Master of Arts

Missional Leadership

Trinity's M.A. Missional Leadership is designed to equip the student with both a theological and practical framework for leadership and ministry in a complex cultural context through leadership development, organizational development and strategic planning. Critical evaluation of ethical issues in contemporary society rounds out a program that equips the student to navigate the demands of a globalized world while maintaining a relevant demonstration of the mission of Christ.
* The program can be completed entirely online.

The theological emphasis of the Master of Arts Missional Leadership is intended to prepare leaders to live out the relevance of the Christian faith as experienced in a committed faith community.

A ministry-specific research track enables the students to investigate their ministry context critically and propose future options for it. Successful completion of this accredited degree equips a student to progress to doctoral studies at most credible academic institutions.

Class 10-01
Untitled design (6)

Program Objectives

Upon completing the M.A. Missional Leadership program, students should be able to:

Program Structure

Course Structure

The M.A. Missional Leadership is a 48-credit program and you can complete in as little as two years.

There are thirteen courses of three credits each and a thesis of nine credits.

Year One: Complete seven courses either over four residential sessions* or online.

Year Two: Complete five courses over four residential sessions or online while beginning work on the thesis. Students who anticipate completing the thesis during the second year can apply to participate in Graduation Ceremonies.

Access to the Internet is required for participation in the program.

Program Distinctives

The M.A. Missional Leadership program with Trinity has several unique features that set it apart from the many programs nationwide.

1. Quality education that engages with the context, reflects on theology and rethinks paradigms of leadership.

2. Rigorous courses offered in 4 one-week sessions per year.

3. Convenient, economical and innovative program that accommodates people with a busy schedule.

4. Emphasis on spiritual formation and personal development.

5. Highly qualified and experienced faculty.

6. Enhanced library services with capability to access theological databases from your home.

Typical Students

The M.A. Missional Leadership students showcase leadership abilities and are looking to utilize their skills in ministry.

Many are full-time pastors, bi-vocational pastors or non-ordained staff seeking to increase their ministry effectiveness in the church, workplace or other vocations.

*The Residential Sessions of the M.A. Missional Leadership at Trinity are four sessions of four days each per year. Typically they will begin on a Monday evening with a shared supper and a forum. The program will run full day Tuesday – Thursday and finish by lunch time on Friday. The dates for the sessions are scheduled at least two years in advance for your long-term planning.

Need more flexibility? Students can utilize an additional six months for the completion of their thesis and a total of 6 years to complete the entire program. If a student takes longer than 6 years to complete their major, they will need to reapply to the program.


Online Term Dates

May 1 - August 18, 2023
August 21 - December 9, 2023
January 8 - April 26, 2024

On Campus Session Dates
(not applicable for all-online students)

August 21-24, 2023
November 13-17, 2023
August 21-24, 2023
November 13-17, 2023
February 19-23, 2024
April 22-26, 2024


PT510 Research Methods: Perspectives and Resources: 3 credits

Foundational to post-graduate level study is the need to understand and become familiar with research methodology. This course is intentionally designed to prepare the student for careful, investigative research resulting in appropriate writing styles, adequate referencing and critical analysis. Analyzing, evaluating, building and presenting arguments are central to the course. Developing a familiarity with different research methodologies, data analysis and the preparation of literature reviews prepare the student to maximize the whole course but, in particular, to be prepared for the research track which comprises their own unique project.

PT610 Ethical Foundations for Christian Leadership: 3 credits

In an increasingly complex environment, leaders need ethical and theological awareness in order to sustain moral and principle-centered organizations. This course familiarizes the students with ethical concepts thus facilitating theological reflection and practical action in the light of the Church’s moral mission in society.

PT620 Contemporary Preaching / Communication: 3 credits

Recognizing the shift in culture and the impact of technology, this course is designed to introduce the student to the context in which preaching (which includes contextual communication) now takes place. Beginning with an affirmation of the role of preaching in the Church, the course examines cultural shift, the impacts of literary and historical deconstruction and models for communicating the timeless message of Christ in the 21st Century. Options for further research that include the use of technology in preaching, preaching in a pluralist context and exploring alternative models of church will enhance the value of this course. The student will be better able to assess the needs of his or her listeners, engage the art of storytelling and generally be better equipped to serve the contemporary church.

LD510 Contextualizing Leadership: 3 credits

Astute leaders must be able to identify and engage the context in which they live. Investigating transitions in leadership styles over the past seven decades and then applying them to a rapidly changing cultural context are valuable tools for contemporary leaders. This course will provide the analytical skills required to take organizations or ministries to a preferred future. Managing transition and conflict are key components within this course thus preparing the student with practical skills for leading in complicated and often multi-generational contexts.

