Certificate in Independent Church Ministry

Through partnership with the Fellowship of Independent Evangelical Churches (FIEC), we are pleased to offer a Certificate in Independent Church Ministry. 

Independent churches are a growing force for the Gospel in 21st Century Scotland. They come in all shapes and sizes and with a variety of historical backgrounds. Those who serve in them need to be well trained both theologically and in the practicalities of leading a self-governing church.

To meet this need FIEC has partnered with ETS to provide training geared specifically to the needs and dynamics of Independent churches. As a network of over 600 Independent churches of all types (Baptist, Brethren, Congregational, Mission Hall, new Plants etc) across the UK, FIEC is uniquely placed to provide wisdom and practical instruction in this area. A range of experienced pastors and ministry leaders will lead sessions sharing their own experiences and knowledge.

Those attending will gain an understanding of the theology and history of Independent churches, along with a range of practical ministry issues. Sessions will allow time for discussion and questions.

Those who attend and complete an optional assignment will be eligible for the ETS Certificate in Independent Church Ministry.

Who is this course for?

ETS offers exisiting students who are preparing to serve in Independent Churches the Certificate in Independent Church Ministry as an optional supplementary module. The Certificate is also open to anyone serving in Independent churches who could benefit from the course.

What does this course cover?

  • Introduction to the theological and ecclesiological rationale for Independent forms of church order, governance, and sacramental practice
  • Exploration of the historical background to the Independent Church tradition as it is today, including key developments and individuals, and assessment of its future trajectory in the UK
  • Introduction to contemporary approaches to Church leadership and issues in Pastoral Care in Independent Churches
  • Examination of missiological challenges in Britain for Independent Churches, and current and potential responses.
You can download the full course programme here.
Play Video

Watch the video above, where FIEC Scotland Director Andy Hunter and ETS student Chris Ranson explain to prospective students what the Independent Church Ministry course involves.

When does the course take place?

This course is offered in alternate years. 

Unfortunately it is not possible to offer the course in 2023-24 however, it is anticipated it will run in 2024-2025

The course runs on Tuesday afternoons at 2pm over 12 weeks. Each session consists of two 45 minute halves with a short break in the middle.

Distance Learning

These courses may be studied either on-campus or by distance learning, or a combination of both. This helps to make them available to a wide group of interested students. You can find out more about distance learning here.

Further Information

Course fees can be found here.

On successful completion of the course, all students will be awarded a Completion of Studies certificate at the Seminary’s Annual Awards Ceremony in May.

We will be accepting applications from June 2024 onwards.