If you are interested in becoming an ordained minister in the CRCA we would love to encourage you to continue reading. In the CRCA, we encourage candidates for ordination to study through the Reformed Theological College (RTC). Once candidates have completed their studies they will need to complete a vicariate (a one year internship alongside a senior minister). The training process and vicariate placement are overseen by the Candidacy Committee (CC) who approve students as Ministry Candidates. The CC has a State Representative in each Classis as well as an Executive in Victoria (Geelong). If you are interested in becoming an ordained minister in the CRCA we would encourage you to start the process before you start studying.
Currently there are three ordination tracks available:
- RTC study for 4 years
- Task3 (2 years church-based study and 2 years at RTC)
- Study at another theological college and 1 year at RTC
1. Initial contact
Contact your local State Representative, who will come and visit you, to get acquainted with you, to talk about your motives to enter the ordained ministry of the CRCA, as well as guide you through our process.
The State Reps are as follows:
Rev Clinton Berends (chairman)
Rev Ron Nauta
Mrs Mavis Thompson
Mr Adrian Bekker
Mrs Henriet Vanderstoep (clerk)
2. Letter of Recommendation
The CC will seek a letter of recommendation from your home church, in order to gauge things such as character (1 Tim 3), and how your gifts have been demonstrated in the ministry of the local church.
3. Psychological Profiling
The CC will also ask you to complete a psychological profile, a ‘Working with Children Check’ (or the local state equivalent), as well as a ‘Police Check’.
4. Study Requirements
The CC will discuss your study requirements with the RTC and will approve a program that meets ordination requirements according to one of the recognised ordination tracks.
Once these things have been done and the CC has approved you as a ministry candidate they will let both you, your local church council, and the RTC know. Your approval will mean that you are eligible for RTC student subsidies and for any funding the denomination chooses to provide for ministry candidates.
6. Annual Reviews
Once you begin your studies the CC will meet with you every year to see how you are progressing in the following areas: spiritual growth, personal development, academic progress, family and church life, as well as financial and special needs. The RTC will also provide an annual written report as part of this process.
As a ministry candidate you will also be assigned a mentor who will support you in your studies and walk you through any areas of concern identified in your letter of recommendation, psychological profiling, or interaction with the CC and RTC faculty.
8. Final Approval
The CC will endeavour to do all it can to encourage you in your studies so that after you have completed your degree, we can confidently declare you as a suitable candidate for a vicariate within the CRCA. However, the CC, in close consultation with faculty and your mentor(s), retains the right to withhold the possibility of a vicariate should that deem to be prudent for your welfare and the CRCA denomination. Should that disappointment eventuate, you have the right to appeal to your sending Church Council to review our decision.
Once you have successfully completed your studies, the CC, in consultation with the CRCA congregations, will determine the best place for your vicariate. During your vicariate the CC will keep in regular contact with you and your supervising minister to see how things are going.
10. Eligibility for Call (Preliminary Examination)
Towards the end of your vicariate you will need to apply, via the Church Council where you are doing your vicariate, to have a ‘Preliminary Examination’ in your local Classis. Upon successful completion the local Classis will declare you eligible to be called as a Minister of the Word and Sacraments.
11. Ordination (Final Examination)
Once you accept a call to a church you will need to successfully complete a ‘Final Examination,’ in the Classis of the calling church, and upon successful completion you may be installed as a Minister of the Word and Sacraments in the CRCA.