Pioneer Leadership 

While most Christian leadership focuses primarily on working in and with local churches helping them to grow in Christ and to reach out in mission, there is an increasing recognition that some are called to focus primarily on the world beyond the church.   Such forms of ministry have in recent years become known as Pioneer Ministry.  This title is used to describe a variety of ministries from church planting to community to a combination of the two.
It is possible to train for such ministries with NBC and to become a nationally accredited, ordained Baptist minister.  While pioneer ministry is not a separate category of ministry in the Baptist Union, NBC provides a form training that gives you the chance to concentrate on pioneer ministry specializing in relevant subjects such as The Bible, mission, how to communicate in a community context, theologies for the city, community analysis and reflective practice.  You will also have a placement in suitable and in a pioneer context.  The training leads to a dual qualification of a diploma (or degree) in theology from the University of Manchester and a professional qualification in community work from the English Standards Board.
To follow this path your call has to be recognized first by your local church and confirmed by your regional association.  You can then apply to study with NBC.  We will invite you to take part in our very careful, very prayerful and very friendly interview process.  Interviews normally take place twice a year, usually in March and May before the academic year in which training begins.
At interview we will work out with you just what training will look like for you.  Some will learn full-time and others part-time. Everyone though will participate in a programme with a number of integrated components:

  • Baptist Leadership Programme – the practical ‘nuts-and-bolts’ of Baptist ministry 

  • Individual tutorials – regular and frequent support and supervision in one-to-one tutorials with members of staff

  • Issue-based Professional Training – including Gender awareness, Racism awareness and Safeguarding

  • Academic Study – pursuing studies leading to a dual qualification of a diploma in theology from the University of Manchester and professional recognition as a community worker by the English Standards Board

  • Placement – ‘hands-on’ experience in pioneer context

  • Continuing Learning – learning is life-long, continuing after ordination e.g. as a Newly Accredited Minister (NAM), in continuing ministerial development (CMD), or pursuing further studies. 

  • Another important part of ministerial formation is one that doesn’t easily fit in a single box - your ongoing spiritual growth as a follower of Jesus.  This takes place in and is affected by every aspect of your time at college but it comes to the surface in particular on placement, in weekly worship, in tutorials and in the annual college staff and student retreat.