Ministerial Credentials Explained
Gaining Ministerial Credentials
- Contact your District Council.
Applications for Assemblies of God ministerial credentials are made through the District Councils. You should contact the district council office for your area for information on how to apply for credentials with that district. You can find contact information for our District Council offices by using the Assemblies of God Church Directory.
- Meet the Qualifications for Ministry
Read The General Council of the Assemblies of God Constitution and Bylaws, which contains a section about qualifications for ministry in the A/G. Or see the “basic qualifications
- Salvation: Testimony of having experienced the new birth (John 3:5).
- Baptism in The Holy Spirit: Testimony of having received the baptism in the Holy Spirit with the initial physical evidence of speaking in other tongues according to Acts 2:4. The Spirit-filled life will enable a minister to fulfill the threefold mission of the church (Article V, paragraph 10, of the Constitution).
- Evidence of Call: Clear evidence of a divine call to the ministry, evidenced by a personal conviction, confirmed by the work of the Spirit and the testimony of fellow ministers.
- Christian Character: A blameless Christian life and a good report of those who are without (Titus 1:7; 1 Timothy 3:7).
- Doctrinal Position: A thorough understanding of and agreement with our doctrinal position as contained in the Statement of Fundamental Truths.
- Assemblies of God Polity: A satisfactory working knowledge of the principles, practices, and purposes of the Fellowship through a study of the General Council and District Council Constitution and Bylaws.
- Commitment to The Fellowship: An active loyalty to our constitutional agreements, a cooperative spirit, and a readiness to seek and receive the counsel of older mature Christians and those in positions of authority.
- Basic Education Requirements: Any level of formal academic achievement (diploma or degree) shall not be a requirement for credentials; however, credential applicants shall meet the following criteria. All applicants are required to be interviewed by the District Credentials Committee and, in preparation for the interview, pass a standard exam approved by the General Presbytery whereby they demonstrate knowledge of the Bible, Assemblies of God doctrines, and ministerial practices; and either:
- Successfully complete equivalent training to that indicated on the educational requirements page, preferably, in an endorsed Assemblies of God postsecondary school; or in a seminary, college, Bible college, or school approved by the District Credentials Committee consistent with the criteria established by the General Council Credentials Committee; or ….
- Successfully complete courses, prescribed by the General Presbytery offered in correspondence through Global University of the Assemblies of God; or pass the final examination in the prescribed courses (This is what Pathway Provides); or ….
- Be recommended by a District Credentials Committee as qualifying for credentials through self-study and ministerial experience. Such candidates shall have a proven and fruitful ministry of substantial duration. Requests from a district for such a candidate shall be presented to the General Council Credentials Committee and may be granted on a case-by-case basis.
- Marriage status: We disapprove of any married persons holding ministerial credentials with the Assemblies of God if either marriage partner has a former spouse living, unless the divorce occurred prior to his or her conversion or for the scriptural causes of a former spouse’s marital unfaithfulness (Matthew 19:9), or the abandonment of the believer by the unbeliever (1 Corinthians 7:10-15), except as stated below.
- Ecclesiastical annulments and marriage dissolutions: The Executive Presbytery shall have the authority to determine whether an applicant qualifies for an ecclesiastical annulment. In such cases there must be clear and satisfactory evidence of deception, fraud, or other conditions which have a profound impact preventing the creation of a valid marriage union, unknown at the time of marriage by the applicant. The Executive Presbytery shall have the authority to determine whether an applicant qualifies regarding a former marriage when the termination of that marriage is consistent with the scriptural position of the Fellowship relating to the granting or holding of ministerial credentials; or if a former marriage ended prior to conversion. In those cases involving pre-conversion divorce they shall be decided on an individual basis just as those that deal with ecclesiastical annulments. Appeals from the decisions of the Executive Presbytery may be made to the General Presbytery. All inquiries must be directed to the office of the District Superintendent, by calling (916) 379-9600 x1136, prior to applying for an Assemblies of God credential.
- Eligibility of women: The Scriptures plainly teach that divinely called and qualified women may also serve the church in the ministry of the Word (Joel 2:29; Acts 21:9; 1 Corinthians 11:5). Women who meet the qualifications for ministerial credentials are eligible for whatever grade of credentials their qualifications warrant and have the right to administer the ordinances of the church and are eligible to serve in all levels of church ministry, and/or district and General Council leadership.
- Ministers from Other Organizations: If a minister from another reputable body desires to affiliate with the Assemblies of God, the Credentials Committees of both the General Council and the District Council are under no obligation to accept the applicant’s previous ministerial status, but will judge each candidate on his or her own merits in light of the Assemblies of God criteria. It is expected that ministers who receive Assemblies of God recognition will relinquish their ministerial credentials with all other organizations.