United Methodist Requirements for Ordination

As requirements for United Methodist ordination evolve, MTSO offers options and guidance.

The Master of Divinity degree fulfills United Methodist requirements for ordination as elder or deacon. The MA in Public Theology fulfills United Methodist requirements for deacon.

In January 2023, the University Senate of the United Methodist Church approved a policy change to allow a student seeking United Methodist ordination to earn their Master of Divinity fully online. Previously, a student seeking United Methodist ordination was required to earn at least one-third of their seminary degree through campus-based courses.

(Some annual conferences may still decide to limit the percentage of online courses that their candidates can take as a part of their graduate theological education. Prospective students should consult with their annual conference as they are working through their candidacy process. If your annual conference requires in-person classes, here are options for meeting that requirement.)

MTSO has options for in-person and online study. Visit our HyFlex page for more information.

Let's discuss your options

We will work with you to chart a path that meets ordination requirements and fits your life. To get that conversation started, drop us an email at admissions@mtso.edu.