posted on July 22
Understanding your role as Lay Leader of your local churchAs a Lay Leader of your local church, you may be wondering about your role. If you are in need of more information in understanding your role, you will find two resources of help. Speak with your pastor or check your church library for a copy of the Book of Discipline. The role of a Lay Leaders is defined in paragraph 251. This includes participation as a member of several important committees or teams for your congregation. Also, the Guidelines booklet from Cokesbury titled "Lay Leader / Lay Member" can be helpful to you. The Conference website offers some resources as well under the Laity Leadership tab. Below is an excerpt from some of the materials provided by the Conference Lay Ministry Team.
Leadership - Activities
While your actual work as Lay Leader will develop out of your individual gifts, calling, and passion, in collaboration with your Pastor, here are some specific ideas to enhance your effectiveness:
- Model a partnership with the Pastor, meeting regularly with him or her.
- Be positive and focused on the main thing ("the mission"): making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.
- Relate effectively to the congregation and other local leaders.
- Attend Training for Lay Leadership Development and Lay Servant Ministries.
- Encourage teamwork between the Pastor and lay leadership.
- Work to strengthen the relationship between the Pastor and the congregation.
- Communicate with the District Lay Leaders periodically.
- Meet with Lay Leaders from other congregations and promote the sharing of good ideas.
- Attend at least 2 learning events in the District or Conference per year.
- Read Parts II and III of the Discipline (pp. 43-90 in 2012 version) to become familiar with our Doctrine, Theology, and the Mission & Ministry of the Church.
- Inspire and motivate the congregation to move in an outward, evangelical focus. Set an example by being involved in the community yourself.
- Promote good ideas with leaders of committees and teams.
- Organize learning/spiritual events for laity, or see that they are organized.
- Communicate the joy and synergism of serving Christ together.
- Focus longer-term to see the bigger picture.
- Practice excellent communication skills - both spoken and written.
- Work with the Pastor to identify committed lay persons who may be called to leadership in the congregation's ministry and help develop them as leaders.
Click here to see the Conference Lay Leader's blog: Amy Thompson, MO Conference Lay Leader
- Missouri Conference Website, www.momethodist.org
- The United Methodist Church, www.umc.org
- Discipleship Ministries of UMC, www.umcdiscipleship.org
- Lewis Center for Church Leadership, www.churchleadership.com