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How to Become a Minister in Illinois
Ministers work for churches providing a variety of services including teaching, presiding over biblical instruction, visiting prisons and shelters to counsel individuals and providing counseling services to members of their congregation. While some churches require their ministers to be ordained, others do not require this. Ministers can also be licensed or unlicensed. If you reside in the state of Illinois, which has no state regulation regarding the license of ministers, you can become a minister by undergoing a few simple steps.
Join a church. Consult with your church's pastor or bishop about your desire to become a minister. Take a Bible course that is approved by your pastor or denomination, or enroll in seminary school.
Complete the application to be a licensed minister and have your application fee available. Ask members of your church to provide letters of recommendation.
Ask your minister to submit your application to the church's licensing board or other entity responsible for issuing licenses. Wait to receive your ID card and your license.
Contact your county clerk if you wish to perform wedding ceremonies. Ask what the registration fee is in your county, along with any other ordination policies.
If you wish to officiate weddings in Illinois, you must possess a valid minister's license.
If you are an ordained minister, you can officiate weddings in the state of Illinois.
Online minister courses can also be taken and are administered by the American Fellowship Church.
Consider becoming a member of the American Fellowship Church if you wish to be an ordained minister. Apply for a license after reading the organizations code of ethics (see Resources). Decide if you wish to apply for a one-year, five-year or a lifetime license. Contact the organization at least once a year while a member and provide the organization with updates of your address or name.
Leonard Dozier is a freelance writer based in southern New Jersey and New York. His film and sports columns have been published by "Casino Connection Magazine" and Trev Rogers sports respectively. A prolific and extremely versatile writer, he is an ASCAP songwriter and has written screenplays and stage plays registered with the Writer's Guild of America.