My former pastor, Dr Stanley Jebb has written an article on training men for ministry in the local church which is now available on the Evangelicals Now website.
He has long been a proponent of training in the context of a local church rather than sending people off to Bible college, and ran a “ministry training institute” along these lines for many years at West Street Baptist church in Dunstable. During that time many pastors and missionaries were trained at our church. I have always felt slightly disappointed that this work came to an end before I had the opportunity to benefit from it, and I have been surprised that I have not come across similar schemes anywhere else.
I am inclined to agree that the local church is the best place for training people for ministry. As he says in the article, it is a better context for getting people involved in practical service and also ensuring that the character and devotional aspects of training are prioritised. I am still in contact with many of the people trained by Dr Jebb and can vouch for the high standard of excellence that the training produced.
Perhaps the article will inspire some churches to begin to run similar programmes. I think it would be of great benefit to the body of Christ if they did.