The Candidacy Process & Applications

Please scroll down to find information, applications, and forms related to Certified Candidacy, Local Pastor, Provisional Membership, Associate Membership, Full Membership and Certified Lay Minister (in that order).


Becoming a certified candidate is required to apply for local pastor licensing or to apply for ordained ministry.
The official list of requirements to become a certified candidate in the New England Conference are found in this checklist:  Certified Candidacy Requirement Checklist

More detailed instructions related to the certified candidacy process and the required evaluations (psych, medical, background, credit) can be found in this document:  
Candidacy & UMCARES Advice/Instructions for candidates and candidacy mentors

Certified Candidacy Forms and Links:



Local Pastor in the New England Conference must apply for a license to serve in a local church or other ministry. See the requirements in this document:  Local Pastor Requirement Checklist 
Most candidates for local pastor must successfully complete an approved Local Pastor Licensing School prior to licensing and other educational while serving. For information on Local Pastor Licensing School, the New Pastor Orientation, and the Course of Study, please click on this link to the education page: Local Pastor Education 



Provisional membership in the Order of Deacon or Order of Elder

To be eligible to apply for provisional membership one must:

  • Be a certified candidate for at least 1 year, and no more than 12 years (see requirements for becoming a certified candidate, