Certified Lay Ministry

A Certified Lay Minister (CLM) is a qualified United Methodist layperson called to congregational leadership as part of a ministry team under the supervision of a clergyperson. Paragraph 271 in the 2012 Book of Discipline explains Certified Lay Ministry, requirements, and service distinction.

A person wishing to become a CLM enters the certification process, which includes training, support, supervision, and accountability to the District Committee on Ordained Ministry. CLMs are laypeople serving out their call as disciples of Jesus Christ. They are neither full- nor part-time clergy.

According to ¶271 of the 2012 Book of Discipline, we have certified lay ministers in order to:

  • Enhance ministry in small-membership churches
  • Expand team ministry
  • Recognize the importance of the ministry of the laity, linking back to early Methodism.

Our Book Of Discipline tells us that a CLM:

  • Preaches the Word.
  • Provides care ministry.
  • Assists in program leadership.
  • Serves as a witness to the community.
Next Steps
If you feel called to Certified Lay Ministry, continue to pray in reflection and meet first with your local church Pastor. The next step is to be affirmed by your local Church Council. Then, request a meeting with your District Superintendent.

Forms for certification as a CLM include the following:

CLM1 – Certified Lay Minister Process CLM2 – Certification Process Checklist CLM3 – Recommendation Form CLM4 – Psychological Testing Process CLM5 – DCOM Interview Process CLM6 – District File Content Checklist CLM7 – Certified Lay Minister Annual Report