Dual Career - Nursing and Ministry

by misskait misskait (New) New

My question or topic in general is related to nursing and ministry.

I recently graduated with my BS and got hired after 10 months (patience tester!) into a Magnet Hospital. I am so excited to start there, it's on one of their specialized ICUs, and I couldn't be happier.

Another passion of mine though has been Christian ministry. I was involved in student leadership throughout high school, and even took this past year after graduation to invest in part-time ministry while searching for my first RN job.

Have any of you pursued both nursing and ministry, and what did that look like? What about nursing and seminary? I in no way plan to give up nursing, but rather see both my passions as two that can grow simultaneously. I would love to continue getting RN experience full-time, while taking part-time seminary classes on the side.

I know many people say I could just work as an RN and volunteer in my church, but I really see my heart aching to do both and be equally as flexible with both (i.e. be able to transition from full-time nursing to full-time ministry, or any full-time/part-time combination of both as God leads me).

Any thoughts on this combination of work in general?

Esme12, ASN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care, ED, Cath lab, CTPAC,Trauma. Has 42 years experience. 4 Articles; 20,908 Posts

Welcome to AN! The largest online nursing community!

moved to nursing and spirituality for improved response



10 Posts

I've thought about nursing and bivocational ministry in the Episcopal Church. I've felt that I've had "multiple vocation syndrome" most of my life (my own term). Still discerning.



Specializes in Care Coordination, MDS, med-surg, Peds. Has 22 years experience. 617 Posts

I would think it is very possible combination. Parish nursing, missionary work, Doctors without Borders, etc., as well as hospice. many possibilities and just useage in daily nursing practice. Best wishes!



Specializes in Nephrology. Has 28 years experience. 143 Posts

I have been an RN for 23 years, and work full time. I will finish this summer a Masters degree in Theology that I have been doing online. I have no plans to go into professional ministry, I took my Masters because it is a topic that I am passionate about and just wanted to learn more. I serve as Chair of the Board at my church as well as Chair of the Deacons'. I will forever be a nurse but have thoroughly enjoyed my studies for my Masters. When I told one of the doctors I work with that I was going to do it she looked at me and said "I think it will be awesome to have someone with that kind of skill set around here" (I work in a busy outpatient clinic). If you are interested in seminary courses I say go for it. Happy to answer any questions if you have any.



116 Posts

Wow I so envy you. Nursing in and of itself is a ministry of compassion selflessness and love. Good luck in your endeavors! What an awesome path to take.

tnbutterfly - Mary, BSN, RN

Specializes in Peds, Med-Surg, Disaster Nsg, Parish Nsg. 154 Articles; 5,900 Posts

I am a parish nurse and find this to be a wonderful way to blend nursing and ministry.



Specializes in Med-Surg, Peds, Ortho, LTC and MORE. 219 Posts

Been bi vocational many many years.... RN and Ordained Minister....has been a great experience for me.... I have worked in Peds, Med/Surg, ICU, Hospice and LTC ... have given many a sermon at nursing homes, especially at Holiday Times, and officiated at many weddings ( in fact I have 4000 weddings "under my belt"). Comforted patients and families.... and saved my sanity from "THOSE DAYS" at work.

I pondered the calling...I took that leap of faith....and happy I am I answered the call.

Blessings on you and your choices in front of you. I know you will be great either way your choose.



4 Posts

Thank you all for the encouragement! With the demands of full-time nursing as well as the demands of seminary, I wouldn't ever want to stretch myself too thin, but your comments and advice have been very helpful and encouraging! Seems like it may be time for me to take a step of faith :shy:



1,026 Posts

i know time management could be an issue however, if you are in the ministry, the Lord will give you wisdom how to handle things!


Specializes in Emergency Room and Mental Health. 1 Article; 5 Posts

Having a personal relationship with God will or should, shine through you without a word.. Meaning, in a secular nursing job, the way you care for your patient and their family will show to all who come in contact with you. God has opened the way on many occasions for me to share my faith. I knew I was not to talk about it on my own initiative. This is stipulated in the hospital orientation. So I made sure that I never let the Lord down in my actions or manner. Many people who watched me at work in the Emergency department would comment, "you're a Christian aren't you?" and I would simply answer "yes." Occasionally a Patient would ask me for a Bible verse as manyhave a Gideon Bible in their bedside lockers. At these times I opened their Bible at Psalm 91 and handed it back saying, "I am not permitted to talk about this, so you read and keep this for it for yourself. Ask God to open the way, and He will.

HappyWife77, BSN, RN

Specializes in Gerontology RN-BC and FNP MSN student. Has 22 years experience. 739 Posts

I have the same desires as far as being in full time ministry...but i feel God has called me to be a nurse. That in of itself is a ministry like no other. I know I am in Gods perfect will which is pleasing and sweet to my soul. My cry is for God to use me as an instrument, and he does that by me being a nurse. There are plenty of times when working as a nurse I am lead to minister in different ways as the spirit of God leads me.Loving on Him and being close and intimate with the Father is my whole hearts desire. Best wishes in all that you do, may everything you touch prosper.