Christian Leadership

Influence Lives for God's Glory

A degree in Christian leadership will help you impact a faith community and find satisfaction in a life of service and discipleship. Churches, congregations, Bible study groups, and mission-related organizations all need people of passion to guide others on their faith journeys. Train in biblical studies to enable your own spiritual growth, share your entrepreneurial spirit and inspire discipleship.

What jobs can you do with a 
Christian leadership degree?  

Join a faith ministry with a career as a: 

Church pastor and/or church planter 
Children’s ministry coordinator 
Youth pastor 
Missions mobilizer
Worship leader
Church camp
of humanitarian emergency relief
Church administrator
Church-based counselor

What's the Difference? 

  • Celebrate DWU’s United Methodist heritage.  
  • Build relationships in a diverse and inclusive atmosphere.  
  • Learn from Christian leaders and teachers who will focus on your spiritual strengths. 

Internships provide real-life training and experience that you just can’t find in a classroom. Students with internship experience have higher hiring potential and are in demand at regional agencies and ministries.  

Travel Immersion Experiences

Each summer, DWU sends students to Peru, Uganda and/or Israel. These trips are financially accessible because of the extensive fundraising involved and the travel scholarships available to you. The trips offer transformative experiences of worship, friendship, team-building and spiritual encouragement. 

An Inclusive Spiritual Community

DWU is proud of our United Methodist heritage, and we work hard to foster diversity in an inclusive atmosphere. During your time at DWU, you’ll enjoy dialogue with other students, along with an internal conversation between your own mind and soul. You are encouraged to build relationships and develop yourself to help serve both God and others.  

Christian Leadership Courses

Your education will provide you with the tools to lead with confidence and a willing spirit.  

PHL 220 Introduction to Ethical Issues

3 Hours
This course examines ethical decision making in the context of contemporary issues that are a part of our personal and social life, such as lying, sexual morality, capital punishment, war and euthanasia.

REL 112 Christian Faith and Practice

3 Hours
This course will explore the intellectual content of historic Christian faith as it has been expressed in the ecumenical creeds and other features of the Christian theological tradition.

REL 155 Spiritual Formation

1 Hours
Students will meet with a spiritual director for the purposes of spiritual study, devotion and growth. Prerequisite: Consent of instructor. Repeatable for two credits.

REL 210 Understanding the Old Testament

3 Hours
Students explore the basic teachings of the Hebrew scriptures as represented in the teachings, prophets and poetry of the Old Testament. This course gives attention to the Old Testament’s meaning in its own historical setting, as well as its connections to the New Testament and Christianity.

REL 215 The Life and Teaching of Jesus

3 Hours
This course examines the Gospels in their historical setting and contemporary significance and is aimed at understanding what we know about Jesus and the lifestyle he lived and taught.

REL 216 The Life and Letters of Paul

3 Hours
This course examines Paul’s life and letters in the context of the growth and problems of the early churches

REL 302 Faith and Reason

3 Hours
This class will explore the tensions between faith and reason, the reasonableness of historic Christian Faith and the tensions between religion and science. It will shed light on questions concerning belief in God, the scriptures as divine revelation, views on interpretation of the biblical creation stories, science and design inferences from science.

REL 314 World Religions

3 Hours
This course is a comparative survey of the major religious systems of the world, both Eastern and Western, with emphasis on those religions currently in practice.

REL 323 Biblical Interpretation/Proclamatn

3 Hours
This course will introduce students to best principles and practices for biblical interpretation. The class will explore the history of biblical interpretation, biblical interpretation as it is practiced within the Bible itself and various theories of text interpretation. The class will seek to train students in best practices for teaching and preaching the scriptures in a church context. Prerequisites: REL 210, REL 215 or REL 216.

REL 340 Exploring Christian Ministry

3 Hours
This course will explore the basic components of a successful Christian ministry. The class will be constructed to allow for student interest and aptitude. Some projects and readings will address the student’s own gifts and graces whether that be for children’s ministry, youth ministry, pastoral ministry, missions or senior adult ministry. Prerequisite: REL 112 and REL 210.

REL 355 Spiritual Formation II

1 Hours
Students will meet with a spiritual director for the purposes of spiritual study, devotion and growth. Prerequisite: Consent of Instructor. Repeatable for two credits

REL 360 Death, Dying, and Life after Death

3 Hours
The course explores the biological process of dying, the various meanings that cultures attach to death and what different world religions teach about life after death. The course gives attention to near-death experiences, the process of grieving and the biblical concepts of immortality of the soul, resurrection of the body and eternal life.

REL 490 Religion Capstone

3 Hours
The capstone course brings the student learning experience to its apex. It will include a research project which will be presented publicly. Prerequisite: REL 112, REL 210 and REL 340.

Get to Know Your Professors

Our low student-to-teacher ratio offers valuable one-on-one interaction with professors who focus on your spiritual strengths. 

Joel Allen, Ph.D.

Professor of Religion and Philosophy | Director of the McGovern Center

Christian Leadership + Nonprofit Administration

These two majors make a natural fit.

Nonprofits make up one of the fastest growing and most available job markets.
Add value to your education with a double-major in Christian leadership
and nonprofit administration.  

Earn an income and do something you are passionate about. This combination of majors is designed to be: 

  • Relevant, practical and contemporary: You’ll take theory classes along with classes that focus on practical management and administration skills. 
  • Innovative and engaging: Nearly half of your courses will have you apply what you learn in the classroom to real-world situations. You will have regular opportunities to conduct research and present at conferences. 
  • Related to the global environment: Whether you take world religions or take part in an immersion experience in Uganda, you will have plenty of opportunities to experience global perspectives. 

Related Majors & Minors


Lead any organization to success with your Communication degree.

    Entrepreneurial Leadership

    Do you dream of bringing your business idea to life? Foster your entrepreneurial spirit, and learn how to balance risk and problem solving.

      Nonprofit Administration

      DWU offers the only nonprofit administration major in the region.

        Religious Studies

        Explore world religions, ethical decision-making, biblical studies and theological perspectives.


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