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Rick Warren and Saddleback Church partner with Vanguard to educate church planters

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Saddleback Church is partnering with Vanguard University to offer a Master of Theological Studies (MTS) through the Saddleback Leadership Academy. The new venture is designed to equip the next generation of church leaders. Saddleback Leadership Academy is a key element of Pastor Rick Warren’s 10-year vision to start culturally relevant churches in strategic cities around the world.

Students enrolled in the Saddleback Leadership Academy for a one-year internship may enroll in Vanguard University’s Graduate Religion Program and earn 18 of 48 units toward the MTS degree on site at Saddleback. They complete 30 units of theology on campus at Vanguard.

Vanguard Provost Jeff Hittenberger says: “Vanguard shares Saddleback’s Christ-centered vision. The MTS/Church Planting program offers students who have already earned their undergraduate degree a chance to prepare for ministry and earn their Master’s degree in just four semesters compressed into 15 months. A student starting the program in May 2012 can be finished by August 2013.”

The Saddleback Church Leadership Academy seeks to equip, empower, and encourage individuals to pursue their calling to church planting or ministry leadership. According to Dave Alford, Director of the Leadership Academy, “The partnership with Vanguard will allow us to offer future church ministry leaders thorough, practical training in an accelerated format. We’ll be able to get qualified leaders into ministry faster.”

For more information about Vanguard University, contact Kelly Kannwischer, Vice President for Advancement at 714-966-5451 or For more information about Vanguard University visit For more information about the Saddleback Leadership Academy visit

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3 Comments to "Rick Warren and Saddleback Church partner with Vanguard to educate church planters"

  1. Victor Zesati

    November 17, 2011

    I’m a graduate from Vanguard University with a MTS

  2. Joe

    March 1, 2012

    When can a student start the MTS/Church Planting program for 2012? I saw that it was mentioned for May?


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