Ordination is usually the main designation that comes to mind when we think of clergy credentials. However, most churches and denominations also have the designations of Commissioned and Licensed. These titles give clear identification as a member of the clergy and clearly identify the level of responsibility. The commissioned minister is generally the entry level while ordination is normally reserved for pastors and other seasoned members of the clergy.
While there is much to consider when choosing a clergy credentialing organization, I have highlighted three that are critically important.
3 Things to consider about Ordination and Clergy credentials
Many years ago I had an experience with a boss that I will never forget. I was the Alaska regional manager for a company that was based in the lower 48 in addition to ministry. Several times a year the company would send my immediate boss to check on the Alaska operation. In one of our first dinners together he told me that he was also an ordained minister.
The shocking part came when he explained that he was not a religious man, but his friend wanted him to do his wedding ceremony so he was ordained. He Received is ordination by going online and filling out the form and paying the required fee. In a matter of days he had his ordination certificate and could then marry his friend.
When considering a credentialing organization you must consider the validity of what they are giving you. Is the ordination worth more than the paper it is printed on? Is the ministerial fellowship or denomination reputable? What do they stand for? Are they going to stand behind you?
The National Conservative Christian Church passes all of these tests and many more. We have been supporting ministers in a large variety of callings for over 18 years. The credentials we issue are more than valid. They are highly regarded by both clergy and state agencies.
Clergy credentials should not only be valid, but there should be ongoing accountability. Without some kind of accountability how does the ministerial fellowship or denomination know what is happening out in the field?
When considering accountability a person’s thinking should go beyond the negative implications of someone getting out of line or falling. We should be asking questions like “what proactive steps does the credentialing organization have in place to keep problems at bay” and “is there a restoration process?”
Accountability is something we take seriously at the National Conservative Christian Church. We have multiple layers of accountability that include things like conference calls, quarterly reporting and yearly renewals, regional directors, regional meetings, and zone meetings. These are designed to create relationships, encourage, train and support ministers. Accountability comes through solid relationships that are based on trust and support.
This should go without saying, but in our current culture I feel the need to highlight this issue. If you, as an ordained minister, call your credentialing organization are you going to receive support?
It is not uncommon for us to speak with ministers who need support, but are not receiving it from their credentialing organization.
Ordination and credentialing should be the beginning of the relationship. If you would like to check out our support system give us a call. We would be glad to spend a few minutes on the phone with you or to answer your email.
We are here to quietly come along side and help you fulfill your calling in Christ.
Blessings in Jesus,Dr. David M. SmuinPresidentwww.NCCChrurch.org