The Women’s Ministries program investigates women’s roles in scripture, historical beliefs about women’s relationships with God, and various spiritual and leadership topics that will support strong lay ministries by, for, and with women in the church and community. It is based on egalitarian theology – the belief that women’s and men’s ministries are equal in value – and open to all who want to enlarge their learning.
Develop tools to make a big impact in your ministry and gain a network of other Christians in women’s ministries from around the country!
The IFD Certification in Women’s Ministries requires just four 6-week courses of $125 each — a total of $500.
- Certification courses must be completed in order. Courses will be taught on a yearly rotation.
- Once you begin, you can complete all the courses you need for certification in just one year!
- First courses in the certification cycles are offered in either January or August, with some certifications relaunching at both times.
- This program is taught online via Blackboard Learn. Courses are mostly asynchronous, meaning you can complete the work at the time most convenient for your schedule. Daily engagement on the Discussion Board with peers, required reading, and assignments ensure a quality learning experience. Some courses offer a required or optional live video-based session – see individual course descriptions for more details.
2023 Course Schedule
January 16 – February 24, 2023
March 13 – April 28, 2023 (No class during Holy Week)
August 21 – September 29, 2023
October 9 – November 17, 2023
Certification Course List
Add a Denominational Emphasis
You can add an Emphasis in United Methodist Studies to your certificate by taking just one additional 6-week course:
Enroll in the first course!
If the first course is full, or is not currently enrolling, you will be able to sign up for course opening notifications.
Meet the Instructors
In addition to having decades of experience as a woman in lay or clergy ministry, Rev. Beth Perry took her first college course on women in religion over 30 years ago and taught her last college course on women in the Bible in 2019. She created this certificate program and leads the first two courses in it.
Sue Tesar is a certified lay minister at Brunswick United Methodist Church in Brunswick, Maine. She completed the first Women’s Ministry certification course in December 2020, and has been a passionate advocate for women’s ministries ever since. Her ministries include worship planning, photography and administrative roles. She is a retired nurse massage therapist.
Martha E. Banks, Ph.D., is a retired clinical and research neuropsychologist and a former professor at The College of Wooster and Kent State University. Dr. Banks is a graduate of Brown University and the University of Rhode Island. Her primary research is on traumatic brain injuries sustained by victims of intimate partner violence. As a Certified Lay Speaker, she preaches about domestic violence and leads courses on faith communities’ responses to intimate partner violence.