Course Description

A study of the history and polity of the Church of the Nazarene, with attention given to practical administration of the local church, the Articles of Faith and Covenant of Christian Conduct, and accountability structures to assist integrity.

The course includes how to use correct accounting procedures, making budgets, fund raising, using designated income, and expenses. A brief history of the Church of the Nazarene will be included, including the history of the denomination in the student’s own country. The course will cover the Local, District, and General structures, nature, and purpose as well as how they are funded. Students will role-play practice the various boards and positions found in our Nazarene government at the three levels (with a strong focus on the local level structures). Student will also role-play practice training others to take over various administrative tasks. The structures of the Church of the Nazarene will be compared with other church structures currently used around the world.

Course Rational

Administration is a weekly experience for pastors. They may write a research paper a few times during their ministry but they will turn in expenses, run meetings, count members, and turn in reports every week, month, and year for their whole ministry. Many pastors prefer to teach and preach, but the Church of the Nazarene places the administrative burden directly on the pastor. The only staff member at most small churches is the pastor. They are often the most highly educated member of their congregation. Members expect them to be able to handle administration with integrity and skill. The way a pastor handles administration often sets the trust level of a congregation in other areas as well. Many local church conflicts can be avoided by using well-run transparent systems.

Program Outcomes


CN-10 Ability to describe Nazarene history in terms of events, personalities, and theology.

CN-11 Ability to describe the events, personalities and theology in the history of the Church of the Nazarene and other indigenous churches in Asia-Pacific.

CN-12 Ability to explain the structure and mission of the Church of the Nazarene from both historical and current perspectives.

CN-13 Ability to explain the Nazarene position on speaking in tongues.

CN-16 Ability to explain the content and meaning of the Nazarene Articles of Faith.

CN-20 Ability to explain the core values of the Church of the Nazarene and its global and local implementation.


CP-8 Ability to determine direction and personnel to equip God’s people for works of service.

CP-10 Ability to lead and to discover, develop, and deploy leaders.

CP-12 Ability to ability to administrate finances and prepare reports.

CP-14 Ability to teach the position of the Church of the Nazarene on the doctrine of holiness.


CH-3 Ability to practice personal Christian ethics in faithful stewardship, in personal relationships, and in finances.


CX-5 Ability to use and develop missional and cross-cultural principles.

Activity Outcomes


ACC-5 Explain the accountability and reporting structures in the local, district, and general church.


ADM-1 Identify and demonstrate ways to be Christlike in administering a local church.

ADM-4 Tell the story of the history of the Church of the Nazarene and consider its mission, message, governance, and its place in the larger Christian story.

ADM-5 Demonstrate how to teach and equip the members of the congregation with the knowledge and tools needed to fulfill the mission of the church using the resources of all levels, boards, and auxiliaries with good stewardship and reporting procedures.

ADM-6 Demonstrate how to train financial systems, identify key elements of profit / loss and balance statements, develop a budget together with a church board and lead the board in special projects.

ADM-7 Explain the Manual provisions that guide a local congregation through a church year, including the annual meeting of the church and various auxiliary organizations.

ADM-8 Demonstrate how to train a local church treasurer and church board secretary to report monthly and annually to the church board and congregation.

ADM-9 Demonstrate how to prayerfully discover God’s purpose and vision for a particular congregation at this time and in this place.

Continuing Education

CED-3 Demonstrate how to evaluate and prioritize church and community issues in light of social and environmental aspects in order of urgency. Actively collaborate with local officials, demonstrating an awareness of their roles, and seek to bring appropriate solutions that make the church a positive asset in bringing remedy or relief.


DIS-4 Use the reading of God’s Word to foster spiritual growth and for personal devotions.

DIS-10 Teach others the Nazarene Articles of Faith and clearly explain either orally or in writing a Wesleyan-Arminian understanding of the Nazarene Articles of Faith.


LEA-5 Demonstrate the ability to conceive and articulate purpose, mission, and vision, and to develop strategic plans in a local church.


MIN-1 Demonstrate Christlike servanthood through a ministry activity.


PRA-1 Model the prayers of Christ and His relationship to the Father through a strong passion for a life of prayer shown by devoting time to prayer and keeping a prayer journal, including a list of lost people for whom God has made them responsible.

PRA-2 Explain the difference between a Biblical prayer and prayers from other religions, such as Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism and folk religions, etc. Explain speaking in tongues from a Nazarene perspective. Explain various life situation prayers, and be able to list various kinds of historical prayers.


