Bi-vocational pastors are on the rise in our country and the average attendance on Sundays is decreasing.
The ministry of a bi-vocational pastor is just as demanding as the ministry of a full-time pastor, possibly even more demanding. I was blessed to serve as a bi-vocational pastor for the previous six years, while maintaining a job as a teacher and a K-12 Christian school administrator.
The balance between my calling, vocation, and family was a difficult path to walk. However, God made a way for things to happen; sometimes it seemed the clock stood still. In my current position at Clear Creek Baptist Bible College, I am able to serve the Lord in a full-time capacity.
In a recent study completed by the Kentucky Baptist Convention, focusing on bi-vocational pastors, it was found that more than 50 percent of pastors in Kentucky serve in a bi-vocational capacity. While not all associations reported, the number of bi-vocational pastors serving in Kentucky is 1,267. Statistics show that 75 percent of pastors serving in eastern Kentucky require another source of income to sustain their family.
Clear Creek Baptist Bible College has a heart for the bi-vocational pastor. One way Clear Creek expresses our love for the bi-vocational pastor is through our Bi-Vocational Certificate Program.
Starting in the spring 2019 semester, a limited number of bi-vocational pastors from Southern Baptist Convention churches will have the opportunity to complete the certificate tuition-free through the gracious Cooperative Program support of our Kentucky Baptist Convention churches and the financial support of individual donors who have provided scholarships to cover tuition. Students will only be responsible for a registration fee, part time Student Service Fee and the cost of their books each semester.
The bi-vocational certificate will consist of 18 credit hours. Coursework will include eight hours in Bible, six hours in doctrine and theology, and classes in church revitalization and spiritual formation. The certificate will be completed across three semesters, by taking seven hours per semester the first two semesters and then four hours the last semester. The entire certificate will be delivered online to accommodate the busy schedule of the bi-vocational pastor. The online cohort will begin together and take every class together.
The opportunity to earn this certificate tuition free is extremely limited and will only be offered to the first few applicants who are serving as bi-vocational pastors in Southern Baptist churches and who have never taken classes at Clear Creek before.
Our spring semester online cohort will begin their certificate work in January 2019 and will complete their studies in May of 2020. Any student above the limit applicant total accepted from the Southern Baptist Convention Churches, may complete the program at our current tuition rate.
For more information please contact us at (866) 340-3196 or visit us online at www.ccbbc.edu.
Matt Black is Dean of Institutional Advancement at Clear Creek Baptist Bible College in Pineville, Ky.