Ministerial Credentialing Process

The credentialing of Church of God ministers is a ministry formation process. In this process, the church partners with the individual to help the individual develop the abilities to fulfill his/her divine call and place of ministry. This developmental journey occurs through personal discovery, education, training, and becoming a credentialed minister in the Church of God.

Completed CAMS and MIP applications are due in the state office by June 30.

Read more below about these programs, the primary means for completing this ministry formation process.

To obtain CAMS or MIP applications, please call 540.362.1549, Ext. 103 or email md@vacog.org.

1. Calling and Ministry Studies (CAMS).

An individual who desires to enroll in CAMS must first enter the licensure process by completing a New Minister/Calling and Ministry Studies (CAMS)/Exhorter Application and submitting to a background check.
CAMS consists of two sections: seminars and individual study. The purposes of the seminars are (a) to identify how an individual knows he/she has a divine call, (b) to explain what the meaning and practices of ministry are, and (c) to help the applicant determine what his/her divine call is and understand what ministry is. The seminars are attended by both applicant and spouse.

The CAMS applicant completes three Certificate in Ministerial Studies (CIMS) courses through individual study. In addition, the applicant writes three papers on the following: His/her calling into the ministry, his/her view of ministry, and his/her ministry identity. The spouse writes a paper on his/her calling into ministry and a paper on his/her view of ministry.

After successful completion of CAMS and recommendation by the Ministerial Development Board, one is ready to purchase an Exhorter Study Guide and is eligible to test for Exhorter credentials.



2. Ministerial Internship Program (MIP).

An Exhorter desiring to advance to the rank of Ordained Minister must complete an Ordained Minister/Ministerial Internship Program (MIP) Application.

MIP provides intensive training under the direction of a supervising pastor for a period of eight months. During the training period, the candidate and spouse follow a daily schedule of spiritual, academic, and physical assignments. This involves completion of Certificate in Ministerial Studies (CIMS) courses through individual study. The training also includes eight seminars, periodic evaluations, examinations for the CIMS courses, personal counseling, and ministry experience under the direction of the supervising pastor.

At the conclusion of the training period, MIP candidates are commissioned and awarded a certificate of completion from Ministerial Development/School of Ministry. After successful completion of MIP, one is ready to purchase an Ordained Minister Study Guide and is eligible to test for Ordained Minister credentials.
Explanation of CIMS Credits: All students who successfully complete CIMS courses during CAMS and MIP will receive CIMS credits. Certificate in Ministerial Studies courses are not college courses and do not provide college credits. These credits are for a certificate. Lee University will accept and apply up to 32 CIMS credits toward a degree from Lee University. The credits are applied after the student has taken 12 credits from Lee University. Some (not all) other colleges will accept CIMS credits. Colleges have the option to accept credits at their discretion.