Training Resources for Lay Servants

Explanation of Courses

The Basic Course in Lay Servant Ministries: The Basic Course prepares participants to request recognition as Local Church Lay Servants.  The course introduces the three foundational focus areas of Lay Servant Ministries: Caring Ministries, Christian Leadership and Communications. The Basic Course is available in English, Spanish and Korean languages.

The Basic Refresher Course in Lay Servant Ministries: Completion of the four-hour Refresher Course is required every three years in order to retain recognition as a Local Church Lay Servant.  Each District tailors the Refresher Course to its needs by selecting two of five modules covering information that Christian leaders need to know to be most effective.

APPROVED ADVANCED COURSES (Required to become or remain a Certified Lay Servant Minister): Advanced Courses in Lay Servant Ministries that are approved for use by The General Board of Discipleship.

Lay Servants are Accountable Disciples

This course focuses on the concept of the household of God, the importance of Scripture, Wesleyan understandings of grace and the importance of the office of Class Leader in the development of the Methodist movement.  Participants learn to consider their own congregations in light of what it means to be a genuine Christian Community.

Lay Servants are Servant Leaders

Lay Servants learn principles and models of servant leadership and their practical application in the decision-making processes of their local congregations.  The purposes of this course are: 1) To develop an understanding of servant leadership and the types of power that occur between leaders and followers; 2) To acquire the tools and skills necessary to act as a servant leader; 3) To increase one's capacity to deal with differences and to handle conflict while in a leadership role.

Lay Servants Create Disciple-Making Faith Communities

The goal of this course is to provide church leaders with key tools and principles that can be used to create faith communities engaged in the vital ministry of making disciples of Jesus Christ.  Lay Servants will learn about discipleship systems, the term "faith community" and how the theory of displacement affects their congregations.  They will also consider the realities of a call to leadership, modern structures for ministry and new opportunities for ministry.

Lay Servants Cultivate Christian Community

Lay Servants will learn what it means to live as Christian disciples in the groups they lead and to work with others to help them grow.  There is a focus on nurturing caring connections and relationships that reflect the love of Christ.

Discover Spiritual Gifts

This course focuses on acquiring a better understanding of the congregation and its ministry needs, learning what it means to be a minister, doing the work of Christ in the church and in the world and being more fully equipped to lead others in exploring and using their spiritual gifts.

Lay Servants Grow Spiritually through Daily Discipline

Participants are guided in discerning God's direction for their lives, practicing daily disciplines and reaching out in love.

Lay Servants Interpret to Others Our United Methodist Heritage

Lay Servants are helped to gain an understanding of the distinctive traditions and emphases of The United Methodist Church.  Included are background on the Wesleys, the denominations that have blended to become today's church and our focus on personal piety and social ministries.

Lay Servants Lead Bible Study

This course will assist Lay Servants in becoming caring and effective facilitators, covering group dynamics, discussion leadership and use of reference materials.

Lay Servants Lead in Evangelism

Participants learn how to share their faith by telling and by doing.  This course helps Lay Servants see themselves as Christians with a vital faith to share with others.

Justice in Everyday Life

Discover the power of inspiring others to a deeper commitment to Christ and to more faithful discipleship. Modeled after the callings of the United Methodist Social Principles, this course delves into issues surrounding our faith and how it is practiced. The course encourages Lay Servants to thoughtfully and candidly examine the Social Principles, learning how to create and expand a support network, deepen the practice of Wesley's means of grace, form and nurture partnerships and create a climate of hospitality.