LAGR Lay Servant Ministry

The LaGrange District has a very active Lay Servant program, led by Mrs. Allison Jones, District Director of Lay Servant Ministries. Below are dates for upcoming Lay Servant classes and events.  Brochures and registration forms for classes will be mailed to all pastors and current lay speakers at least one month prior to the start of the class.  Watch the website for more details.

March 4 & 18, 2017 at Warren Temple UMC, LaGrange.  Basic, advanced and refresher courses will be offered at this 2-day session, 9am - 3pm.  Advanced courses offered will be "From Your Heart to Theirs: Delivering an Effective Sermon" (Preaching course) and "Transforming Evangelism: (UM Heritage course).  Check back for more details and watch for brochures to be mailed in January.

August 3, 10, 17, 24, 2017, 7-9pm, location TBA. Basic, advance and refresher courses will be offered.

All current Lay Servants are reminded that in order to be re-approved for 2017, you must submit an Annual Report Form to your pastor prior to Charge Conference and receive approval from your Charge Conference. 

Lay Servants Annual Report Form

Anyone wishing to be approved as a Lay Servant for 2017 must complete the Annual Report Form and turn in to their pastor prior to Charge Conference.  The form should be completed online through Data Services, printed and signed, and turned in to your pastor at least 1 week prior to your Charge Conference. The form has been revised! 

 Lay Servant Ministry

At the 2012 General Conference legislation was passed changing the name of the Lay Speaking program to Lay Servant Ministry.  Below are the various categories of Lay Servants along with descriptions and requirements for each.

A Lay Servant (local church or certified) is a professing member of a local church or charge who is ready and desirous to serve the Church and who is well informed on and committed to the Scriptures and the doctrine, heritage, organization, and life of the United Methodist Church and who has received specific training to develop skills in witnessing to the Christian faith through spoken communication, church and community leadership and care-giving ministries.  An applicant must be active in the support of the local church or charge.  For more specific information on the duties and responsibilities of a Lay Servant, refer to paragraph 266 of the 2012 Book of Discipline. 

Local Church Lay Servant - must take the Basic Course with their pastor's approval, receive Charge Conference approval, and complete the Lay Servant Annual Report Form.  The local church lay servant shall serve the local church in the which membership is held through ministries of leading, caring and communicating.  In order to remain approved, a Refresher Course must be completed every 3 years and annual reports filed.

Certified Lay Servant - must meet the requirements mentioned above and complete an advanced course.  In order to remain certified, an advanced course must be completed every 3 years.

Certified Lay Speaker - a certified lay servant who is called and equipped to provide pulpit supply in the absence of a pastor.  In addition to the certified lay servant requirements, the lay speaker must complete 6 of the following classes:  Worship, Prayer, Discovering Spiritual Gifts, Preaching, United Methodist Heritage and Polity.  They must also be approved by a district and conference committee. 

As this is a new program and it will take time for Certified Lay  Speakers to complete the required courses, the LaGrange District will continue to use Certified Lay Servants (formerly known as Certified Lay Speakers) for pulpit supply through 2016. For more information on this program, contact the District Office.

Pulpit Supply

The District Lay Servant program is able to provide approved persons to fill pulpits in district churches when the pastor is away.  For more information, contact the District Office or the District Lay Servant Ministries Director, Allison Jones at

Lay Servant Classes in the LaGrange District

The Board of Laity typically offers both the Basic class and an advanced class twice a year.  Classes are held at local churches throughout the District.  Brochures are mailed to all pastors and current lay servants about one month prior to the classes.  


For more information about the Lay Servant program, contact the District Office(, Allison Jones ( or District Lay Leader, Rick Adams (  For information about lay speaking curriculum, go to