Samford MTI offers online certificates in church planting, disciple making

The Samford University Ministry Training Institute (MTI) has new online certificates in church planting and disciple making designed to help pastors, staff members and lay people further develop their leadership skills in these areas.

“These new certificate offerings are designed to provide affordable and accessible high-quality training opportunities for church leaders,” said MTI director Kevin Blackwell.

The Certificate in Church Planting is designed and taught by Lamar Duke, lead church planting strategist for the Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions (SBOM). 

“The need for church planting is prevalent anywhere there are lost people. In other words, everywhere,” Duke said. “We are seeking to impact students with principles for church planting that are transferrable to any new ministry start-up.”

The Certificate in Disciple Making was birthed out of several disciple-making events offered by Daniel Edmonds, SBOM director of the office of Sunday School and discipleship, that highlighted the desire in Alabama Baptist churches for a disciple-making movement. Robert Mullins, pastor of Crossroads Community Church (formerly Mount Hebron Baptist), in Elmore, will lead the disciple making certificate program. The focus of the program is to lead Christians to be disciples who make disciples, Blackwell said. 

“It is my utmost prayer that God uses this certificate to equip church leaders and lay people to spark multiplying movements of gospel explosion in their communities,” Blackwell said.

The Certificate in Church Planting and Certificate in Disciple Making, along with the Certificate in Pastoral Leadership and the Certificate in Worship Leadership, all offer the flexibility of online classes combined with expert teaching, theological framework and practical knowledge in the subject areas, Blackwell said. 

Each online certificate program requires completion of four courses. The courses do not have to be taken in sequence, however. Registration is available for individual courses as well as for the full program in each subject.

Registration is now open for the 2018 Fall B session, which runs Oct. 23–Dec. 17. 

In addition to the online offerings, many courses are offered in face-to-face classes throughout the state.

For more information on MTI programs or to register online, go to or call the MTI office at 205-726-4055. (TAB)