N.C.C.A. Licensure | Policies & ProceduresNational Christian Counselors Association Certified Academic Institution | 1 (888) 761-5777, Ext 3
N.C.C.A. Licensure Requires Ministerial Credentials:
Soul Care Ministries International, Inc (SCMi™) does not require ministerial credentials for initial enrollment in the N.C.C.A. License and Degrees Program. However, students who enroll in any N.C.C.A. License & Degrees Program will be required to hold or obtain clergy credentials prior to the completion of Phase II of their training. The N.C.C.A. requires all who are certified and licensed by its Licensing Board of Examiners to:
- Be credentialed ministers (ordained, licensed, or commissioned) whose goal is to evangelize and ease the emotional pain and suffering of humanity.
- Provide their service under the authority of a legally organized local church, a national religious organization, or a nonprofit Christian organization.
Obtaining clergy credentials is the sole responsibility of the student and is not a part of the Soul Care Ministries Institute curriculum. If you are not already a clergy person, we recommend that you first discuss your call to ministry with your local pastor. If needed, we can assist you in obtaining credentials that meet the N.C.C.A. program requirements.
The purpose of the ministerial credentials is:
- To establish recognition of those called to specific ministries of the Christian faith thereby making available a qualification process by which leadership may recognize and endorse such person.
- To provide an accountability process measured by defined ethical and religious standards. To accomplish this; a person who is called to ministry may make application to their local church or to a nationally recognized church for specific recognition.
- To facilitate the on-going endorsement and commendation of the minister by the Presbytery (officiate clergy) of the church. After initial recognition is given, a relationship is established between the minister and the church (i.e. membership, requiring regular and informative reporting of professional and spiritual activities of the minister to the church leadership).
Ministerial Credentials Options:
There are two primary options for receiving valid ministerial credentials: (1) your local church, or (2) independent credentials from a nationally recognized church. Either must be a registered 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.
Local Church Clergy Credentials:
If the student is planning on developing or enhancing an outreach ministry of Christian counseling under the auspices of their local church, the local church leadership must ordain, license, or commission the individual as a Minister of the Gospel (five-fold ministry), Minister of Christian Counseling, or Minister of Pastoral Counseling. Requirements for each category of clergy credential may vary based on the church or denominational requirements.
As a student goes through our N.C.C.A. Licensing & Degrees Program, they should simultaneously be working with their local church leadership on securing proper ministerial (clergy) credentials. In order for these clergy credentials to be considered valid by state and court officials, the student must work with local church leadership to establish the outreach ministry under the auspices of the local church, with board oversight, procedures, and proper accountability.
Independent Clergy Credentials:
If your goal is to start or serve in an independent Christian counseling ministry or center (a/k/a para-church or outreach ministry) within the community, not sponsored by a local church, we suggest you secure valid ministerial credentials through a legally recognized national church. Securing appropriate ministerial credentials will require the student to follow the national church’s policies and procedures in securing the ministerial credentials at or up to the level of the services you will be providing.
Establishing a para-church or outreach ministry of Christian counseling in the community requires careful planning and implementation. In the case of establishing the ministry under the auspices of a nationally recognized church who has conferred an individual’s ministerial credentials, you must establish the right relationship. The relation will either be by separately incorporating your tax exempt ministry in your state, with your own board of directors and affiliating with the national church, or establishing the ministry as a direct outreach ministry of the national church or faith-based nonprofit organization, under their tax exempt organization status. You may do either.
Learn More or Contact Us:
We encourage you to read this article if you would like to learn more. If you are a student of the SCMi Institute, and have questions about clergy credentials, please contact us.
Let’s discuss your options regarding valid credentials. If needed, we can provided you with contact information for several of our ministry partners. These sources, of independent nationally recognized ministerial credentials, have as one of their primary missions the goal to oversee independent Christian ministries. Your call to the ministry of counseling must be demonstrated and these ministerial credentials must be earned. You will be guided through all of the necessary paperwork for the clergy credentials, recommended courses of training, and field practicum/project (if any) to achieve the clergy qualification and credentials.
Together we can explore affiliating your independent counseling practice with Soul Care Ministries International, Inc. or possibly chartering your ministry organization directly under the auspices one of the N.C.C.A. partner ministries. You may contact Dr. Linda King. with any questions.