Seminaries are a gift to the Church in many ways, but so much of what pastors, missionaries, and ministry leaders need to know about serving the church cannot be learned in a classroom. We believe the education of future pastors requires real church experience.

Our residency program seeks to expose future pastors and leaders to the typical ebb and flow of local church ministry and to equip them with a pastoral, ecclesiological grid for the care for the people of God. What qualifications are necessary to be an elder? What’s the job description of a pastor? Is church membership both biblical and necessary? How does one build a culture of discipleship in the local church? God’s Word is not silent on these matters. Residents read significant works on these issues, discuss them in weekly meetings, watch as these principles are put into practice at Church on Mill, and are given hands-on experience.

Our aim is not to equip you to replicate Church on Mill.Instead, we want to give you a theological grasp on all the Bible has to say about the local church along with an accessible philosophy of ministry from which you will have the tools needed to plant, revitalize, or support ministry in another local church.

Residency Structure and Work

Space in the residency depends upon available housing, which is often impacted by whether or not applicants are single or married. Please let us know your marital status and housing needs when you apply.

A good portion of the residency experience is reading and reflecting on theological issues important to healthy ministry. Additional responsibilities include writing and presenting multiple papers, being mentored by an experienced pastoral leader, and engaging in hands-on ministry experience in particular areas of church life. Expect to be exposed to a wide range of ministry activities and situations, in addition to fulfilling all the normal duties of meaningful church membership.

Residency Reading List

In addition to regular interaction with the Bible, residents read at least the following over the course of a one-year residency (whether residents are doing the residency for Phoenix Seminary credit, which draws from many of the same materials, or not):

  • Beale, G.K. and D.A. Carson, eds. Commentary on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament
  • Bennett, Arthur. The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions
  • Carson, D.A., ed. Worship by the Book
  • Chapell, Bryan. Christ-Centered Preaching: Redeeming the Expository Sermon
  • Chapell, Bryan. Christ-Centered Worship
  • Chester, Tim. You Can Change
  • Croft, Brian and Phil Newton. Conduct Gospel-Centered Funerals
  • Dever, Mark and Jonathan Leeman. Baptist Foundations: Church Government for an Anti-Institutional Age
  • Dever, Mark. The Church: The Gospel Made Visible
  • Dever, Mark. What is a Healthy Church?
  • DeYoung, Kevin and Greg Gilbert. What is the Mission of the Church? Making Sense of Social Justice, Shalom, and the Great Commission
  • DeYoung, Kevin. Taking God at His Word
  • Gilbert, Greg. What is the Gospel?
  • Goldsworthy, Graeme. According to Plan: The Unfolding Revelation of God in the Bible
  • Hammet, John S. and Benjamin L. Merkle. Those Who Must Give an Account
  • Helm, David. Expositional Preaching: How We Speak God’s Word Today
  • Helm, David. One to One Bible Reading
  • Keller, Timothy. Center Church: Doing Balanced, Gospel-Centered Ministry in Your City
  • Keller, Timothy. Preaching: Communicating Faith in an Age of Skepticism
  • Keller, Timothy. The Meaning of Marriage
  • Laniak, Tim. Shepherds After My Own Heart
  • Long, Thomas G. Preaching and the Literary Forms of the Bible
  • Ortlund, Ray. The Gospel: How the Church Portrays the Beauty of Christ
  • Packer, J.I. Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God
  • Rinne, Jeramie. Church Elders: How to Shepherd God’s People Like Jesus
  • Robinson, Haddon W., Biblical Preaching: The Development and Delivery of Expository Messages
  • Sande, Ken. Resolving Everyday Conflict
  • Stott, John. The Cross of Christ
  • Strauch, Alexander. Biblical Eldership
  • Tripp, Paul David. Dangerous Calling
  • Tripp, Paul David. Instruments in the Redeemer’s Hands
  • VanDrunen, David. Living in God’s Two Kingdoms: A Biblical Vision for Christianity and Culture
  • Via, Dan O. and Robert A.J. Gagnon. Homosexuality and the Bible: Two Views

Who Is Eligible?

We welcome applications from men and women who are aiming at pastoral, missionary, or general ministry leadership and who are able to affirm Church on Mill’s doctrinal statement and become members of the church.

Are Residents Compensated?

Residents commit to one year of serving in a 20 hour per week to full-time capacity as members of the Church on Mill staff. Residency provides an opportunity to grow in a specific calling to vocational ministry and more advanced mentoring. Residents grow theologically, in character, and in ministry competencies through a careful blend of reading, reflection, observation, mentoring, and ministry experience. Residents are compensated with free housing on the church campus, all utilities, and study materials. Most residents raise support, get a local part-time job, or simply use existing savings to cover personal expenses.

Is This Residency for You?

If you are looking for an easy opportunity for career advancement in a perfect church, this is not the program for you. Church on Mill is a work in progress and we expect strong work from residents. If, however, you are looking for a church seeking to bathe all of church life in the Bible and expose residents to the complexities of ministry in the real world, we’d love for you to apply. Please submit an application as early as possible. Spots are limited. We look forward to hearing from you.

Submit an Application

Want Seminary Credit?

One of the unique opportunities of a residency at Church on Mill is the availability to earn 18 hours of seminary credit over the course of two semesters. Residents with a qualified undergraduate degree who apply to Phoenix Seminary will be able to knock out an entire year’s worth of seminary classes. Here are a few specifics:

  1. Students/Interns can take as much as 18 hours! The fall semester offers 9 hours and the spring 9 hours (two six hour classes and two three hour classes). Note that this is full-time master’s level credit equivalent to an entire year of seminary without having to go to the seminary campus or leave the local church. Here are the syllabi for the classes: MA501 | MA 502 | MA 503 | MA 504. Please note that 12 of the 18 hours replace core credit, while the other 6 are elective hours in each degree program.
  2. Students with strong academic standing will be given a 50% discount in tuition. As long as the student maintains a 3.0 grade point average, all classes taken in the MAA and throughout the entire degree on campus will be given this discount. This is huge!
  3. You can apply to Phoenix Seminary today here and also to be a resident at Church on Mill here.