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Are you looking to discover what your future ministry, vocation or service in the church might be? Or perhaps you know somebody who is. If so, Discover may be a great way to explore further.

What is Discover?

Discover is a program of study and spiritual discernment designed to help people explore how they might serve in the church.

Recognising ‘the whisper of the Holy Spirit’, however it comes to us, is just the start of a process of discerning God’s call in our lives. Discover provides some steps on the pathway for Christians who are exploring how and where God may be seeking to shape them for ministry. It uses an action-reflection model of learning, which assists participants to hear and respond to God’s call to service in the church more fully.

More than academic

A large component of Discover is the Diploma in Theology or Graduate Diploma in Theology course of study, however it is much more than that. Theology is as much about spiritual formation as it is about academic study. It involves the hands and the heart as well as the head.

Discover integrates the academic and the practical in an active and dynamic way, so that ministry is deepened and enriched by biblical and confessional teaching, all the time remaining grounded in the church’s community and life.


While supported centrally through webinars and other individual and collective conversation, Discover intentionally focuses on assisting participants to develop reflective ministry practices in their local context. Each student records their personal journey of vocational learning and reflection in their Discover portfolio.


The academic component of Discover consists of units of higher education study covering various ministry and theological areas, including biblical studies, church history, congregational life and service, pastoral care, and Lutheran teaching. Unit choices and options will vary according to the student’s interests and vocational direction.

Congregational service

The core of the Discover program is congregational service and ministry, which provide the context for the reflection. This takes place under the oversight of the congregational pastor and other mentors.

Hearing God’s call is both an individual and a collective endeavour, hence Discover incorporates both—the student’s own personal reflection as well as the input of the church community. Some participants come into the program with a personal sense of call they wish to test; others are asking the question 'What do you wish of me Lord?' Either way, Discover seeks to assist participants to

  • Be aware
  • Think theologically
  • Serve faithfully

After Discover

Students participate in Discover concurrently with a formal ALC academic program, usually the Diploma in Theology or Graduate Diploma in Theology (one year full-time equivalent). For students subsequently seeking entry to the pastoral studies stream, the Discover portfolio is used in the admission process and the initial qualification counts as the first year of training.

For participants exploring other ministry avenues, the initial qualification may be an academic endpoint or the first year of an ongoing undergraduate or postgraduate academic journey which results in a higher qualification.

More information

See more information in the Discover program information.

Enquire now about enrolling in Discover for 2021: email or phone 1800 625 193.