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The Ministry Training Course

Who's it for?


The South West Gospel Partnership (SWGP) Ministry Training Course is a one-day-a-week course for those who want to understand the Bible better and be equipped to teach it to others. 

The course runs every Thursday, from 9.30am to 3.30pm at St. Bartholomew’s Church, Bath for 3 ten week terms. 

There is an optional second year which builds on what is learnt in the first year.

It is ideal for church workers and apprentices, preachers, gap-year students, youth and children's workers, home group leaders, women's workers and those in student ministry, indeed any who are actively involved in teaching the Bible and desire to be better equipped.  It is not restricted to those in paid Christian work, but is also suitable for those in retirement or who are able to take a day out from work on a Thursday.



Each week is divided into four main one hour sessions (with an optional extra at the end of the day):

Bible Overview

Looking at how God's Word fits together from Genesis to Revelation. We study a different biblical book each week and students are encouraged to prepare by reading through the book beforehand.


In-depth study of 6 Bible books from different genres, showing how to teach and apply them in the 21st century. In 2016-17 we were focusing on Genesis 1-11, Hebrews, Amos, John, Joshua, Revelation.

Gospel Ministry

Practical training from a range of experienced pastors and Bible teachers. Subjects include Christian leadership, Discipling, Personal Evangelism, Postmodernism, Islam and Apologetics.


A chance to gain experience in giving talks and leading Bible studies with feedback from ministers and preachers. After preparing passages in the first term, students practise giving talks or leading Bible studies in a group setting.

Hebrew (optional)

We learn Biblical Hebrew in an accessible and fun way - learning key words, basic grammar, memorising Bible verses and using songs.


We also have our British Museum Trip, as we spend a day seeing how archaeology supports the Bible and gives insight into the background of biblical events.


A typical day looks like this:


Fellowship Groups


09:50-10:00 Prayer and praise
10:00-11:05 Bible Overview
11.05-11.20 Coffee
11:20-12:30 Expositions
12:30-1:15 Lunch
1:15-2:15 Gospel Ministry
2.15-2.30 Coffee
2:30-3:30 Workshops
3:35-4:20 Hebrew (optional)



Charlie Ward is the course director. He studied at Oak Hill College before becoming Assistant Minister at St Bart's in Bath in 2006. He teaches the Bible Overview, Church History and a range of other subjects on the course.

Speakers who teach on the course include:

  • Rupert Bentley-Taylor - Isaiah, Judges
  • Spencer Shaw (Emmanuel Evangelical, Chippenham) - Exodus, Hebrews
  • Ian Lewis (St Bart’s, Bath) - Acts, Genesis 1-11, Postmodernism, Principles of Exposition
  • Ed Moll (St George’s, Wembdon) - Leading Bible Studies, The Biblical Canon, How to Give a Bible Talk
  • Doug Johnson (Yeovil) - Job
  • Roger Carswell - Personal evangelism
  • Mike Cain (Emmanuel, Bristol) - Prayer & Ministry
  • Isaac Shaw (Delhi Bible Institute) - Hinduism
  • Neil Todman (Headley Park, Bristol) - Church-planting
  • Michael Paton (Chippenham)- Islam

Term Dates


Term Dates 2019-20

 Autumn Term 2019       26 Sep - 5 Dec    (Half-term 31 Oct)

 Spring Term 2020         16 Jan - 26 March   (Half-term 20 Feb)

 Summer Term 2020      23 April - 9 July     (Half-term 28  May)      

Please note that there will be no MTC on 25th June 2020


Term Dates 2020 -21

 Autumn Term 2020       24 Sep - 3 Dec    (Half-term 29 Oct)

 Spring Term 2021         14 Jan - 25 March   (Half-term 18 Feb)

 Summer Term 2021      29 April - 15 July     (Half-term 3 June)      

Please note that there will be no MTC on 24th June 2021


'Taster' Day


If you are interested in finding out more about the Ministry Training Course, we hold a Taster Day each year. This is a great opportunity for prospective students to attend 3 sessions of a 'typical' day on the course. Lunch is provided, during which there will be a short talk by the Course Director. 

The next Taster Day is on Thursday, 12th March 2020, 9.45am - 2.15pm.                 

To book a place, please contact the Course administrator, Jane Clark: [email protected]




We are now welcoming applications for the Ministry Training Course 2019/20. The cost of the course is £200 per term.

For further information and an application form, please contact Jane Clark, the course administrator.