Small Groups or Bible Studies are a staple of a local church. Local volunteers often fill these leadership roles at the local church. Christian Leaders Institute has designed a program of study that brings free ministry training to Christian Leaders. This program includes 26 credits of ministry training.

Steps to be ordained as a Small Group Minister

  1. Enroll at Christian Leaders Institute and complete the Getting Started Class: Scholar Orientation.
  2. Complete the Deacon Ministry Award
    1. Christian Leaders Connection (3 credits)
    2. Christian Basics (3 credits)
    3. Ministry 101 (3 credits)
  3. Complete the Deacon Minister Ordination Class (1 credit)
    1. Get three recommendations from your local community, possibly including a Christian Leaders Alliance ordained mentor.
    2. Receive your official ordination documents from Christian Leaders Alliance, sent through the Christian Leaders Institute offices.
    3. Be ordained by the laying on of hands.
    4. Be included in the Christian Leaders Alliance ordination directory.
  4. Complete the additional 15 credits of ministry training
    1. Old Testament Survey (3 credits)
    2. New Testament Survey (3 credits)
    3. People Smart for Ministry (3 credits)
    4. Church and Ministry (3 credits)
    5. Developing House Churches (3 credits)
  5. Take the Ordained Small Group Minister Class (1 credit) and order your updated ordination credentials.

Ordained Small Group Minister (1 Credit)

This one credit hour class is for those leading small groups or Bible Studies. The dynamics of this course are centered around leading small groups at local churches. Your studies will focus on three areas. The first is Biblical content. The second is relationships and group dynamics. The third is communication.

As an Ordained Small Group Minister, your training will be for the following roles:

Small Group Minister
House Church Minister
Bible Study Leader
Sunday School Teacher
Cell Group Leader

Ordained Small Group Minister Training Requirements Review:

  • Christian Leaders Connection (3 credits)
  • Ministry 101 (3 Credits)
  • Christian Basics (3 credits)
  • Old Testament Survey (3 Credits)
  • New Testament Survey (3 Credits)
  • People Smart for Ministry (3 credits)
  • Church and Ministry (3 credits)
  • Developing House Churches (3 Credits)
  • Deacon Minister Ordination (1 Credit)
  • Ordained Small Group Minister Class (1 Credit)

Total Credits: 26

Wedding Officiant with CLA

Wedding officiant
Wedding officiant

My name is Clayton Lissow, and I am studying at CLI in the licensed wedding officiant program. Currently, I serve as a middle school teacher for a Christian school in California. I have been a Christian since 1992. I always had a belief in God. However, my relationship with the Lord was not personal at the time. After graduating high school, God opened the door for me to play college football at a small Christian college in Springfield, Missouri. Over the year, God spoke to my heart. Soon, I knew Him as my Savior.

My Ministry Journey

Over the past twenty years, I served in one ministry or another. God always led me. I am currently on the board at my church and actively follow God’s lead in serving my church in whatever capacity needed.

God has blessed me with a beautiful wife and four amazing children. My sister-in-law approached me a couple of months ago about serving as her and her future husband’s wedding officiant. It honored me that they respected me and my faith and wanted me to officiate their ceremony.

Therefore, I began looking into what the requirements were of being a wedding officiant. I found that there were many fly-by-night avenues to getting a paper certification to complete the required certification. However, I wanted to ascertain that my certification was not just a piece of paper. I wanted to know in my heart that it was God led and approved.

Finding CLI for the Licensed Wedding Officiant Program

So, after researching different websites and getting my pastor’s approval, I chose the Christian Leaders Institute. I am thrilled with the Wedding Officiant program and look forward to completing the necessary steps. Then, I can honor God and make their ceremony one that honors Him as well.

I am also very blessed by the ministry-minded leaders within the Christian Leaders Alliance. I look forward to seeing what other programs I may want to complete in the future. May God continue to bless this ministry.

Learn more about ordination at the Christian Leaders Alliance. Interested in a low-cost degree? Check out the Christian Leaders College.

