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A Lay Servant is a member of the congregation who has completed required courses and has been approved by a district or annual conference committee to conduct worship services, preach and lead study sessions as requested by the pastor or district superintendent.

New Document (pdf) describing the Lay Servant Certification Process, including requirements to become a Certified Lay Speaker.

History Lay servant ministry has existed in the United Methodist Church since 1959, but its origins date back to the very beginnings of the church. The office of exhorter, was recognized in the 1784 Book of Discipline of the Methodist Episcopal Church. The office known as lay speaker was first recognized in the1948 Book of Discipline. The 2012 United Methodist General Conference renamed the ministry from Lay Speaking to Lay Servants because the responsibilities of a lay speaker have expanded beyond speaking.

Today All Lay Servants must submit a report of their ministry activities at their Church/Charge Conference.

Download this form: Lay Servant Annual Conference Report Form. Complete it and turn it in to your pastor for your Annual Church/Charge Conference.

The Lay Servant Academy is a comprehensive developmental program for laity that helps people identify their calls to ministry and develop skills in caring, leading and communicating ministries. It is often the turning point for lay people who are seeking to offer significant service to both church and community. Training sessions are held throughout the conference. If you feel called to serve your church in a more formal leadership position, we hope you’ll join the 600+ Lay Servants in our conference.

Upcoming Events:

    How to Become a Certified Lay Minister


    Conference Director of Lay Servants: Roger L. Curless

    Aurora District Director: Rae Kipper

    Chicago Northwestern District Director: Cynthia Barron 

    Chicago Southern District Director: Irma Clark

    DeKalb District Director: Gale Brandner

    Elgin District Director: Eusebio Camacho

    Rockford District Director: Leslie Stanford



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