From the Foreward:
In the past two decades since the Preparation for Ministry process was formalized in the Book of Order, there have been significant changes in society and in the church. We now have more women in seminary than men. More than two thirds of our inquirers and candidates are second or third career people. At the same time, the pastoral leadership needs of the church have changed. Over 5,000 congregations have membership of less than 100. About 1,700 of these congregations have installed pastors. Another 1,600 of these congregations are without any pastoral leadership. The church has a critical need for pastoral leaders who can do new church development, or youth ministry, or serve small membership congregations, multicultural congregations, and racial ethnic congregations.