What on earth is PennDel School of Ministry?
The PennDel School of Ministry is a convenient, fast-track, less expensive way that a person can satisfy the academic requirements for credentials with the Assemblies of God.
What about laymen? Can they take PennDel SOM courses?
Yes! In fact, in the future we hope to offer a diploma for Lay Church Workers. It certainly would make them more valuable teacher/leaders in the local church.
How will PennDel SOM work?
You may enroll online, using your credit card for payment. Then, you will order your textbook from the source of your choice. You will have approximately one month to read the text and complete the Study Guide. You will then attend a one-day class, pass your exam, and you will have completed that course toward the requirements for your credentials.
Does this meet with General Council’s approval?
Yes! Thirty three districts make up the National D-SOM Organization. They act as an accrediting association in accordance with General Council policies. National DSOM has the explicit approval of the Executive Presbytery in Springfield.
I have already completed some courses from another Bible training program; can they be applied toward these courses?
You can submit a transcript from the other Bible school and your case will be studied on its own individual merit. Berean College courses will always be accepted, provided your grade was passing.
I already have credentials. Will courses be available so that I can work toward advancement?
Yes, three courses will eventually be offered simultaneously; one for Certified Minister, one for Licensed, and one for Ordained. You may enroll in whichever one meets your need.
Do I have to take the courses in the order in which they are offered?
No, courses can be taken at any time they are offered. You can even jump into the cycle in mid-stream, if you miss the first enrollment. However, the courses have been arranged logically in the best order to be taken. Example: The very first course is Hermeneutics, the art of proper scripture interpretation. We feel that a student should know how to “rightly divide the Word of truth” before diving into an intense study of it.
Where will the classes be offered?
Presently courses will be offered at Monroeville Assembly of God, Central Assembly of God in Bethlehem and Christian Life Assembly of God in Camp Hill.
When will the courses be offered?
The Bethlehem campus classes meet on the FIRST Saturday of each month (Sept-June)
The Monroeville campus classes meet on the SECOND Saturday of each month (Sept- June).
The Camp Hill campus classes meet on the THIRD Saturday of each month (Sept- June) .
Every effort will be made to adhere to this schedule. However, serious calendar conflicts may occasionally require adjusting this schedule. Advance notice will be given whenever this is necessary.
When will the classes start?
The school year will roughly follow the traditional school system. We will start in September, and go through June of each year. Classes will not be held during December and the summer.
What courses will be offered and when?
A complete list of courses and the dates they are being offered is available at our website, on the application blank, and from the district office.
What will be the schedule for the day of the class?
You will arrive at 8:30 for check-in at the site. You will turn in your completed SG at check-in and go directly to class. The first order of business will be the grading of the SG’s, a brief discussion of your answers, and a review of the material you have studied. After a short break, you will take your final exam for the course and break for lunch. After lunch the exams will be randomly distributed and you will grade someone else’s exam. The rest of the day (until 5:00) will be spent in practical applications of the material you have learned. This will be a totally different learning experience from the typical classroom. The emphasis will not be on content delivery from teacher to student, but on practical application of the material you have learned.
How much will each course cost?
One time registration fee is $75. Enrollment for each course is $60. The student is also responsible for the purchase of his/her own textbook, travel, and meals. The student may order books from any online source (amazon.com, christianbook.com, gospelpublishing.com, half.com) or from a local bookstore. PennDel SOM will not provide books.
Will I automatically receive my credentials at the conclusion of the series of courses?
No, PennDel SOM is not a credential-granting organization. You will still need to go through the credential application/approval process through the District. PennDel SOM only provides the academic requirements for your credentials. However, our schedule is such that if you stay with our schedule you will be ready for the credential application deadline.
Is the cost of my courses tax deductible?
Not as a contribution. However, you may be eligible for a deduction, consult with your tax adviser for more information.
How is PennDel SOM any better than a self-study approach?
For many, the self-study route may still be the best way to go. However, that route has several shortcomings that PennDel SOM does not have.
We will provide the accountability that keeps you on task, moving toward your goal of obtaining credentials, we will provide a classroom environment that promotes exchange of ideas, beneficial dialogue and exposure to differing perspectives on the subject matter, you will be building relationships with your fellow students that you could not get with self-study programs, and you will sit under the teaching of experienced teachers who have been “in the trenches.” These four benefits are available, of course, in a normal Bible college setting; and we still believe that is the best way to go. However, we realize that this is not possible for everyone; therefore the need for PDSOM.
What about the quality of the instructors?
We have attempted to screen our instructors very carefully. Most (but not all) of them have academic degrees that uniquely qualify them to teach the subjects they have been assigned. In some cases, their practical experience or significant success in a given field has given them the authority to speak to their assigned subject. Even so, with over 50 people on our faculty, not every one of them will always hit a home run. Students will be given an evaluation form for every faculty member in every class. This will help us to make changes if, and when they are necessary.
Do I have to have a computer, e-mail, and Internet access?
Although it is not absolutely necessary, internet access will be required for email communication. Most of our forms, SG’s, and other material will all be available for download from our website. We try to keep our costs minimal and avoid postage and handling by not having to mail anything. We do communicate with our students by e-mail; so, an e-mail account is necessary to receive our updates.
Who is my contact person?
In the application stage, your primary contact will be Bob Lecocq (Dean). To view contact information, please visit the contact page.