Christian Formation and MinistryBachelor of Arts

Change Your Mind. Change Your Heart. Change the World.

The Christian Formation & Ministry (CFM) Major is more than just an academic program. As a student your professors will challenge you to deepen your life with God, to grow in your own faith life, and to engage in spiritual disciplines and other life changing practices which can radically reshape you as a person. Yet, the end goal is not solely your own formation in Christ. Our goal for you is to become more Christlike in every aspect of your life so you can articulate your faith to others in both your words and your actions. In this way you become an actively engaged participant in God’s work in our shared world.

Start your future in Christian Formation and Ministry.

Program Highlights

Grow in Christ with a degree in Christian Formation & Ministry

Actively participate in God’s work as you re-shape your formation in Christ and show your faith to others in both words and actions through a practice based approach.

Service to the Community

Students engage in service projects that encourage growth and understanding of how spiritual practice aligns with practical issues of life through available internships and opportunities to serve in Campus Ministries.

Practice Based Approach

The degree curriculum is practice focused. Students participate in ministry in their local faith based communities and engage in spiritual formation activities that help to reshape their thoughts, hearts and actions.

Leave a Legacy

Develop your faith story as you explore your faith at Friends University. Learn to articulate your belief system through conversation, writing and ministry.

“My primary major may determine what I do, but the CSF program will continue to develop how I do it and the kind of person I become.”

AJ Cossell, Christian Spiritual Formation Graduate, 2017

“I am thankful for the CSF program for giving me good and beautiful images of God, enabling me to live more fully into my vocation, providing opportunities to serve and ultimately teaching me how to love God and my neighbor with more of my heart, soul, mind and strength.”

Josiah Brown, Christian Spiritual Formation Graduate, 2017

“The Christian Spiritual Formation program is one of the main reasons I came to Friends University. I wanted to be part of the CSF program because I wanted to learn as much about Jesus as possible. There was an unquenchable thirst for God in my life, and the CSF program has helped make that longing more acute.”

Samantha Filer, Christian Spiritual Formation


Degree Choices

Two degrees to choose from.

  • Christian Formation & MinistryThe Christian Formation & Ministry major serves as a pathway to a profession in ministry fields or as preparation for seminary and ministry-based graduate school.
  • Christian Spiritual FormationThe Christian Spiritual Formation (CSF) major is specifically designed to be a second major for students who want to learn how a heart and soul that have been shaped by the Christian faith can greatly enhance their chosen career path, then work toward developing that deepened spirituality.

A Christ-like Approach to Formation and Ministry

This unique program of study lies at the heart of the Mission of Friends University. For over three decades, Christian spiritual formation has been part of the DNA of Friends. Dr. Richard Foster, author of Celebration of Discipline, and Dr. James Bryan Smith, author of The Good and Beautiful God, began teaching at Friends University in the 1980s and 1990s. In fact, Foster and Smith founded the world renowned spiritual formation ministry, Renovare, at Friends in 1988. Dr. Smith established The Apprentice Institute for Christian Spiritual Formation in 2009.

The Christian Formation & Ministry degree serves as a pathway to a profession in ministry fields. While some of our graduates pursue advanced degrees at seminary and graduate school, many others begin careers in ministry settings in churches (as pastors, youth pastors, spiritual formation or discipleship pastors) and in para-church ministries and other Christian organizations.

The second major in Christian Spiritual Formation (CSF) is structured to pair easily with several other areas of study at Friends and is a perfect fit for students wanting to pursue another degree yet still engage with our professors. Students may also select to pursue one of three minors we now offer:

  • Minor in Christian Formation & Ministry
  • Minor in Philosophy
  • Minor in Biblical Studies

How to Apply

To qualify for scholarship, you must:

  1. Intend to pursue a Bachelor of Arts in Christian Formation and Ministry (CFM)
  2. Or intend to pursue a second major in Christian Spiritual Formation (CSF)

To apply to the Christian Formation and Ministry or Christian Spiritual Formation Program and for scholarship, you must:

  1. Apply to Friends University at
  2. Once accepted, you must apply to the program by filling out this application form.
  3. After your application has been received and evaluated, you will receive a letter in the mail notifying you of any awarded scholarship amount and a letter of intent. 

By filling out the FAFSA and applying for additional scholarships, you could qualify for more than $24,000 annually, which would help cover your tuition, books and living expenses! Here are some grants and scholarships available:

ScholarshipAnnual AmountHow to ApplySourceDeadline
CFM/CSF ScholarshipUp to $4,500View instructions above for how to applyFriends UniversityFebruary 24, 2023
AcademicUp to $12,000This will be awarded by the Financial Aid Department to you when you apply to Friends UniversityFriends University
On-Campus Job to Campus Ministries involvement - $1,500Up to $1,500We will help you find a part-time job on campus (up to 25 hours per week). Browse jobs by clicking here.Friends UniversityOn-going

*students must enroll in a CFM/CSF credit earning course each semester
**you only need to fill out the FAFSA once each year to be eligible for federal and state scholarships

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