In 1983, the Pentecostal Church of God merged two collegiate institutions into one college in Joplin, Missouri, where the international headquarters of the church was located. Southern Bible College, located in Houston, Texas, and Evangelical Christian College, located in Fresno, California were closed and merged to form Messenger College in Joplin in 1987. The new college opened in new constructed facilities located in wooded acreage across from the international headquarters of the church.
In 2011, an EF-5 tornado destroyed the town of Joplin and, in response to the tragedy by opening its campus as a distribution center and volunteer housing location during the clean-up efforts. During the aftermath of the disaster, Mercy Health Systems approached the administration of Messenger College about building a new hospital on the campus to replace one destroyed by the tornado. The agreement allowed the school to relocate to its current campus in Euless, Texas in the Dallas/Fort Worth metro area.
Messenger College is the national higher education institution for the Pentecostal Church of God in the United States with a mission to educate ministers, missionaries, teachers and other professionals using a faith-based curriculum.
Messenger College Accreditation Details
Messenger College is accredited by the Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools. Accreditation indicates that an institute of higher learning meets the organization's requirements that indicate excellence in education. Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools is governed by the Council for Higher Education and the International Network for Quality Assurance Agencies in Higher Edcuation.
Messenger College Application Requirements
Both on-campus and online students must complete the same admission process in order to attend Messenger College. Students must complete an application form and provide an admissions essay. Two references are required as well as one recommendation. First time college students under the age of 25 must provide official ACT or SAT as well as official high school transcripts. Any students who have obtained college credits after high school must provide official transcripts from any college or university attended. All applicants must be high school graduates or have earned their GED and must have earned a "C" or better in all high school level courses. Home schooled students must have adequate grade records or documentation of earning a GED.
Tuition and Financial Aid
Full-time residential tuition at Messenger College is $250 per credit hour. Sports Academy students pay $2,400 for six to eight credit hours or $2,900 for nine to thirteen credit hours.
Financial aid is available and is based on financial need. Students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Students are eligible for the following financial aid:
- Federal Pell Grants
- Federal SEO Grants
- Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans
- Parent (PLUS) Loans
In addition to these forms of financial aid, Messenger College accepts veterans benefits as well.
Bachelor of Arts in Counseling
The Bachelor of Arts in Counseling is for students who wish to enter the counseling industry by providing them with the skills and knowledge necessary to accept leadership roles upon completion of the program. Students are able to demonstrate the major concepts in psychology and counseling while also acknowledging the Lordship of Christ over the personal lives of students and those they counsel. Students are able to accept challenges and opportunities of ministry while integrating principles of counseling into a biblical worldview. Graduates are able to articulate a relationship between psychology and faith in God as well as academic competence in order to prepare for advance study in the industry. Students are also provided knowledge and techniques of counseling through supervised field experiences.
Courses required to obtain the degree include:
- Academic Success
- Addictive Behavior & Recovery
- Advanced Counseling Methods & Social Work
- Advanced General Counseling
- American Government
- Behavioral Science Research
- Biblical Interpretation
- Christian Worldview
- Counseling Adult Population
- Counseling Children & Adolescents
- Crisis Intervention & Management
- English Comp 1 and 2
- Essentials of Leadership
- General Psychology
- Healthy Sexuality
- History of Pentecostal/Charismatic Movement
- Introduction to Counseling & Social Work
- Introduction to Philosophy
- Language 1 and 2
- Life of Christ
- Marriage & Family
- NT History & Literature
- OT History & Literature
- Pastoral Care & Counseling
- Person/Work of the Holy Spirit
- Spiritual Formation
- Survey of Church Ministries
- Theology 1 and 2
- Theology of Ministry
- Theories of Marriage & Family Counseling
Students are also required to complete electives in history, math, science and general education.
Graduates of the program are able to address unique challenges and adversity by providing mental health, behavioral or emotional assistance to those in need. Graduates are provided the skills and knowledge necessary to provide emotional support and recommend problem-solving approaches as well as relationship-building techniques. Students may be able to focus their profession on marriage and family, addiction, school guidance, mental health, nutrition or career assistance. Some counselors find positions in rehabilitation of those who may be suffering from disabilities, whether physical or mental.
The counseling field is growing, providing many opportunities for those who complete the program through Messenger College to find positions in their industry. The counseling field is also diverse so graduates are able to work with a wide variety of clients who are in need. Graduates have found employment in government and private industry as well as in academia, medical centers and outpatient facilities. Some provide services directly to clients through private practice while others may be employed in small organizations. Counselors may also work in clinical or medical settings with clients who are suffering from acute mental illness or recent trauma.
The Bachelor in Counseling program at Messenger College is rooted in a strong faith-based curriculum, connecting the mental health of clients with a strong Christian foundation. The program is available online so that students who face work, family or social obligations may achieve their higher education goals while still meeting their commitments. Along with accredited education, students are provided an education that focuses on Christian beliefs as well as the need for those who are mentally ill to receive the assistance they need.