation, 6 hours of biblical languages, and 2 hours of Senior Seminar. The core courses for the major are New Testament Theology, Old Testament Theology, History of Christianity, Hermeneutics, Systematic Theology, the Christian Vocation, and the Senior Seminar. We also offer a wide variety of electives which allow you to tailor your studies to your interests, such as Jesus and the Gospels, Romans, Revelation, Homiletics, Paul and His Letters, Isaiah, the Reformation, and Spiritual Formation.
Our broad program focusing on Biblical Studies, Theology, and Practical Ministry will give you a foundation for a variety of ministries and will prepare you for graduate studies such as in our Master of Arts in Theological Studies (MATS), Master of Arts in Christian Leadership (MACL), or a Master of Divinity (MDiv).
HCU offers several types of scholarships to help our incoming students. Our students will especially want to be aware of these scholarships.
The Baptist General Convention of Texas funds scholarships for our Southern Baptist students who are pursuing ministry as a vocation. The BGCT scholarship amount is currently $50 per credit hour for freshmen and sophomores, and $75 per credit hour for juniors and seniors. In addition to the denominational eligibility requirements, students must take two classes during their time at HCU: the Christian Vocation and Baptist History.
The BGCT also supports students financially with the Mary Hill Davis Ethnic/Minority Scholarship. It currently provides $800/semester (for full-time students) who are from a non-Anglo background and are part of a BGCT church that is representative of their ethnic/minority heritage. Note: the scholarship application should be submitted directly to the Mary Hill Davis Scholarship Office [not to HBU] no later than April 15.
The purpose of the Covenant Fellows Program is to give students called to Christian ministry financial, personal and professional support as they further their undergraduate development into competent and holistically educated ministers/professors/missionaries. HCU covenants with our students and with local churches to provide education and professional experiences that will prove beneficial to both those studying in the program and those churches supporting and employing our ministerial students. One of the benefits of the program is that participants may receive scholarship money during their junior and senior years, per meeting the requirements of the program. Click to learn more about Covenant Fellows.
Further Graduate Studies: Seminary and Other Options
Most students preparing for ministry pursue some type of graduate degree to help them further prepare for ministry. Traditionally, the Master of Divinity (MDiv) has been the standard degree, as it provides the most well-rounded and robust training for ministry. Our 75-hour MDiv prepares you, not just for Bible study and academic knowledge, but it focuses on your personal development as a Christian and a minister to the church through practical experience. Similar to the MDiv, we offer a 40-hour Master of Arts in Christian Leadership (MACL) designed to meet the needs of those preparing for vocational or lay ministry, or those who just want to further their own personal development. For students who wish to pursue a more academically focused and shorter degree, we offer a 40-hour Master of Arts in Theological Studies (MATS) that gives the core foundation desired by churches, but provides more flexibility in course selection.
There are a variety of ways to engage the Department of Theology: we’re on Facebook, we offer an annual Theology Conference, and we have regular lectures by preeminent scholars as part of the A.O. Collins Lecture Series.