Levels of Certification in
Lay Servant Ministries
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CERTIFIED LAY SERVANT
The Certified Lay Servant is committed to scripture, the doctrine, heritage, organization and life of The United Methodist Church. They have received specific training to witness to the Christian faith through spoken communication, to lead within a church and community, and to provide caring ministry. A Certified Lay Servant must be a professing member of a local church or charge or baptized participant of recognized United Methodist collegiate ministry.
To become a Certified Lay Servant, you must:
- Obtain recommendation from the pastor and church council or charge conference in which you hold membership.
- Complete the Introduction to Lay Servant Ministries: The BASIC Course.
- Complete an advanced lay servant ministries course.
- Apply to and have qualifications reviewed by the district committee on lay servant ministries.
To maintain Certified Lay Ministry status, you must:
- Submit an annual report and renewal application to the charge conference or church council and to the district committee on lay servant ministries giving evidence of satisfactory performance as a Certified Lay Servant.
- Obtain recommendation for renewal from the pastor and church council or charge conference of the local church or other UM ministry you hold membership.
- Complete a lay servant ministries advanced course every three years.
CERTIFIED LAY SPEAKER
The Certified Lay Speaker serves by preaching the Word when requested by the pastor, district superintendent, or committee on lay servant ministries. A certified lay speaker is a certified lay servant whose call has been affirmed by the conference committee on lay servant ministries to serve in the church in pulpit supply. (See The Book of Discipline of The United Methodist Church ¶341.1)
To become a Certified Lay Speaker, you must:
- Be a Certified Lay Servant.
- Obtain recommendation from the pastor and church council or charge conference of the local church in which you hold membership.
- Complete a course of study including courses on leading worship, leading prayer, discovering spiritual gifts, preaching, United Methodist heritage, and polity, and/or other courses as determined by the conference committee on lay servant ministries.
- Interview with and obtain recommendation from the district committee on lay servant ministries for approval and certification. District interview deadlines differ. Final approval will be done at the Annual Conference Lay Servant Ministry Director meeting. Please check with your district committee chair for dates.
To maintain as a Certified Lay Speaker, you must:
- Submit an annual report and renewal application to the charge conference or church council and to the district committee on lay servant ministries giving evidence of satisfactory performance as a certified lay speaker
- Obtain recommendation for continued recognition as a certified lay speaker from the pastor and church council or charge conference of the local church or other United Methodist ministry in which you hold membership. Complete a lay servant ministries advanced course in the last three years.
- In the last three years, have been interviewed and obtained recommendation for renewal as a certified lay speaker from the district committee on lay servant ministries and approval of the conference committee on lay servant ministries for recertification.
CERTIFIED LAY MINISTER
If you are interested in becoming a Certified Lay Minister, please contact your district superintendent or district and conference committee on lay servant ministries.
Central Bay: Merry Henderson
East Winds: Kristen LePalm & Deb Sturm
Greater Detroit: Sharon Appling
Greater Southwest: Dana Tipken
Heritage: Anne Marie Hanna & Colleen Croxall
Mid-Michigan: Randy Coller
Midwest: Sara Wolfsen
Northern Skies: Liane Callow
Northern Waters: Janet Ball & Colleen Wierman
Growing in your faith
Lay Servant Ministries is one of the significant lay leadership development programs available within the United Methodist connection. Through this system of equipping and empowering, lay servants have the opportunity to grow as disciples of Jesus Christ who then go and make other disciples. Lay Servant ministries can be a significant component of any discipleship system providing training in Hospitality, Offer Christ, Purpose and Engagement.
Chuck Knows Church | Certified Lay Minister
Certified Lay Minister Overview
A Certified Lay Minister (CLM) is called and equipped to preach the Word, conduct public worship, care for the congregation, develop faith communities, lead small groups, or establish community outreach ministries as part of a ministry team with the supervision and support of a clergyperson. Much like a class leader in early Methodism, the Certified Lay Minister enhances the quality of ministry to small-membership churches as part of a circuit or cooperative parish or by expanding team ministry in other churches and charges. As with lay ministry in early Methodism, the certified lay minister expresses his or her gifts as evidence of God’s grace.
A CLM is a layperson certified for intentional leadership and assigned by the District Superintendent to a congregation or ministry. A CLM does not replace clergy — but works with clergy so that the congregation has the leadership necessary for vital mission and ministry. They must be part of a ministry team. (Adapted from the Certified Lay Ministry Guidelines 2017, by Discipleship Ministries)
Becoming a Certified Lay Minister
You must be a Certified Lay Servant and Certified Lay Speaker before continuing on to the CLM process. Please see the Lay Servant Ministries page for more information.
The MIUMC CLM process can be downloaded here.
Certified Lay Minister Application
Certified Lay Minister Annual Report &
Certified Lay Minister Classes~CLM modules are scheduled as needed. Contact your District Director of Lay Servant Ministries.~
A list of all CLM Classes available in Michigan. Find one that fits your schedule and location.
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