Licensed Ministry Officiant

Online Training and Ordination

Online Training and Ordination

My name is James W. Lewis, and I am receiving online training at CLI and ordination with CLA. I live in Brantford, Ontario, Canada. One of the hardest things to do is to write about yourself because you don’t want to come off as being arrogant or self-centered. I will do my best to tell you who I am and how this free ministry training from Christian Leaders Institute has changed my life. Also, this deacon minister ordination with the Christian Leaders Alliance will help me in my ministry calling.

I have been a student at Christian Leaders Institute for three and a half years. During this time, I have amassed 35 certificates and awards and completed 15 full courses. Although the Christian Leaders Institute offers free ministry training to everyone, I felt the need to become a monthly silver vision partner. I am a vision partner so that those who cannot afford school can get this fantastic Christian education.

Early Years

My path to following our heavenly Father began at a young age. My parents were not religious people. However, they believed that my sisters and I should go to church. My sisters went to a Baptist church, and I chose a Catholic church. During my time at the Catholic Church as a child, I wanted to become a priest. As I got older and in my teens, I discovered girls and never followed through with becoming a priest.

Next Steps to Online Training and Ordination

In my early 20s, my life took a downward spiral. I fell into a deep depression, had suicidal thoughts, and wanted to end my life. I felt no one cared whether I lived or died. Having very few friends, I felt isolated and alone. Then I met a man named Randy, who was my neighbor. He introduced me to a nondenominational church. I went with him every Sunday and every Wednesday. I studied the Bible and participated in most activities within the church and saw the renewal of life. For the first time in my life, I felt peace and love. I was needed, and I felt God truly loved me.

So I approached the pastor of this church at the time and asked him how do I go about studying to be a minister. This pastor said that he would teach me and guide me in the steps to becoming a pastor. I began my training for the first year and a half and enjoyed every minute of it.

Then one day, (I won’t go into details of what happened within the ministry of this church because I don’t think this pastor realized the damage he was causing), specific actions that were unacceptable as a Christian were going on within this church, and I left the church.

Struggles and Renewal on my Journey to Online Training and Ordination

After leaving the church, I felt empty. I strayed from God, became rebellious, arrogant, self-serving, and a worshiper of money. Sadly, it cost me everything. It cost me, my friends, my family, my self-respect, and at some point, my dignity. It caused me to suffer once again with severe depression, where I wanted to end my life.

In 2003, I was alone and lost everything. Then, I met this woman named Christina Shields, who is the sister of my best friend. We spent many hours talking and praying together. We’ve been friends for 17 years now. She is my confidant and someone I can lean on in times of need. She is an amazing Spiritual Mentor and Life Coach. When I told her three and a half years ago, I had a strong desire to continue my ministry training and preach the word of God to whoever can listen. She backed me 100%.

My Beliefs and My Ministry

That brings us to today. My faith in our heavenly Father has only grown stronger. My belief that Jesus Christ died for our sins has never been stronger. Everyone has the right to come to the Father regardless of their lot in life, irrespective of their past sins. I think that all things are for God to judge, not me. No one has a right to deny anybody the love of our Father.

Two years ago, I created an online church, where people who did not want to go to a church can read and see daily devotionals, sermons, etc. (though sermons have halted because of the pandemic). A global place where everyone can come and everyone is welcome. This online church averages almost 3000 visitors a month. We’ve had visitors from Vietnam, Pakistan, India, Latin America, Indonesia, throughout Europe, but our biggest supporters come from Canada and the United States. We indeed are a global church. All of this happened with zero advertising and a strong faith that God is directing our steps. I ask for no donations.

Free Online Training at CLI and Ordination with CLA

We welcome everyone who is a follower of Jesus Christ. In Canada, we are seeking non-profit status, so we can accept donations, where donations can go to local causes and global causes. Also, once we get non-profit status here in Canada, we know that we will need a brick-and-mortar building. Therefore, this deacon ministry ordination will help us significantly here in Canada to achieve these goals and to bring more people to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

In closing, I want to thank the Christian Leaders Institute for giving me the privilege to study the word of God to get a meaningful, credible ministry education. The deacon minister ordination is a testament to the hard work and dedication I’ve put into my training to be the best conveyor of the word of God I can be.

Learn more about ordination at the Christian Leaders Alliance. Interested in a low-cost degree? Check out the Christian Leaders College.