What is Equipped to Minister?

Equipped to Minister is an established, popular and highly valued course taught in London, Birmingham and Histon. It was launched in 2003 with the aim of providing high quality training for those serving in the local church. In the 15 years the course has been in existence over 680 people have attended modules from the course and the course grows in popularity each year. Although the course initially was aimed at churches from the Baptist denomination we now have people from many different church streams attending the course to enable them to develop their ministry in the local church or to grow in their personal discipleship.

Equipped to Minister is a training course for all attendees of churches which aims to equip people to preach, to pastor and to serve in local churches. The course follows a curriculum, recognised by the Baptist Union. It is a pathway of training for those seeking Union recognition as a Recognised Local Minister or people can take individual units for their own interest and development.


Where does the course take place?

Ordinarily, the course takes place once a month on Saturdays at each of the following venues:

    • London, Spurgeon’s College, 189 South Norwood Hill, South Norwood, SE25 6DJ
    • Birmingham, Chester Road Baptist Church, Chester Road, Sutton Coldfield, B73 5HU
    • Histon Baptist Church, 2 Poplar Rd, Histon, Cambridge CB24 9LN


How does the course work?

  • There are twelve modules to choose from.
  • Each module contains twelve hours of contact time divided between two Saturdays (9.00am to 4.00pm) in consecutive months.
  • Each module also requires two assignments for assessment purposes if you wish to receive the Certificate of Achievement for each successfully completed module. These assignments vary in kind from module to module and are normally 1500 words in length
  • Participants not seeking the Certificate of Achievement need not submit the assignments and opt to just attend the lectures.
  • After satisfactory completion of eight modules and assignments, candidates are awarded a Certificate of Achievement which is an internally validated Spurgeon’s award.
  • The course is flexible. Participants can choose to attend individual modules, the modules they are interested in or the whole course. Students book in for a module at a time and therefore can take a break from the course if necessary and return later to attend the modules they have yet to complete.
  • The course operates as a rolling programme and so can be joined at the beginning of each full module.
  • Credit can be given for previous studies where these are documented.
  • No previous qualifications are required. Modules are pitched at ‘Access level’ or A’ Level standard and as such provide a good foundation for those wishing to continue into further study.


Who is this course for?

Equipped to Minister is an ideal starting point for those who wish to deepen their understanding of the Bible, theology, mission, ministry and personal spiritual development, even if they are returning to study after a long break. Many participants find the course a significant step towards developing their service God in their churches. They also find their own personal discipleship is deepened through attending the course lectures. Equipped to Minister has attracted local preachers, Bible study group leaders, lay church leaders, youth workers, pastoral carers and people from a variety of different ministries in the church.


What will I study?

The course is made up of twelve modules:

Module TitleDescription
Module 1: Reading and Using the Bible Part 1 (OT)Understanding the story of the Bible and engaging thoughtfully with it, including with selected texts.
Module 2: Exploring Christian Belief Part 1The framework of Christian faith and belief and its relevance in the contemporary world.
Module 3: Leading WorshipA holistic approach to worship. The development of specific skills, including insights into music and all-age worship. The module includes a practical assignment in worship leading.
Module 4: Reading and Using the Bible Part 2 (NT)Deepening our understanding the Bible story and engaging thoughtfully with it, including further selected texts.
Module 5: Evangelism and MissionCongregational, friendship, servant and relational evangelism in contemporary society.
Module 6: PreachingDifferent preaching skills and the theology behind them. The module includes a practical preaching assignment.
Module 7: SpiritualityExploring what is meant by spirituality with a look at selected texts from the spiritual traditions. Growing as a Christian believer.
Module 8: Exploring Christian Belief Part 2A further exploration of core Christian doctrines and their implications for Christian living.
Module 9: Pastoral CareThe context of pastoral care today. Developing self-awareness and basic counselling skills. A look at particular pastoral issues.
Module 10: Baptist History and PrinciplesAn exploration of where Baptists came from, of the Baptist way of being the church and of contemporary issues such as baptism, membership and the place of children.
Module 11: Church Management and LeadershipLeadership and management in the church. The conduct of church meetings, funerals, weddings. Conflict skills and resolution.
Module 12: History of Christianity: The Story of God’s PeopleThis independent study module is made up of guided reading and assessed through three extended essays.

How much does it cost?

Each module of Equipped to Minister costs £92 and you book in and pay for each module as it comes around.

Course participants are encouraged to approach their local churches and their Baptist Associations for financial assistance.


What are the module dates for the course?

In order to book for a specific module, new applicants must have submitted a complete application by 8am on the date in brackets. Otherwise applicants will be required to wait until the next available module to begin their studies.

Unit name
Dates (Closing Dates)
Unit name
Dates (Closing Dates)
Unit name
Dates (Closing Dates)
Reading and Using the Bible 2
8 June 2024 (5 June 2024)
13 July 2024 (10 July 2024)
Baptist History and Principles
6 July 2024 (5 July 2024)
7 September 2024 (4 September 2024)
22 June 2024 (19 June 2024)
3 August 2024 (31 July 2024)
Evangelism and Mission
14 September 2024 (11 September 2024)
12 October 2024 (9 October 2024)
Church Management and Leadership
5 October 2024 (2 October 2024)
2 November 2024 (30 October 2024)
Reading and Using the Bible 1
21 September 2024 (18 September 2024)
19 October 2024 (16 October 2024)
9 November 2024 (6 November 2024)
14 December 2024 (11 December 2024)
Reading and Using the Bible 1
7 December 2024 (4 December 2024)
4 January 2025 (1 January 2025)
Baptist History and Principles
16 November 2024 (13 November 2024)
14 December 2024 (11 December 2024)

How can I apply?

To apply to join the Equipped to Minister course in either London or Birmingham please use one of these online application forms. New applications must be submitted at least three working days before the module begins. Deadlines for each module are in brackets in the table above. Unfortunately this course is not open for international applications at this time.


You can download a copy of the course brochure for more information.

For general questions about the course please email: etm@spurgeons.ac.uk


For questions about the EtM course Baptist Union recognition please email the Course administrator: etm@spurgeons.ac.uk