Conference Lay Minister (CLayM) Program

April 11, 2007

The Conference Lay Minister Program was developed by the California-Nevada Conference to strengthen the ministries of churches that are unable to support a salaried pastor. The program serves as an extended form of the Lay Speaking Program [Para. 205 (4), 2004 Book of Discipline]. Currently 10 United Methodist churches in three districts and a church in another denomination are being served by Conference Lay Ministers.

Conference Lay Minister

A Conference Lay Minister is a lay person who:

  • is mature in his or her faith, and has a strong self-image and good people skills;
  • is experienced in the workings of the United Methodist Church;
  • is willing to serve as a volunteer (without salary), doing everything in pastoral ministry – except administering the sacraments and providing counseling;
  • feels called and can afford to apply a significant period of time and his or her leadership abilities to a local church;
  • has been approved by his or her District Superintendent for the Conference Lay Minister Training course;
  • has completed the two-week Conference Lay Minister Training course;
  • has completed basic training as a local lay speaker;
  • has been assigned to serve a church by a District Superintendent.

Conference Lay Minister Training

Conference Lay Minister Training is two weeks of training that provides tools of ministry and an understanding of pastoral tasks. The first week of training is in October and the second is the week that includes the Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Observance in January.

The training includes:

The opportunity to discern one’s call and to determine the workability and suitability of serving as a Conference Lay Minister, plus ...

  • Bible Course Work
  • Basics of United Methodism
  • Christian Education
  • Church Administration
  • Community Involvement
  • Preaching and Worship

A graduate of Conference Lay Minister Training may be placed in a pool of CLayM graduates from which Conference Lay Ministers are selected by District Superintendents for assignment to a church. Other CLayM graduates may choose to remain in their present church, using their newly acquired skills to broaden and deepen their ministry in their local church.

Dates for the next two CLayM Training Weeks:
Monday, October 22-Friday, October 26, 2007 & Monday, January 21-Friday, January 25, 2008.

CONTACT: Perry W. Polk, Training Coordinator, 3012 Chestnut Court, Fairfield, CA 94533-1434; (707) 422-4595;