Certified Lay Minister
Certified Lay Minister (CLM)
The 2004 General Conference of the United Methodist Church authorized
the creation of a Certified Lay Minister, (CLM)2008 Book of Discipline-271)
The General Board of Discipleship and the General Board of Higher Education and
Ministry have worked together to develop the basic coursework to prepare for this
form of ministry. Each conference has a team that worked together with the Bishop and cabinet to develop a policy, and start the training process for this lay ministry.
After approval from the Pastor, District Superintendent and DCOM, classes can be scheduled
A Certified Lay Minister is a qualified United Methodist layperson called to be a part of a ministry team under the supervision of a clergyperson. This person is a Certified Lay Speaker* who after consultation with their pastor feels the need for more ministry training and responsibility.
The required coursework for CLM has four modules:
1. Call and Covenant for Ministry
Description: Understanding of theology and call for ministry, exploring spiritual gifts,
and developing a ministry covenant.
2. The Practice of Ministry
Description: Four sections; leading worship, preaching/sharing faith, discipleship
ministries, and caring for a congregation.
3. Organization of Ministry
Description: Focus on the leader’s task of organizing a congregation for mission and
Ministry. It provides specific guidelines on topics central to a
4. Connection for Ministry
Description: United Methodist Theology, practice and polity are explained with
the roles of the local congregation district, conference, and general
This coursework is not intended to compare with traditional training, such as certified lay speaking schools/courses, licensing school, course of study or seminary. It is designed to prepare a Lay person for effective pastoral service as part of a ministry team that will include a Supervising Pastor.
The Certified Lay Minister is not clergy and should not be addressed as such.
*Refer to Discipline
Lord, open the eyes of my heart that I may see clearly
the hope that I have been called to in Christ.
In You, my future is secured!
Make me ever aware of His inheritance and
His incomparable great power that are mine as I believe.