Lay Servant Ministries

Lay Servants are to serve the local church or charge in any way in which their witness or leadership and service inspires the laity to deeper commitment to Christ and more effective discipleship. This includes the interpretation of scriptures, doctrine, organization, and ministries of the church.   The United Methodist Church has established three categories for laypersons in the area of lay servant ministries to develop, prepare, and engage principled Christian leaders for the mission of making disciples for the transformation of the world:  
  • Certified Lay Servant—A certified lay servant serves the local church or charge (and/or beyond) and provides program leadership, assistance, and support.; leads meetings for prayer, training, study, and discussion; conducts, or assists in conducting, services of worship, preaches the Word, or gives addresses; provides congregational and community leadership and fosters caring ministries; assists in the distribution of the elements of Holy Communion; teaches the Scriptures, doctrine, organization, and ministries of The United Methodist Church.
  • Certified Lay Speaker—A certified lay speaker serves by preaching the Word when requested by the pastor, district superintendent, or committee on lay servant ministries in accordance and compliance with The Book of Discipline.
  • Certified Lay Minister (CLM)—A certified lay minister serves as part of a ministry team with the supervision and support of a clergyperson. conducts public worship; cares for the congregation; develops new faith communities; preaches the Word; leads small groups; establishes outreach ministries; serves as a class leader; assists in program leadership; engages in specialized ministries after appropriate training such as in parish nursing, church planting, men’s ministry, children’s faith formation, congregational care, and more.