Students complete a leadership core and can choose a concentration in a specialty area. Customized specialty areas in Indiana and Florida are sometimes developed in partnership with church professionals at those locations on an as-available basis. Throughout the program, apprentices are mentored by Johnson University instructors, some of whom serve on staff at the participating churches.


Coursework may include:

  • Theology & Dynamics of Strategic Leadership
  • Contextual Implementation of Strategic Leadership
  • Congregational Leadership
  • People and Resource Management

For more details on this program, check out our academic catalog. (link is to PDF of academic catalog)


Graduates with this degree often serve as leaders in the local church. Because students may choose from a variety of concentrations, graduates with this degree include senior pastors, teaching pastors, church administrators, executive pastors, missions pastors, parachurch leaders, sports ministry coordinators, church planters, student pastors, children and family ministers, and worship pastors.



Christian leaders minister in a complex and rapidly changing world. Effective leadership in this context requires a biblically-based philosophy of ministry, skillful analysis of cultural dynamics, the capacity to think and plan strategically, and the ability to lead and equip people to extend the kingdom of God in his world. Johnson University’s Master of Strategic Ministry program involves a partnership between the academy and the church that equips students for this kind of effective, strategic Christian leadership.

The program includes online coursework in strategic ministry, a study trip to Israel, and a 9-month ministry apprenticeship at a partner church in Peoria, Arizona; Indianapolis, Indiana; or Orlando, Florida.

Daniel Overdorf
Program Director

Dept Contact