Class Leader in Covenant Discipleship Job Description

Updated September 2016

Result Expected

Historically, class leaders provided lay pastoral leadership in the weekly class meetings, which were the practical means of Christian formation in the early years of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Today, there is a revival of the office through Covenant Discipleship. An effective class leader has skills for lay pastoral ministry (see spiritual gifts below).

Spiritual Gifts and Qualifications Helpful for the Job

A class leader possesses one or more of these spiritual gifts: servanthood, teaching, exhortation (encouragement), leadership, administration, helping, and shepherding. This leader must participate in a Covenant Discipleship group. The process of weekly accountability and support for living the Christian life, shaped by the General Rule of Discipleship, equips the person to help others witness to Jesus Christ in the world and follow his teachings through acts of compassion, justice, worship, and devotion under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

Useful skills for this position are the ability to listen to and communicate with people of all ages, work with other ministry leaders, delegate responsibility, and follow up to complete tasks.

Responsibilities of the Position

  • A class leader needs to meet weekly in a Covenant Discipleship group.
  • Leaders develop a plan for regular contact with class members to help them grow in discipleship. This might be through regular telephone calls, text messages, social media, letters, and personal visits.
  • The class leader interprets and encourages class members to apply the General Rule of Discipleship in their daily lives: To witness to Jesus Christ in the world, and to follow his teachings through acts of compassion, justice, worship, and devotion under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
  • The class leader should be familiar with resources to support class members as they find help for their practice of acts of compassion, justice, worship, and devotion.
  • The class leaders meet monthly with the pastor to keep the pastor informed of their ministry. This is also an opportunity for the pastor to provide encouragement and training to the class leaders.
  • The class leader is accountable to the pastor and the charge conference through the leadership team.

Getting Started

  1. If you are not already part of a Covenant Discipleship group, you should join one or form one as soon as possible.
  2. If your congregation is launching Covenant Discipleship, visit with the pastor and other leaders to understand their hopes about ways this ministry will fulfill the mission of the church and their hopes for your leadership. Study resource materials for launch ideas. Gather a group of interested people to help you plan.
  3. Work with other ministry leaders in your congregation to develop a list of suggestions for class members.

People and Agencies That Can Help

  • Your pastor, class leaders in your congregation and other congregations with an active Covenant Discipleship ministry. As you travel, seek out congregations with active Covenant Discipleship groups and visit with class leaders.
  • Steve Manskar, smanskar@UMCdiscipleship.org, Discipleship Ministries, P. O. Box 340003, Nashville, TN 37203-0003; 877-899-2780; www.umcdiscipleship.org/covenantdiscipleship
  • InfoServ, the information service for the church, provides current information about United Methodist resources, programs, and staff services. Email: infoserv@umcom.org; Website: infoserv.umc.org.

Web and Print Resources

Categories: Local Church Officer Job Descriptions, Suggested Church Positions