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The School of Religion has introduced two minors — Biblical Studies and Church Ministries — to its curriculum this year, offering greater opportunities for biblical insight and practical knowledge to undergraduate students in all disciplines.
The minor in Biblical Studies examines the tools and methods used for biblical interpretation, providing students with a solid foundation for studying the biblical text, and includes a variety of courses focusing on the Old Testament and New Testament books of the Bible. The minor requires students to take 12 credit hours of Bible electives and three credit hours of Biblical Backgrounds, which includes Biblical Archeology (BIBL 471), Old Testament Background (BIBL 473) and New Testament Background (BIBL 472).
The Church Ministries minor offers courses on a range of church-related topics and ministries and provides ideal training for students who are devoted to building the Kingdom of God. Required courses will cover youth work, basic church ministries and practical leadership skills.
The Church Ministries minor requires students to take Introduction to Church Ministries (CHMN 201), Survey of Youth Ministries (YOUT 201) and Organization and Administration of the Local Church (PLED 450), as well as six credit hours from the Youth Ministries, Children’s Ministries, Church Ministries or Pastoral Leadership specializations.
Although the Biblical Studies minor is also offered residentially, the minor in Church Ministries is unique to Liberty University Online.
Dr. Gabe Etzel, associate dean of Undergraduate Religion for LU Online, is enthused about the new programs, especially Church Ministries because it is unique to online, and he believes it will draw students from other majors.
“I think it’s exciting to think of education majors and business majors and nursing majors and psychology majors” all participating in the program, Etzel said. “We were encouraged by the success of the Christian Counseling and the Biblical Counseling courses [launched] a year ago … which now have close to a thousand students,” Etzel said.
The School of Religion offers an Associate of Arts in Religion and a Bachelor of Science in Religion through Liberty University Online, as well as five residential programs.