A degree in ministerial leadership prepares students for enriching, full-time careers in ministry, education and nonprofit leadership. Here are four jobs that ministerial leadership graduates can pursue.


Pastors provide spiritual leadership to the church and help oversee its ministries. Specific duties can include:

  • Preparing and delivering sermons
  • Leading evangelism programs and ministries within the church
  • Performing wedding ceremonies, conducting funerals and meeting with people in need of spiritual guidance
  • Working with and guiding other church staff
  • Providing accountability and guidance for the church to meet its goals

Responsibilities vary based on the size of the church and the pastor’s seniority. Those in clergy positions earn an average annual salary of $44,250, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Youth Minister/Leader

Youth ministers organize worship, education, volunteer opportunities and community outreach activities with children and teens within a church congregation. Typically, they work with grades six through 12. As it’s very common for roles to vary from church to church, youth ministers should expect to be called to serve within other programs and activities put on by the church.

Churches, schools and nonprofit religious organizations employ youth ministers. In very small congregations, youth ministers provide services on a volunteer basis. Sometimes, especially in rural areas, youth ministers may travel to other communities to assist with youth needs that aren’t being met. The BLS reports that those in directorial roles for religious activities and education (including youth ministers) earn a median annual wage of $38,780.

Director of Discipleship

Staff members working in the role of director of discipleship are responsible for encouraging the spiritual growth of people in the church. This is accomplished by providing leadership, outreach and educational services to ministries that reach children, youth and adults. The director may lead classes, recruit and train volunteers, work in a public relations capacity and look for other opportunities to help the church with outreach.

Medium and large churches often employ a staff member as their director of discipleship. Some smaller churches may not have this role; a pastor or other director may assume these responsibilities. Those in directorial roles for religious activities and education earn a median annual wage of $38,780, according to the BLS.

Church Administrator

Church administrators are a link between pastors, the church staff and the congregation. They treat the church like a business in order to remain effective and organized. Here are a few specific roles of a church administrator:

  • Pastor’s gatekeeper and confidant
  • Spokesperson and representative
  • Fiscal and financial protector
  • Risk and liability auditor
  • Hiring manager

Church administrators work at the office within a church. They typically work full time, but smaller congregations may only be able to employ one part time.