Lay ministry is at the core of every church. There is plenty of work to do. Every job is important and every job is a personal ministry. From teaching Sunday School, singing in the choir, helping in the nursery and preparing food for church receptions, to serving as liturgists, on committees, (doing) evangelism, leading Bible studies, ushering, caring for church property, handling the church’s money and the hundred other jobs that we do, the laity serve God in big and small ways. Lay Servant ministries (or Christ Servant Ministries in the Eastern PA Conference) revolve around three broad categories that combine words with deeds to serve the church and the community: Caring, Leading and Communicating. We must have laity who show compassion to all, who are trained to lead and eager to learn, and who can express their faith in Christ in meaningful ways through words and deeds.
Partially adapted from a description by Bill Knobles, Certified Lay Minister, Florida Conference, UMC (www.layministryfumc.com)
Laity Message to Local ChurchesFrom Your Faithful Conference & District Lay Leaders:
The Laity consists of all members who are not part of the Clergy.
The Book of Disciple ¶ 127 says: The ministry of the Laity flows from a commitment to Christ's outreaching love. Lay members of The United Methodist Church are, by history and calling, active advocates of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Every layperson is called to carry out the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20); every layperson is called to be missional.
What is the role of the Laity in the church? Learn more.
Christ Servant Ministries
Christ Servant Ministries programs are available to United Methodists in the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference and provide opportunities that promote serving, training, and recognition of laity who lead, speak, and care about others. Learn more about Christ Servant Minstry and Certified Lay Ministry in our Conference at the Eastern PA Christ Servant Ministries Website.
Certified Lay Ministry
Certified Lay Ministers (CLMs) serve in local churches providing assistance to pastors. Sometimes, they are assigned by a district superintendent to provide pastoral leadership in small congregations. The idea of laity serving as lay preachers, exhorters, and class leaders goes back to the early day of Methodism. CLMs preach the Word, provide care for the congregation, assist in program leadership, and serve as witnesses in the community to further the growth and mission. They are usually a part of a ministry team with the supervision and support of a clergy person.
William "Bill" Thompson
Conference Lay Leader