Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling Discipleship Church Ministry Online Degree Program
Credit Hours
Class Type
Transfer Credits
Transfer in up to 50% of the degree total
Next Start Date
Aug 19, 2024
Liberty University is accredited by SACSCOC

Prepare to Make a Greater Impact in Ministry with a Master’s in Pastoral Counseling and Discipleship

Are you looking for a way to combine your passion for ministry with your love for helping others? Consider a master’s degree in pastoral counseling focused on discipleship and church ministry. This degree provides the training you need to be an effective church planter, discipleship and life group pastor, lay leader, and non-licensed counselor.

Our pastoral counseling courses can help you develop a better understanding of how to reach hurting people. Our core pastoral counseling courses focus on marriage and family counseling and crisis counseling. In addition, our discipleship and church ministry-focused courses explore family discipleship and small group ministry training.

Get excited about impacting your church and community with a master’s degree that prepares you for more. As a non-clinical counseling track, this program provides you with a degree path that can be completed in as little as one year. Imagine walking away with a graduate degree that equips you to better serve your congregation in under 12 months!

Award-Winning Campus

At Liberty, you’ll find an affordable, high-quality education that equips students like you for the real world. Our commitment to excellence helped us rank among’s Top 3 college campuses in America. Earning your degree from a nonprofit university with state-of-the-art resources like ours can help set you apart from your peers.

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Why Choose Liberty’s Pastoral Counseling Master’s Degree in Discipleship and Church Ministry?

Leading others is a big responsibility. Let us equip you to be effective in your ministry with our M.A. in Pastoral Counseling. Pursuing your master’s degree with Liberty means receiving quality academics with biblical integration. All of our pastoral counseling faculty have served for at least 20 years in the counseling field. They are excited about sharing their immense experience with you as you embark on God’s calling for your life.

Additionally, you will have the opportunity to take your education outside the classroom. Our M.A. in Pastoral Counseling students complete a 225-hour internship in an approved, related setting. You will gain invaluable hands-on, face-to-face counseling experience in individual, relationship, and group therapy. Not only that, but you will also have our faculty by your side, monitoring your completed assignments and ready to provide any assistance you may need.

What Will You Learn in Our Pastoral Counseling Master’s Degree?

Our graduate students studying pastoral counseling explore the multicultural, family, and spiritual issues most often faced in a pastoral setting. As a student in this program, you will receive training in solution-based models so you can apply various behavioral approaches and appropriate biblical teaching in your work. You will also examine the best ways to promote spiritual growth during crises, as well as in premarital and marriage circumstances.

By specializing in discipleship and ministry, you will thoroughly study an important component of pastoral counseling: leading others. You will learn how to train family leaders to responsibly lead and implement healthy discipleship. This includes training them in creating family devotions and vital teaching moments.

Additionally, our discipleship and ministry-focused degree will cover topics like church planting and early church history and formation. These courses will help you lead small group ministries and understand church administration processes.

View the Degree Completion Plan, and check out our featured courses below to learn more about what you’ll be studying!

Featured Courses

DSMN 610 – Family Discipleship

DSMN 660 – Leading the Healthy, Growing, Multiplying Church

PACO 500 – Introduction to Pastoral Counseling

PACO 617 – Theories and Techniques in Pastoral Counseling

Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • This course introduces students to selected theories of counseling and psychotherapy.
  • It involves an intensive counseling experience designed to enhance self-awareness, promote personality exploration, and provide case discussion and analysis.
  • Fundamentals of the therapeutic relationship and essential skills are examined.


Degree Information
Admission Requirements

Highlights of Our Master’s in Pastoral Counseling Degree

  • Complete your entire master’s in as little as 1 year!
  • Experience opportunities to earn several certificates from the American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC). These include Crisis Response, Life Coaching, and Saving Your Marriage Before It Starts (SYMBIS).
  • Our AACC student chapter provides the chance for students like you to grow professionally and spiritually as you network and interact with successful counseling professionals.
  • Our student to professor ratio for residential graduate students is 6:1.
  • Our faculty care deeply for their students, praying for and with them throughout their academic journey.

Pastoral Counseling – Discipleship and Church Ministry Degree Information

Career Opportunities for Discipleship and Ministry Pastoral Counseling Graduates

  • Associate pastor
  • Chaplain
  • Church counselor
  • Lay leader
  • Non-licensed counselor
  • Teaching pastor
  • Youth pastor

Admission Requirements for Graduate Degrees

Every application is reviewed on a case-by-case basis, and all applicants must submit the following documents and meet the minimum requirements for admission:

  • Admission application
  • Official bachelor’s degree transcripts with a 2.0 GPA or higher
  • Self-certification form (for students who are in the final term of their bachelor’s degree)
  • Current Liberty undergraduate students seeking preliminary acceptance into a graduate program must complete a degree completion application through their ASIST account