Lay Servants - MME

Mid-Maine District
District Director of Lay Servant Ministries
Sally Joy, Director


Click here for the new "Lay Ministries Form"
which has been approved for Church Conferences
Upcoming Lay Servant Course Offered

“Discover Your Spiritual Gifts”

35 Highland Avenue UMC, Gardiner, Maine

Friday, May 12 & 19 – 6:00-8:30 p.m.

and Saturday, May 20 – 8:30 a.m.–2:00 p.m.


Course Description:  This course helps participants understand spiritual gifts. Through the use of an inventory exercise, participants will identify their areas of giftedness and explore how they are formed to contribute in mission and ministry to the church and the world. Participants will also learn what it means to be a spiritual leader and will be equipped to lead others in exploring and using their spiritual gifts.  

Note: This is one of the core courses for those on the Lay Speaker track and is applicable for certification or recertification for Lay Servants and Lay Speakers.

Required TextEach One a Minister by William J. Carter (ISBN 978-0-88177-375-0). This text is required and can be purchased through The Upper Room Bookstore, through Cokesbury, Amazon, or other distributors. The instructor has a few copies available for purchase. You are asked to obtain a copy, prepare for the first class (see below), and bring the book to class with you.

Instructor: Rev. Kathleen Decker Szakas

Location:  Highland Avenue UMC, 35 Highland Ave., Gardiner, Maine. (207) 582-2303

Course fee: $10.  Please register online by May 5, 2017.


Because we are still working out some things with the online registration, we ask that in addition to your online registration, you send the following information to Rev. Kathleen at

Your name, address, email address, phone #, and home church.

We want to be sure she is able to get a copy of the Spiritual Gifts Inventory to all those who have registered prior to the first session.

If paying by check, you may bring it to the first class, made out to New England Conference UMC. Please write
LSM Course – Gardiner on the memo line.

If cost is prohibitive, check with your church – some churches and Districts have scholarships available.

For further information, please contact  If necessary, we can work out make-up dates and times based on participants’ needs.

Preparation for Session 1:

  • Read the introduction (“The Church, Ministry, and Gifts”) on pages 5–7 in Each One a Minister. Note that this session is divided into two parts:
  • Read Ephesians 1:15-16. Then read “God’s Intention for Us” on pages 9–14 in the text. You do not need to complete the exercises as you are reading. Some of the exercises will be part of the class session.
  • Read Ephesians 2:8-10; 3:9-10; and Galatians 3:23-29. Then read “Prepared for Good Deeds” on pages 15–18 in Each One a Minister and “Sharing the Secret” on pages 19–20.
  • Complete Spiritual Gifts Inventory—Pray for discernment before starting the inventory- Refer to page 47 in the text to read about discernment and how it is related to gifts discovery. The Inventory will be provided to you after registration closes May 5.


What’s happening with the Lay Servant Ministry Program?


Many of us are working to regain the Lay Speaker designation, but not all courses on the Lay Speaker track have yet been available. Nor are all advanced courses, although applicable for certification or recertification purposes, on the Lay Speaker track. As the time for local church conferences draws near, we ask that all those seeking certification or recertification use the form designed specifically for Certified Lay Servant.

We really need people (pastors and/or Certified Lay Servants) to volunteer to lead courses. Please contact me at for more information or to offer to help.

For a list of courses, please click on 2017 Lay Servant Ministries Equipping Resources Catalog. Note that some courses are available online.

As many of you know, General Conference made a few more changes to the program this year. The most significant of these is that they have done away with the Local Lay Servant category. Taking the basic course still prepares a person to serve in the same ways as before in their local church and is still the first step in the Lay Servant Ministry program.

Those who were Local Lay Servants will no longer be asked to prepare a report for their local church conference until they have taken an advanced course and are looking to be recognized as a Certified Lay Servant. The Conference expects this to happen within three years of the time the basic course was taken. Otherwise a refresher basic may be required.

It is my understanding that anyone who has taken the basic course for the first time during the past year should submit a Local Lay Servant form so that we will have a record of when you took the course. We know that this is confusing, but ask your patience as we try to work through the recent changes.

Blessings to you all,

Sally Joy

District Chair of Lay Servant Ministries