Master of Arts in Christian Ministries

(c) ECS_MA in Christian Ministries

“The playing field has changed! Anyone hoping to engage in ministry in today’s complex and rapidly changing world knows we need all the help we can get. For those already in ministry who are hungry to keep learning and growing, Emmanuel’s online masters degree is a great solution.”

~ Ben Cachiaras, Senior Pastor, Mountain Christian Church


The Program

This three-year 48-credit hour practical ministries program is a distance education degree designed to enhance the work you are already doing in ministry, without relocation. The curriculum combines both online courses and 1-2 on-campus residency weeks each year. Professors come alongside you to teach you how to better apply theological concepts in your real-world ministry contexts. And your student cohort becomes a tight-knit group of friends and colleagues who continue to support and learn from each other’s various backgrounds and experiences. The world of ministry is changing, and Emmanuel can prepare you to better meet the needs of the people you are serving.

Courses are offered in the following areas:

  • Christian Ministries (15 credit hours)
  • Biblical Studies (15 credit hours)
  • Church History and Christian Theology (12 credit hours)
  • Spiritual Formation/Mentored Ministry Experience (6 credit hours)

View all details and course requirements for this program in the Milligan College Catalog. The Milligan College academic catalog is the official, authoritative source for all academic requirements and policies. Any discrepancies in curricular requirements from other sources will default to the Catalog.

The Schedule

The MACM starts a new cohort of students each January. Students can complete the program in three years if they follow the spring-summer-fall sequence starting in January. However, students may begin during other semesters and pursue the program completion at a more gradual pace to meet scheduling needs.

schedule & calendar »      course descriptions »

Residential Weeks for Hybrid Courses

Students visit campus 5 times during the course of the program. Housing options will be provided by the MACM Office.

Many meals are provided for students, allowing time for interaction with residential students and faculty members and staff. Other times students can explore the variety of restaurants in the area or utilize the Milligan cafeteria. Details for meals will be provided prior to residential weeks.

Students who choose to fly to Tri-Cities Regional Airport (TRI) for residential weeks will be offered transportation assistance to and from this airport, located 30 minutes from campus. These arrangements can made through the Master of Arts in Christian Ministries Office.

Transfer of Credits, Advanced Standing, and Shared Credits

Current students and applicants who have taken courses at other accredited graduate institutions may receive transfer credit for courses that are comparable to offerings in the Emmanuel curriculum. Transfer of credit is not automatic; it is conditional upon approval by the Academic Dean of the Seminary in consultation with the faculty. Students seeking transfer of credit, or who wish to transfer to Emmanuel from another accredited graduate institution, may be asked to present a letter of good standing from the institution.  Learn more »


The majority of our students qualify for scholarships. We are committed to making your graduate degree as affordable as possible. Apply early for maximum aid. Learn more »

Be sure to check out our competitive Honors Scholarship, the Barton W. Stone Scholarship. Students must start the program in January.  Apply by mid-October!


What our Graduates Say

  • I was deeply impressed at how much the faculty cared about the students. They modeled pastoral care for us.
  • Even though one professor only had me online, when I came to campus she recognized me, called me by name, and asked about my ministry at the church.
  • I looked at the qualifications of the faculty and found them to be very intimidating – but when I met them, they seemed eager just to spend some time getting to know me.
  • My classes pushed me out of my comfort zone and forced me to grow. I can’t believe how different I am now from what I was three years ago.
  • I have an entirely new worldview now.
  • You can tell that the professors see their job as a ministry.
  • The Bible means so much more to me than it did before I came into the program.
  • This program literally saved my faith. I had been reading some of the new atheists to be able to relate better to students, and it really messed with my mind to the point where I could hardly pray or read the Bible anymore. But my Emmanuel classes helped me reframe my faith and see how I had been operating from an inadequate paradigm.
  • Being able to come to chapel and worship with the faculty and residential students during our weeks on campus was amazing.
  • I feel prepared to keep learning, and know now how to make it happen.
  • The rhythm of the courses was perfect. It meshed very well with the church calendar.
  • This was, by far, the best thing I’ve ever been a part of. I’m actively recruiting for the school now.

Class Previews

Hear some of our faculty share a brief overview about their courses and what they love about this program.

New Testament Writings


The Church & The Stone Campbell Movement


Christological Principles for Ministry


Curriculum Development for Teaching & MINISTRY


 English Bible Exegesis: Philippians


Introduction to Biblical Studies


Personal Identity in Pastoral Care

schedule & calendar »      course descriptions »


  • Due to the unique program design, this program is not available to students who live in residence at Emmanuel Christian Seminary.
  • Students who began their studies at Emmanuel and then moved away from campus due to jobs, families, or other situations may contact the Academic Dean’s Office regarding petitioning the faculty to become part of this degree program.
  • Students who completed an MAR at Emmanuel may contact the Academic Dean’s Office about enrolling in this degree.
  • Former and current students do not need to reapply but will need to go through a faculty petition process to apply for this program.
  • As a member of the National Council for State Reciprocity (NC-SARA), Emmanuel Christian Seminary at Milligan can offer the MACM program in all participating states. Contact us to find out if the program is available in your state.

Technology Requirements

Students will need to meet the following technology requirements for their online courses:


  • Broadband Connection: 256 kbps+ (Cable / DSL or better)
  • A PC or Mac computer
  • Microsoft Office 2010 or newer. Copies of Microsoft Windows 7 and 10, and Microsoft Office 2010 and 2013 and 2016 are available as a part of the technology fee through  If you are using a Mac, copies of Office for Mac 2011 and Office for Mac 2016 are also available.


  • Webcam


  • Windows 7 or newer
  • Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard) or newer


  • Internet Explorer 7 or newer
  • Mozilla Firefox 3.6 or newer
  • Chrome 5.0 or newer
  • Safari 4.0.5 or newer


  • The most recent versions of Adobe Reader and Adobe Flash Player (available for free download from