Doctor of Ministry in Leadership and Spiritual Formation

At A Glance

38 Semester credit hours
$648* Cost per semester credit hour
3 Years Program length


ATS (Association of Theological Schools), NWCCU


Hybrid (online courses with 4 Retreat intensives in Cannon Beach, Oregon)

Tuition cost for entire program

$24,624* (plus $2,150 per Retreat intensive)

* All stated financial information is subject to change. Financial aid available.

students conversing in classroom

Influencing like Christ

from the Inside Out

At Portland Seminary, we hold to this conviction: Who you are directly impacts all whom you serve. We recognize that your formational journey will directly influence your vocational one.

It’s a belief that drives our Leadership and Spiritual Formation Doctor of Ministry (DMin) program, which produces graduates who are serving as pastors, chaplains, nonprofit leaders, counselors, educators and innovators around the world.

What Will I Experience?

Under the guidance of Dr. MaryKate Morse and Dr. Ken Van Vliet, the program emphasizes:


As a student in this program, you will gain:

  • A more authentic understanding of yourself and a refreshed relationship with Christ
  • An increased capacity for managing and influencing complex, diverse systems
  • A lifelong learning community
  • Expertise to become a "Doctor of the Church"

Program Details

Dr. MaryKate Morse and Dr. Ken Van Vliet

Lead-mentor Directed

Lead mentors Dr. MaryKate Morse (original architect) and Dr. Ken Van Vliet (lead pastor at Monte Vista Chapel) set the overall inspiration, ethos and coursework for the program. They collaborate with spiritually mature guest mentors who possess unique content expertise to guide students through the various components of the program.

Dr. Morse and Dr. Van Vliet work together to teach four core courses, design four formational retreats, facilitate online conversations, and participate in the Project Portfolio examination.

Portland Seminary program cohort meets in small peer groups

Online and Flexible

You will join a cohort that meets once a week for a Zoom conversation with program mentors and engage in online forum discussions with the cohort throughout the week. You will also regularly interact with your project faculty member in small peer groups each semester.


Each fall semester, students are organized into a cohort of 12 to 18 that journey together through the program. The cohort provides a learning community for sharing research, insights and personal ministry experiences.

Academic Retreats in Cannon Beach, Oregon

You will participate in one online orientation to begin the program and participate in four academic retreats of seven to eight nights each. Each retreat is carefully crafted to provide a welcoming, spiritually formative experience as well as academic content. The retreats become a "sacred space" for connection. 

Retreats will give cohorts the opportunity to follow a daily rhythm of prayer under the guidance of Dr. Morse and Dr. Van Vliet, of fellowship around meals, and of space for reflection. You’ll also engage with guest experts and with your project faculty member.

Portland Seminary faculty mentor talking with students

Project Portfolio

In the Project Portfolio research sequence, you will journey through a series of milestone assignments to develop a doctoral project that addresses a Need, Problem, or Opportunity (NPO) in your ministry context.

Project Faculty

You will be paired with a project faculty member for three years. Project faculty join students at key retreats and meet regularly online to guide them in their research.


Spiritual Direction Training Opportunities

If you’re interested in spiritual direction training beyond your DMin in LSF, you can take courses after you graduate. The courses are offered in the fall and spring semesters.

Spotlight on Student Experience

Watch video: Pastor Bryan Kim | Leadership and Spiritual Formation Doctor of Ministry

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Haley Holman

Haley Holman

Admissions Counselor, Portland Seminary

George Fox University is required to make cost of attendance (COA) information publicly available on this website.