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School of Ministry

As part of the work of the Council on Ministry, a Center and School of Ministry exists to see to the training of Seventh Day Baptist pastors and leaders in the distinctive theology and practices of Seventh Day Baptists.  

Education is a high value among Seventh Day Baptists.  From our frontier days to the present, we have prioritized training in Christian life and witness as a people.  This is true for all of our people, but especially of our leaders.  For this reason, the Seventh Day Baptist General Conference of the United States and Canada continues to develop and administer educational programs meant to aid members of local churches in making the best use of their various giftings for the glory and advancement of God’s Kingdom.

The education necessary to be a disciple of Jesus Christ is not solely an academic endeavor, however, and so Seventh Day Baptists emphasize both academic and practical education for all of our members.  Equipping the saints for works of service therefore takes many forms, and must take place in the context of local churches.

In addition to certificate level programs in Seventh Day Baptist topics, the school conducts graduate level courses on a rotating three year cycle for participants in our educational programs.  Because these programs typically involve in-person class sessions in the summer, they have traditionally been called Summer Institutes.  The three classes currently offered by the School of Ministry are:

  • Seventh Day Baptist History (last held in 2018)
  • Seventh Day Baptist Applied Ecclesiology (Polity) (to be held in 2019)
  • Sabbath Theology (last held in 2017)

Those interested in more information in the classes are invited to contact our Director of Education and History, Nick Kersten (, who also serves as the Dean of the School of Ministry.

The three Summer Institutes are also a part of Seventh Day Baptist University, a training program for SDB leaders.  In addition, successful completion of the Institutes is required for all Conference credentialing (accreditation for pastors; endorsement for chaplains, etc).

The Seventh Day Baptist School of Ministry holds affiliate status with the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada, but is not an accredited member of the Association.