Home Equipping Leaders Lay Ministry Certified Lay Minister

Certified Lay Minister

Laity have long been a part of ministry in Methodism. Lay preachers, exhorters, and class leaders have served the church since its earliest days. The certified lay minister is "called and equipped to conduct public worship, care for the congregation, assist in program leadership, develop new and existing faith communities, preach the word, lead small groups, or establish community outreach ministries as part of a ministry team with the supervision and support of a clergyperson.” (2016 BOD ¶268.1)

CLM Specializations

Nurses who are lay people, and who expect to remain lay people, may pursue the Certified Lay Ministry Parish Nurse specialization.

In partnership with the National Plan for Hispanic/Latino Ministries CLMs may now specialize as a NPHLM Lay Missioner.

Lay persons are also called to start new faith communities. In recognition of that, CLMs can now specialize as a lay missionary/church planter in partnership with Path 1/New Church Starts.

Laypersons who are engaged in children's ministry may now pursue credentialing as a Certified Lay Minister with a specialization in Children's Faith Formation in cooperation with the Office of Children's Ministries at Discipleship Ministries.

In partnership with the General Commission on United Methodist Men, Certified Lay Ministers can now specialize as a CLM with a Specialization as a Men's Ministry Specialist.

By utilizing the training excellence of The Caring Congregation for congregational care, CLMs can now specialize as a congregational care minister (CCM). The CLM will need to complete The Caring Congregation’s Congregational Care Ministry seminar/webinar training process in addition to their CLM training.

Additional Information

A CLM is a unique, recognized lay servant in the UMC. A CLM is intended for missional leadership in churches as part of a team ministry under the supervision of a clergyperson. As part of the historic continuation of lay leadership in our church, a CLM resembles earlier Exhorters, Class Leaders, Lay Preachers, and Missioners. CLMs are assigned by the District Superintendent and operate under a system of training, support, supervision and accountability. Learn more about how a CLM is different from other recognized ministers »

The ministry of the laity is key to church vitality and the fulfillment of the mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. DOWNLOAD an excerpt from the "Call to Action" on Lay Leadership research »

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