Denominational Ordination Processes

Our faculty and both curricular and co-curricular course offerings can assist you if you are pursuing ordination. Each year, Pathways in Ministry offers a panel on Navigating the Ordination Process. Chris Copeland is also available for career counseling. The chart below is another resource that can get you started.


Courses Offered Regularly

*others offered in consultation with the Academic Dean’s Office


Notes on Process


MIN/HIS 682 A History of the Baptists

MIN 790: African American Baptist Life

Dr. Bill J. Leonard

Students should be aware that generally each Baptist congregation sets its ordination process and standards. Ordinands are usually required to be members of the ordaining congregation for a sufficient period of time for congregation and ordinand to have distinct relationships. The American Baptist Churches in the USA (ABCUSA) maintains a more systematic ordination process, guided by specific regions. Contact should be made with the ABCUSA through the ordaining congregation.

Disciples of Christ (Christian Church)

MIN 693: History and Polity of the Christian Church: Disciples of Christ


MIN 647 Episcopal Church Studies I: Sacramental Theology and Liturgics

HIS 648 Episcopal Studies II: The Book of Common Prayer

HIS 683 Anglican Theology and its Historical Roots

MIN 648: The History and Polity of The Epsicopal Church

The Rt. Rev. Dr. Porter Taylor

Specific ordination requires vary between  Diocese, please consult your Bishop.


BIB 501-502 Elementary Hebrew

BIB 511-512 Introduction to NT Greek

Dr. Katherine Shaner

Ordination process (called the Candidacy Process) runs in conversation with the student’s home synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). See for an overview of the process. For students whose church membership is in North Carolina or who are looking to establish church membership while at Wake Div, contact Rev. Beth Kearney (, bishop’s staff liason for candidacy in the North Carolina Synod (


BIB 501-502 Elementary Hebrew

BIB 511-512 Introduction to NT Greek

Courses required for ordination can be taken online and transferred from Moravian Seminary, including Moravian History, Moravian Worship and Polity, Credo, Moravian Theology, and Equipping for Ministries

Local contacts:

Rev. Virginia Tobiasson  

Rev. Daniel Crews

Steps toward ordination in the Southern Province:

Presbyterian (PCUSA)

MIN 641 Congregational Leadership, Presbyterian Polity, and Reformed Theology

MIN 512 Healthy Boundaries: Ministry, Professional Ethics, and Leadership

BIB 501-502 Elementary Hebrew

BIB 511-512 Introduction to NT Greek

Independent study courses in Reformed theology and other themes related to the ordination exam process can be arranged

Dr. John Senior

Dr. Jill Crainshaw

The ordination process in the PCUSA is guided by local presbytery committees called the Committee on Preparation for Ministry. Students seeking ordination in the PCUSA should begin with conversation with their local pastors and then work with their presbytery to enter into the ordination process. PCUSA ordination candidates are required to complete a series of ordination exams. Wake Forest is a site for the exams. Students must have the permission of their presbytery committees to take exams and to move through the various stages of the ordination process. More information about “preparation for ministry” in the PCUSA can be found here: 


SPI 572 Quaker Spirituality

Max Carter at Guilford College has taught this course.

United Church of Christ

MIN 695 United Church of Christ Polity and History

Dr. Michelle Voss Roberts

Gail O’Day

Contact Stephanie Leichman, Registrar of the Western North Carolina Association:

Process outlined in the Manual on Ministry

United Methodist Church

WFUSD students must take some required courses at UM seminaries

Professor Thomas E. Frank

Students should consult the staff member responsible for ordination candidacy in your own annual conference.