LD520 Organizational Development and Strategic Planning: 3 credits

Established organizational development strategies do not always translate directly into building missional organizations. The interface between effective strategic planning and its application within a missional context is carefully examined within this course. The student is enabled to establish values, mission and vision and then apply them in a consistent and strategic way. Students will explore how to manage change, cope with resistance and develop viable and sustainable missional organizations.

LD530 Contemporary Models of Missional Leadership: 3 credits

Building on previous course work, this course seeks to allow the student to evaluate a variety of models for leadership. With an eye on sustainability and viability, the student is encouraged to explore different models, identify such models currently in practice and to be able to motivate appropriate principles for his or her own leadership context.

LD610 Global Scholar Seminar: 3 credits

Each year a leading global scholar will be invited to teach Leadership in a Global Context from the unique perspective of his or her area of expertise. The title of the course will be determined by the content of the syllabus. Building on the factual realities of globalization, this course is designed to develop competencies in developing a biblical world view that responds in a Christ-honoring way to the complex issues of religious, ideological, and cultural diversity that now define the context of twenty first century church. Understanding contemporary phenomena such as mass migration, pluralism, gender issues, and ethnic diversity are foundational to effectively leading churches and ministries that are clearly counter-cultural communities of faith. The intentional inclusiveness of Christ-following people and demonstrating an understanding in leading redemptive communities forms the theological foundation of this course.

LD620 Generational Succession: 3 credits

This course addresses a largely ignored and under-described aspect of leadership. Of particular relevance to leaders in Western cultural contexts, this course explores the role of mentoring, transformational leadership and, importantly, the diverse roles for both older and younger leaders. Missional communities do not devalue experience nor do they condone generationally bound communities. The student will learn to accommodate and celebrate a multi-generational approach to leadership.

CS510 An Introduction to Mission and Culture: 3 credits

Although introductory, this course is designed to engage the student in becoming familiar with the growing genre of material available in contemporary mission studies. Identifying the components of culture, the course provides the student with the tools to identify cultural forms and norms without imposing a Christianized worldview on lifestyles and practices that are different to their own. The transformational impact of the Gospel in the lives of individuals and communities is examined in the light of a biblically based theology that takes the missional call of the Church seriously.

CS520 Missionary Movements in Review: Lessons for Contemporary Mission (elective): 3 credits

Adopting the historical method of identifying key events from the past, this course will undertake a history of mission through the lens of missionary movements. An overview of movements that can be clearly identified as missionary due to their evangelistic and outward focus will lay the foundation for the course. In turn this will allow for a critical examination of what defines a missionary movement, the interrelationship between the organic nature and organizational reality of mission and any common factors that exist in the success or long term demise of a missionary movement. The outcome will be to develop analytical tools that provide lessons for contemporary mission.

CS610 Thesis Proposal: Research Methods II: 3 credits

A post-graduate degree should be characterized by heightened competencies in areas such as reflective thought, critical analysis and familiarity with relevant literature. Employing appropriate research methodologies Trinity post-graduate degrees comprise a significant research track that enables the student to explore ministry specific fields of study. The objective is to reinforce lifelong learning, the humility of a scholar and applied learning relevant to the student’s own context. This allows some degree of specialization whilst accommodating academic rigor and the positive involvement of a well-qualified supervisor. Additionally, this part of the program is designed to equip those students who wish to pursue further studies.

CS620 The Biblical Theology of Justice (elective): 3 credits

Combining biblical studies and theology, this course identifies the overarching biblical narrative of God’s love for the poor, the widow, the orphan and the foreigner. Based on the Talmudic concept of Jubilee this course will trace the messianic story of the Bible culminating in the coming of Christ to bring the message of the Kingdom of God. Having established a theological rationale, this course will then explore contemporary models of expressing God’s Kingdom through acts of service, the establishment of ministries of mercy and the responsibility of the contemporary church to be a voice for the oppressed and an advocate for the poor.

TH690 Thesis: 9 credits

The capstone of the M.A. Missional Leadership is a research based project enabling the student to undertake a serious piece of academic writing in an area specific to his/her interest. The project involves participation in a dynamic Research Training Program (RTP). RTP is included in the residential sessions and will guide the student through the entire research process from proposal and annotated bibliography to thesis.

This is Learning for a Lifetime.

Take the next step in your leadership journey today.