Doctorate in Preaching

Program Description

Preaching is offered as a specialization of both the Doctor of Ministry (DMin) and the Doctor of Theological Ministry (DTM). Unlike the DMin, the DTM degree is open to students with a Master of Arts degree.

This new Doctorate is built on Northern Seminary’s New Kind of Preacher (NKP) program, which is funded by the Lilly Foundation. Focusing on the life of the person, rather than the product of the sermon, the NKP program trains seminarians and Pastors holistically. The program focuses on five core aspects of the Preacher’s life: worship leader, proclaimer, collaborator, community builder, and missionary.

Preachers today must adapt to rapidly changing cultures and congregations. The earliest sermons were preached extemporaneously to audiences throughout the ancient world. This Doctorate in preaching will combine the best of ancient and modern practices to challenge preachers to adapt their messages each week to the needs of their audiences. Drawing on the resources of ancient rhetoric, jazz, and ancient and modern media, we will study, learn, and grow together as leaders of congregations. Preachers will leave with a publishable thesis that will contribute to this ancient and new way of delivering sermons and will prepare the preacher for a life of ministry in any context.

The Preaching Doctorate is designed for preachers who are seeking to

  • Engage their congregation as active participants in worship and discipleship
  • Integrating the preaching life into their lives of ministry through pain, endurance, and prophetic witness
  • Commission congregants to engage their cultures
  • Develop improvisational skills that can be used in public settings
  • Understand and serve their local contexts
  • Become ambassadors of reconciliation
  • Describe or expand their vision for their local congregation
  • Learn to work as a team in worship planning and evaluation
  • Respond to community and congregational crises effectively
  • Immerse and retell scripture as part of the preacher’s life and ministry
  • Receive ongoing feedback as part of their growth as persons

Students will learn from the following professors:

  • Dr. Gary Hayles, Director of the New Kind of Preacher Program
  • Dr. Bill Shiell, President and Professor of Preaching at Northern Seminary
  • Dr. Scot McKnight, Professor of New Testament at Northern Seminary
  • Dr. “Coach” Wayne Gordon, Pastor of Lawndale Community Church and Co-Founder of the Christian Community Development Association

Program Requirements 


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