By Steven Zuraff

Do you feel called and want to be a leader and serve your local church and community? Artios Christian College will help you succeed!

Hi, my name is Steven, and I’d like to tell you about my experience as a student of Artios Christian College. I started my training by driving with my wife in 2006 to attend a summer session in Denver, CO when it was called Ministerial Training System (MTS). Quite a large number of brothers traveled to Denver for training that summer.

My wife served with other ladies in the kitchen of the Denver church preparing lunch and dinner each day. We spent two weeks in intense training provided by Elders Calvin Burrell, the late Richard Wiedenheft, and Whaid Rose, along with other capable men. MTS had not been around very long at this time, and everyone was learning, including our instructors who were planning and building the foundation of what has become Artios Christian College today. The school was in its infancy at this time.


The summer session piqued my interest and curiosity. I decided to enroll as a student in a few future courses, not really knowing where it would eventually lead me. MTS had regional face-to-face classes, and the nearest classroom from my home in Central Oklahoma was Ft Smith, Arkansas. So, I traveled 150 miles every other Sunday from Central Oklahoma to Ft Smith, Arkansas with several brothers to attend classes. We would leave before daylight to get to class on time. It was about a three-hour trip going and three hours coming home.

A class I was taking with Elder Max Morrow in 2010 required a week of in-classroom training at Spring Vale Academy (now, Spring Vale Christian School). A number of us students traveled together to be in attendance. We had a lot of classroom interaction and discussion as we made new friends and studied together. As MTS was transitioning, classes came to an end at Ft Smith. For a brief period of time, I took a break from studies, but at some point I went online to take the courses I needed to finish and receive a diploma.


At this point I had decided to work toward a Diploma of Pastoral Ministry. The course work was now college level. It was a real challenge for this old timer but rewarding. Each course along the way allowed me to meet and interact with other students from across the country and able teachers like Israel Steinmetz, John Lemley, and a number of others.

Student interaction was very beneficial for all of us, and the fellowship was sweet. We became friends as we studied and learned together. Our interaction helped us all to grow spiritually in life and ministry. I finished my training in 2013 receiving a Diploma of Pastoral Ministry. By then the name had changed from Ministerial Training System to LifeSpring School of Ministry. I am thankful and blessed to have been able to attend.


Serving in a local church and being involved in Christian leadership began for me when I was in my 20’s in the 1970’s. It started with leading a young adult singles group in my local church. Over the years as I moved to different parts of the country and attended other local churches, opportunities began to become available to serve in leadership. I was elected to serve on church boards as a deacon and as an elder. I received opportunities and taught adult classes and presented sermons from the pulpit.

By the time an opportunity came along for formal training, I had been serving as a leader in local churches a long time. But I still saw the training as something I needed and believed it would benefit me in ministry, which it has. Currently my wife and I visit two local churches in Oklahoma and one in Little Rock, Arkansas, which are without a pastor, to present a message and serve the brethren as needed.

Even though I have been involved in local church leadership and ministry for many years, the training from Artios Christian College helped me to become a better servant leader. It has added to and impacted my ministry and still does today. It really validated and enhanced my ministry. I am blessed and have benefited greatly to have had the opportunity to attend and train for ministry with Artios.


What about you? What are your plans and goals for the future? Are you interested in Christian leadership training and discovering and improving your skills? You may want to consider attending Artios Christian College. Artios has a dedicated staff to help you with your decision. Do you feel called and want to be a leader and serve your local church and community? Artios and their dedicated staff will be glad to help you succeed in meeting your goals.

Or if you’re like me and have been leading and serving in your local church for years already and want to better yourself and improve your personal skills, Artios can help you with that, too. From taking a few individual courses for personal enrichment to earning a certificate or graduating with a degree, Artios Christian College is ready and available to help you.

Artios Christian College may just be what you are looking for at a price much lower than other institutions. From it’s infancy it has grown into a valuable asset of the Church of God (Seventh Day). Artios prepares men and women students for Christian leadership and to serve in ministry within the church and in their communities. Think about it. Pray about it. Artios Christian College is an option available to you. I encourage you to consider Artios Christian College.