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Social Justice Specialization

The specializations for the Master of Arts in Christian Ministry (MACM) degree program have been designed in light of the mission of Memphis Theological Seminary and the strengths of the faculty. Students will be assigned a faculty adviser who will guide the student in course selections so that those reflect the specialized ministry in which the student chooses to focus.

The Master of Arts in Christian Ministry offers specializations within different areas.  All specializations share the common core of required courses in Bible, theology, and church history, along with requirements in the areas of the social context for ministry and the practice of ministry.  The latter requirements are shaped with regard to the student’s specialization and include practicum and immersion components.


The Social Justice specialization is intended for those preparing for ministry with persons and organizations addressing systemic injustice.

Students may wish to focus their study in relation to a context such as urban ministry, rural ministry, or prison ministry. Specialized course work should address such topics as theological analysis of power, cultural dynamics, social institutions and social change, social movements, and community organizing. In consultation with your advisor you should select courses that fit with your interests and your plans for your integrative seminar project.

Core Courses

Introduction to Theological Study for Ministry 3
Interpreting the Hebrew Bible 3
Interpreting the New Testament 3
Christian Heritage I 3
Christian Heritage II 3
Christian Ethics 3
Total credits in Core Courses 18

Cultural Context

Context and Models for Mission and Evangelism 3
Interfaith and Intercultural Elective 3
Interfaith and Intercultural Elective (with immersion) 3
Total credits in Cultural Context 9

Personal and Spiritual Formation

Formation, Spirituality, and Ministry 3
Formation and Contextual Ministry (involves a ministry placement in an organization engaged in social justice work) 3
Total credits in Personal and Spiritual Formation 6

Specialization Courses

Social Justice: Biblical and Theological Foundations 3
Elective from the List Below* 3
Elective from the List Below* 3
Elective from the List Below* 3
Total credits in Personal and Spiritual Formation 12


Integrative Seminar 

MACM Integrative Seminar: Formation and the Practice of Ministry 3
Total credits in Integrative Seminar 3


Total credits: 48


Note: Within the area of specialization no more than three courses may transfer in from another accredited seminary.

*Religion and Contemporary American Society, Religion and the U.S. Presidency, Religion, Slavery, and the U.S. Civil War, The Forgotten Prophet: Prophetic Rhetoric of Bishop Henry McNeal Turner, The Historical Development of Black Religion in America, The African American Prophetic Tradition, Civil Rights and Religion, Twentieth Century Saints and Martyrs, Subversive Sisters: A History of Women in the Christian Tradition, Mobilizing for Social Justice: Advocacy Ministry with Children and Youth, Teaching Jesus, Bible and the Blues, Christian Dialogue with World Religions, Religious Diversity in North America, Religion and Contemporary American Society, Solidarity and Friendship with Latinx in Our Midst, Studies in Islam and Its Cultures, Modern Judaism, Two Pillars of Judaism: Sacred Time and Sacred Space, The Holocaust and Its Roots, African Traditional Religions, Mission and Evangelism in a Globalized World, Jesus, Jails, and Justice, Christian Ministry in the City, Spirituality and Social Justice, John Wesley and the Poor, Religious Discourse of African American Women, Rhetoric and Race, Jesus Was a Carpenter: Faith Perspectives on Labor and Justice, The Doctrine of Creation, The Theology and Life of Martin Luther King, Jr., Rhetoric of Martin Luther King, Jr., Male and Female God Created Them: A Theology of Gender and Sexuality, Christian Political Thought, Critical Race Theory, Howard Thurman: Mystic, Pastor, and Prophet, Preaching for Social Change

Colloquia CreditsMACM students are required to earn 6 theological colloquia credits. The colloquia are administration and faculty-approved events held on campus or other events approved by the student’s faculty adviser.

Required GPA for Graduation: Students are required to maintain a minimum 2.00 cumulative grade point average.

Requirements for Ordination: Memphis Theological Seminary offers additional courses that meet ordination requirements for certain denominations. Students seeking ordination should consult their denomination officials to ascertain current requirements and procedures.

NOTE: Degree requirements listed here are for overview purposes only. Official degree requirements are found in the most current Academic Catalog or on current degree sheets.


Students should be able to understand and critically interpret scripture, history, and Christian theology.

Cultural Context

Students should be able to analyze local and global contexts and respectfully explore culturally non-dominant perspectives in light of Christian tradition.



Students should be able to show growth in personal faith, emotional maturity, and moral integrity.



Students should be able to employ practical theological reflection and exercise skills within a specialized ministry.

Important Admission and Financial Aid dates 

NOTICE: If you intend to apply for scholarships as an incoming student you MUST meet the early application deadline.


August 9, 2024
Fall 2024 Admission deadline for Masters & Certificate programs
August 19-22, 2024
Fall 2024 Orientation and Residency I for New MDiv & MACM
August 19, 2024
First day of Fall 2024 Classes
October 1, 2024
2025-2026 FAFSA Opens
MTS School Code G10529
December 31, 2024
Spring 2025 Scholarship Application deadline
January 10, 2025
Spring 2025 Admission deadline
January 13-16, 2025
Spring 2025 Orientation and Residency I for New MDiv & MACM
January 13, 2025
First Day of Spring 2025 Classes
April 30, 2025
Admission deadline for DMin program
May 31, 2025
Fall 2025 Scholarship Application
deadline & Fall 2025 Early Admission deadline
for Masters &

Certificate programs
August 8, 2025
Fall 2025 admission deadline for Master's &
Certificate programs
Admissions Department
We appreciate your interest in Memphis Theological Seminary. The MTS admissions staff is committed to supporting you in your theological journey. We are here to help you while you are discerning your call, considering degree and certificate options, and supporting you as you do ministry in the real world. At MTS we are committed to educating and sustaining men and women for ordained and lay ministry in the church and the world through shaping and inspiring lives devoted to scholarship, piety, and justice. Please don’t hesitate to ask how we can assist you along in your journey.


LaShonna Williams


1 (901) 334 5887

Associate Dean for Students