Note: applications are closed for the 2017-2018 apprenticeship year. Applications will reopen Summer of 2018.
Immanuel’s Pastoral Apprenticeship is a three-year program designed to raise up men from within the church who will shepherd this congregation for years to come, as well as to train men to be sent out to churches in America and to the nations. We want to entrust the gospel message to faithful men who will be able to teach others also (2 Tim. 2:2). The apprenticeship program includes biblical and theological study in a classroom setting, as well as opportunities to observe and participate in practical, pastoral ministry. We want to see men grow in knowledge, character, and experience, so we structure our efforts to address all of these areas.
Our goal is not to produce graduates, but faithful shepherds.
Pastoral training can, unintentionally, often lead men into a sea of books and away from the text of Scripture; other times it can lead men into viewing Scripture simply as a subject to be mastered. We’re committed to helping men avoid both pitfalls. For the first year, apprentices will learn and drink deeply from the rich theology of the book of Romans, reading, discussing, and applying this powerful book together. Apprentices will also engage deeply and prayerfully with common “ministry scenarios.” Each first year apprentice will prepare, deliver, and be critiqued on a sermon preached to the class. They’ll also be involved in a strategic ministry connected to Immanuel.
After spending a full year immersed in Biblical study, apprentices become the practitioners, and we ask them to test and sharpen their skills by teaching through all genres of Scripture and core biblical doctrines. Apprentices will read weekly theological assignments, coordinating with lectures and discussions. These discussions won’t be able to solve all of the deepest theological questions, but will rather give apprentices a sure foundation for a lifetime of handling theological issues in the local church.
The third year aims to provide apprentices with the wisdom and experience necessary to put their biblical and theological knowledge to use in the church. A variety of practical ministry topics are covered, including church planting, ecclesiology, Biblical counseling, mercy ministry, Baptist distincives, missions, and spiritual warfare. Each apprentice will also prepare and present a ministry project. The third year will culminate with the personal assessment by the elders, followed by a possible affirmation & recommendation to the apprentice for his next steps in his ministry to the Lord and His church.
It will require what is often required of pastors.