The primary purpose of the Billy Graham School of Missions, Evangelism and Ministry is to conduct a post-baccalaureate professional and graduate theological curriculum with an emphasis on Great Commission ministries. In so doing, it seeks to equip students for ministry as pastors, teachers, evangelists, missionaries, urban ministers, church planters, and denominational workers. In addition, the Billy Graham School seeks to render training that is foundational for all other church-related ministries that emphasize missions, evangelism, and church growth. The Billy Graham School seeks to provide a sound biblical and theological foundation while providing practical training in ministry.
The wide spectrum within which Christian ministers function necessitates both comprehensive and highly specialized education. To meet the demand for comprehensiveness, students are exposed to a nucleus of courses and seminars that will enable them to think theologically and to make practical application. To meet the demand for specialization, each student has the opportunity to focus his or her interests in an area of specialized vocational preparation: missions, evangelism, church planting, black church and urban ministry, church growth, communications, world religions, pastoral ministry, and other specializations.
The Billy Graham School seeks to serve and to lead the denomination of which it is a part. The Southern Baptist Convention has always been a missions-centered denomination, and the Billy Graham School focuses upon and continues that historic tradition. While closely related to the academic and evangelical Christian communities of the world, the focus of the Billy Graham School is Christian ministry in Southern Baptist churches and on mission fields.
Overview of Academic Programs
Academic programs in the Billy Graham School are of two types.
The basic professional programs designed to equip qualified students for the practice of ministry are the Diploma in Missions, the Master of Arts in Theological Studies, and the Master of Divinity degree.
The professional doctoral degrees are the Doctor of Ministry degree and the Doctor of Missiology degree. The Doctor of Missiology degree includes a research component that is field-based. The research doctoral programs designed to qualify advanced students for research and teaching, as well as for other specialized leadership positions, include the Master of Theology degree and the Doctor of Philosophy degree.
The Master of Divinity is offered in several formats:
- The normal format with classes on weekdays
- A special format with some classes offered in the evening
- An ethnic format with classes taught bilingually in Vietnamese and English
- An ethnic format with classes taught in Spanish
Professional studies in missions, evangelism and church growth are offered to equip qualified students for the practice of effective Christian ministry.
The goal of this faculty is for every graduate:
- To be a called disciple and minister of Jesus Christ, serving his Kingdom
- To possess an abiding love for people and the work of Christian ministry in the context of the church
- To bear witness to the truth of Holy Scripture
- To maintain the historic principles of the Christian faith and of the Baptist heritage
- To learn and do Great Commission ministries in the areas of missions, evangelism and church growth
Great Commission ministry demands preparation in four distinct yet related dimensions:
- Christian commitment, integrity, and spirituality
- Mature, integrated, and functional personhood
- Knowledge of the Bible and of historic and contemporary Christian thought and practice
- Specialized training and skill development in missions, evangelism, church growth, communication, world religions, and church and society
Research Doctoral Programs
Research doctoral programs in the Billy Graham School of Missions, Evangelism and Ministry are designed to give students of superior ability an opportunity to prepare themselves thoroughly for effective leadership in religious thought and life, particularly in light of the Great Commission.
This purpose embraces the preparation of students for many areas of service. Its main objective is the advanced preparation of pastors and teachers of religion. Each program of study is designed to equip the student for creative scholarship and its application to Christian ministry.