Highest standards

The NACBA’s CCA designation helps professionals expand their education and remain on the forefront of church administration.

The mission of the National Association of Church Business Administration (NACBA) is about developing professionalism, which is spelled out in the mission statement: “ … to serve the church by promoting the highest level of professional competence in individuals serving Christ through administration in local churches.”

The Certified Church Administrator (CCA) certification program was created in 1959 to develop professionalism in church administration. The program began with the creation of the Professional Training and Standards committee (PT&S).

The goal of the program, as with most professional associations, is to certify that full-time experienced church administration professionals have demonstrated competence and professionalism in the field of church administration.

We certify church administration professionals who demonstrate the competence and professionalism to be the best professional in the field of church administration.

Four weeks of training
Candidates demonstrate their competence and professionalism by completing four weeks of training through a certification center and completing a major project paper in the area of church administration that adds knowledge and competence to our field.

Certification Centers are accredited by the PT&S Committee after going through a minimum period of “Provisional Status” for two cycles of Seminars I and II. Certification Centers will be at accredited seminaries and colleges or universities with graduate religious faculty (see sidebar).

Training needs
An accredited NACBA Certification Center will enter into a relationship with NACBA and agree to these guidelines. The centers provide a product and service to NACBA and are not part of the decision-making process of NACBA. The centers are competitors for meeting training needs and should not be pitted against each other in meetings or other forums. Each Center Director attends the PT&S meeting prior to each annual conference and other retreats and meetings as requested.

The purpose of the NACBA Conference Continuing Education Credit Program is to set the standards whereby participants of workshops, keynotes and seminars at the annual NACBA conference can receive CE credits under the auspices of the PT&S Committee.

To qualify for CE credit, the workshop or seminar topic will be from among those covered in the domains of knowledge of NACBA. To qualify for CE credit, the presenter(s) of the workshop or seminar will be acknowledged or experienced experts in the area of the topic. Topics and the qualification of presenter(s) is coordinated and approved through the national NACBA office. A CE credit will be granted to persons who properly register and attend one contact hour. One contact hour is defined as a minimum of 50 minutes of lecture, presentation or discussion on the topic by the approved presenter(s). An additional 0.1 CE Credit will be granted for each additional 50. Contact time of less than 50 minutes cannot be granted partial credit.
For complete information and guidelines, which must be followed exactly to ensure the quality and consistency of the program, visit www.nacba.net/Pages/CEUs.aspx.

After people become Certified Church Administrators they will be required to demonstrate continued lifelong learning in the field of church management in order to retain the designation of CCA. Individuals must meet the retention requirements in order to continue use of the CCA designation. Those who do not meet the requirement will receive a letter of instruction to cease using the designation.

I was certified in 2000 and the certification process was one of the best professional programs I have completed. I really enjoyed the people I met in the process and the project was hard work, but very rewarding. The continuing education and training programs at the annual National Conference have kept me on the forefront of the church administration profession and inspired me to be the best church administrator I can be.

Ron Newhouse is chair of NACBA PT&S, pastor of administration, First United Methodist Church, Graham, TX, chaplain, USN, LCDR, CO of MEFRELPAC DET A, Houston, TX and a Dave Ramsey Certified Financial Counselor.  www.nacba.net/Pages/Education.aspx

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Recent participant encourages others

When I was called into the ministry of church administration in 2004, I had an undergraduate degree in management, an MBA in finance and 25 years of corporate finance and operations experience. The combination of education and experience provided a firm foundation for church administration.

However, I needed something that would provide a bridge from the corporate world to church ministry. The CCA certification process provided this bridge. It also provided professional recognition for advanced training in church administration.

The certification process had a two-fold impact on my work. First, it gave me a different perspective on operations and financial management. It enhanced the realization that my work now had eternal significance. Second, the certification classes and subsequent continuing education coursework created a network of church administrators from around the country.

My first piece of advice to others considering the certification is to start the process now. My second piece of advice is to work through the process one step at a time. Resist the temptation to look at the process in its entirety as it could be overwhelming.

My final piece of advice is to realize that you are not in this alone. Your senior pastor, spouse, friends, fellow administrators, and even the NACBA staff are all available to encourage you and help you through the process. All you have to do is ask!

Roger P. Young, business administrator, North Avenue Presbyterian Church, Atlanta, GA. www.napc.org

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NACBA Certification Centers

CCA certification is available at five different centers throughout the U.S. You must complete sessions I-A and 1-B, as well as sessions II-A and II-B, to receive certification. Certification dates vary from center to center.  www.nacba.net

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