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Career and Education Opportunities for Ministers in Birmingham, Alabama

For those living in the Birmingham, Alabama area, there are many career and education opportunities for ministers. There are currently 7,670 working ministers in Alabama; this should grow by 31% to about 10,040 working ministers in the state by 2016. This is better than the national trend for ministers, which sees this job pool growing by about 12.7% over the next eight years. Ministers generally conduct religious worship and perform other spiritual functions associated with beliefs and practices of religious faith or denomination.

Ministers earn about $19 hourly or $40,620 yearly on average in Alabama and about $20 hourly or $41,730 annually on average nationally. Earnings for ministers are the same as earnings in the general category of Religious Services in Alabama and better than general Religious Services category earnings nationally. Ministers work in a variety of jobs, including: hospital chaplain, marriage counselor minister, and deaconess.

The Birmingham area is home to fifteen schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Birmingham where you can get a degree as a minister. The most common level of education for ministers is a Bachelor's degree. You can expect to spend about four years studying to be a minister if you already have a high school diploma.


Minister video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, ministers conduct religious worship and perform other spiritual functions associated with beliefs and practices of religious faith or denomination. They also provide spiritual and moral guidance and assistance to members.

Ministers pray and promote spirituality. They also read from sacred texts such as the Bible or Koran. Equally important, ministers have to ready and deliver sermons and other talks. They are often called upon to administer religious rites or ordinances. They are expected to share data related to religious issues by writing articles or teaching. Finally, ministers perform administrative duties such as overseeing building management, ordering supplies, contracting for services and repairs, and supervising the work of staff members and volunteers.

Every day, ministers are expected to be able to speak clearly. They need to articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for ministers to organize and lead regular religious services. They are often called upon to conduct special ceremonies such as weddings and confirmations. Somewhat less frequently, ministers are also expected to share data related to religious issues by writing articles or teaching.

They also have to be able to participate in fundraising efforts to support congregation efforts and facilities and organize and engage in interfaith and recreational efforts sponsored by or pertaining to their religion. And finally, they sometimes have to administer religious rites or ordinances.

Like many other jobs, ministers must have exceptional integrity and have a strong concern for others.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Birmingham include:

  • Religious Activities Director. Direct and coordinate activities of a denominational group to meet religious needs of students. Plan, direct, or coordinate church school programs designed to promote religious education among church membership. May provide counseling and guidance relative to marital, health, and religious problems.


Samford University - Birmingham, AL

Samford University, 800 Lakeshore Drive, Birmingham, AL 35229-2240. Samford University is a small university located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,469 students and an admission rate of 89%. Samford University has 3 areas of study related to Minister. They are:

  • Theology/Theological Studies, master's degree which graduated 11 students in 2008.
  • Divinity/Ministry, professional degree which graduated 46 students in 2008.
  • Theological and Ministerial Studies, Other Specialties, doctor's degree which graduated 8 students in 2008.


Preventing Disease Transmission: A two-hour training module for employers and employees who, while on the job, may be exposed to blood or other body fluids that could cause infection.

For more information, see the American Red Cross website.


Birmingham, Alabama
Birmingham, Alabama photo by Eric_in_SF

Birmingham is located in Jefferson County, Alabama. It has a population of over 228,798, which has shrunk by 5.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Birmingham, 81, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Birmingham cost $187,300 on average, which is well above the state average. In 2008, one hundred thirty-two new homes were built in Birmingham, down from two hundred thirty-two the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Birmingham are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and health care. The average travel time to work is about 24 minutes. More than 18.5% of Birmingham residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.6%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Birmingham is 12.5%, which is greater than Alabama's average of 10.7%.

The percentage of Birmingham residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 60.1%, is more than both the national and state average. Williams Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, Westminister Presbyterian Church and West End Methodist Church are all churches located in Birmingham. The most common religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.

Birmingham is home to the Mineral Park Municipal Golf Course and the Cooper Green Golf Course as well as Avondale Mills Park and Smithfield Historic District. Shopping malls in the area include Acipco Shopping Center, Altadena Square Shopping Center and Parkway East Huffman Shopping Center. Visitors to Birmingham can choose from Marriott Hotel Birmingham, Rime Garden Extended Stay Suites and Studioplus for temporary stays in the area.