LCMS Pastoral Education


LCMS Pastoral Education

Welcome to an exploration of pre-seminary topics, including the need for pastors; identifying, informing and encouraging appropriate candidates for pastoral ministry; and college education prior to seminary enrollment.

The need

The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod needs pastors — now and in the future. Learn the latest assessment of the current need for pastors and the latest projections for the future need of pastors in the Synod.

The LCMS has more than 800 pastoral vacancies, but roughly half of these vacancies are “non-calling vacancies” (congregations not actively seeking a pastor).

The LCMS pastoral vacancy report was submitted by the LCMS Council of Presidents and provides the most-current data.

Pastoral vacancy report


The Lord of the Harvest raises up workers for His harvest, even as His church prays that He would. Explore activities and resources available in the LCMS to assist in the process of identifying, informing and encouraging appropriate candidates for the pastoral ministry.

During the next 10 years, approximately 50 percent of our pastors will be eligible for retirement. Therefore, encouraging men to explore a church vocation is an ongoing activity, vital to the future of the LCMS in carrying out the Great Commission.

Confirmation classes, young adult groups, and other lay activities provide pastors and congregations with an opportunity to identify and encourage men to prayerfully consider serving our Lord in the pastoral ministry.

College education

Since seminary study is graduate-level in nature, an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university is ordinarily required for admission to the residential programs of study (but not for several distance education programs).

Discover the options in undergraduate education available to those considering enrollment in one of the two LCMS seminaries.

Join us on the journey

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