The Be In Christ Church of Canada requires all pastoral and ministry staff to be credentialed by the Be In Christ Church of Canada. The credentialing process ensures theological alignment between you and the congregation you will serve or the para-church ministry where you represent the BIC.
There are two levels of credentialing with the Be In Christ Church of Canada. The entry point for all new pastors is the ‘Licensed’ level. Once all requirements have been completed, the second level of credentialing is ‘Ordained.’ The additional requirements for ordination are primarily educational as described below.
As you begin the discernment process for a ministry position within the Be In Christ Church of Canada, please read the material below. If you have any questions during the process please contact your team leader.
Step 1 - Self Assessment
We believe that the Be In Christ Church of Canada has an important and unique vision of Jesus that has been lost by most other denominations. However, we recognize that not everyone will agree with our Jesus-centered approach to the Christian life.
To assess your personal compatibility with the BIC, take the time to read through The Pastoral Way website as well as our Be In Christ website. Of particular note, visit the page on The Pastoral Way titled Theology. The theology page has many resources that will provide you with information about the Be In Christ including our theological, historical and cultural identity as a denomination. Make use of the resources on the theology page to ensure you understand and are comfortable with the anabaptist values and distinctives that are unique to the BIC.
Step 2 - Team Leader Meeting
The BIC church family has three expressions that represent the variety of churches within our denomination. Although we are one family with shared mission, vision and values, we embrace the different style of churches that exist within our denomination. To learn more, visit our public About Us page where you can read about our expressions, history and core values.
Please contact the team leader for the ministry expression within which you would like to serve. If you unsure about who your team leader would be, feel free to email Todd Lester and he will direct you to the right person. The Team Leader for each expression is listed below with contact information for each Team Leader. If you are unsure about which expression you would like to join, consult with Todd Lester for further direction.
Step 3 - Application
Once your Team Leader has affirmed this next step and you consider yourself to have theological affinity with the BIC, please complete the Credentialing Profile & Questionnaire. This questionnaire is a very important part in the process and you should take the necessary time to thoughtfully complete this document.
Please complete the fillable PDF on your computer, save and send it back via email to your Team Leader. In addition, we will need a digital photo of you that includes only you against a monochrome background and, unlike a passport, we really want you to smile.
Step 4 - Background Check
The BIC requires you to provide a recent original document Criminal Record Check, validated in the last twelve months from your local police department including a Vulnerable Sector report. Once you have obtained the proper documents, either send or have the original documents sent directly to our office at Be In Christ Church of Canada, 2700 Bristol Circle, Oakville, ON L6H 6E1.
Step 5 - Credentialing Interview
Once all documentation has been submitted, you will be contacted by our office to set up an interview with your Team Leader. When the interview with your Team Leader has been successfully completed, a recommendation will go forward to Todd Lester for review and final approval.
Step 6 - Issuing of Credentials
You will be issued a ministerial ‘License’ based on the completion of the steps described above. Once licensed, your credentials have a five-year time limit allowing you time to take next steps to complete all requirements and any further theological education in order to move toward Ordination level.
There are a number of continuing steps you are required to take for Ordination. To obtain Ordination, all of our credentialed pastors must receive theological education in order to equip them for the complexities of ministry in the 21st Century. Ordination requires that you have completed a bachelor’s degree in theological, biblical or pastoral studies or an equivalent. The education requirement is to be completed within five years of granting your Ministerial License. If you do not have an equivalent degree, you will be expected to complete a BIC Certificate In Practical Theology from Emmanuel Bible College. Todd Lester will discuss any ongoing educational requirements with you when this is required.
Within the first two years of service, we require all of our new pastors to attend the annual New Pastors Orientation Retreat. More information is available at New Pastors Orientation (O Retreat). The O Retreat will acclimatize you to the BIC pastoral community by focusing on our history, theological streams, culture, hermeneutics, cultural engagement, and pastoral expectations.
There are four statuses for a credentialed person in the Be In Christ Church of Canada. Your status will be determined by your Team Leader and/or the Credentialing Overseer. Changes regarding your credentialed status can be expressed in writing to Todd Lester who oversees the credentialing process.
Please note that credentials with the BIC are linked to a ministry assignment. When a ministry assignment has been completed, your credentials will be removed until a new ministry assignment is obtained. If you wish to have credentials that persist beyond your ministry with BIC, we would encourage you to look to other credentialing bodies.