RIT-1 Use various rituals to point to the person and work of Christ and explain how this impacts the student and the church.

RIT-2 Explain and demonstrate several techniques for administrating various rituals (weddings, funerals, baptisms, and communion must be included) including theological, cultural issues and legal implications. Demonstrate public reading or memorized scripture quotation during a ritual.

Content 39%
Competency 37%
Character 13%
Context 11%

Course Textbooks

Nazarene Exploring Nazarene History and Polity, rev 6. RIIE Course Module. Kansas City: Clergy Services, 2002.

Church of the Nazarene, Manual, 2018-21.

Course Requirements

Form teams of 3 people for some activities. When possible also form groups of 7 people to role play a church board.

  1. The local school’s attendance policy should be placed here.
  2. Bible Reading and Prayer Journal: Students should read through the Bible as designated in the Master Plan for Bible Reading in the Course of Study. For this course, students will read 2 Samuel 19 – 1 Kings 22 and John 14 – 21. The focus of the Scripture reading for this course will be on encountering the Holy Spirit through prayer. In addition to reading the Scripture noted above, students will spend at least one hour per week in prayer. Each week, students should choose one different issue in which God is changing them and choose one different person for whom to intercede before God and makes these two things the focus of the prayer time. At the close of the week, students should write an entry into their journal at least one paragraph of 200 words about their experience.

(Outcomes CH-3, ADM-1, DIS-4, PRA-1)

  1. Team Discussions: Students will be divided into teams to role play the activities of a local church board, including nomination, election, reporting, preparation for the annual meeting, moving the board to a decision. This activity will demonstrate also the student’s ability to budget for a project and move a board to a decision. Teams will also discuss the application of the “Covenant of Christian Conduct” to their local context and what issues are most pressing in living holy lives in their community.

(Outcomes CN-20, CP-12, ACC-5, ADM-4, ADM-5, ADM-7, ADM-8, LEA-5)

  1. Memorize the Articles of Faith using Study maps. The students will demonstrate how to help members memorize the articles of faith.

(Outcomes CP-14, CN-16, DIS-10, PRA-3, RIT-1, RIT-2)

  1. Session Evaluation: The instructor will evaluate the students on various lectures on a regular basis.

(Outcomes CN-10, CN-11, CN-13, CN-20, ADM-4, ADM-7, PRA-2, RIT-1)

  1. SWOT Analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats): Students can work with a local pastor, their own pastor, or with their own church if they are a pastor, to complete this analysis of a local church. Students will then write a 1 to 2 page report or give a 15 minutes class presentation about the findings and their experience.

(Outcomes CP-8, CP-10, ADM-9)

  1. Bookkeeping and Budgets: Students will construct a local church budget showing income and expenses for a whole year. Make sample receipts showing how to turn these into a treasurer / bookkeeper. Do basic bookkeeping for one month’s worth of entries. Interpret two months of treasurer’s reports to a local church board. Balance sheets and supporting documents will be produced and explained by the student.

(Outcomes CP-12, ADM-5, ADM-6, ADM-7)

  1. Community Project: The teams will develop a project to be done in the local community where the class is located. This project should emphasize one of the core values of the Church of the Nazarene, such as a service project, compassionate ministry, or evangelism. This project will be the subject of a role play (above) with the Church Board. The team will carry out the project before the end of the class. Teams can join with other teams if they want to do a larger project.

(Outcomes CX-5, CED-3, ICO-1, MIN-1)

Course Assessment

Journal                                      10%

Role play                                   10%

Memorize the Articles of faith    10%

Evaluation                                  20%

SWOT Analysis                          15%

Church Budget                           15%

Community Project                     20%

Course Outline

Topics include (can be ordered to follow the outline in the Manual):

  1. A history of the denomination
  2. The global Church of the Nazarene
  3. Articles of Faith
  4. The Covenant of Christian Conduct and the Covenant of Christian Character.
  5. The steps for bringing in a member into membership.
  6. The student’s ability to correctly access the Manual description for various offices and list those responsibilities.
  7. The process for nomination and election
  8. The overall structure of the Church of the Nazarene
  9. The responsibilities of a District
  10. The three basic types of church governments used around the world: Episcopal, Presbyterian, Congregational.
  11. Accountability to others / Spiritual and Financial (Tithing)
  12. Vision
  13. Officers
  14. Mentoring
  15. Team formation
  16. Ritual
  17. Budgets and reports
  18. Statistics and reports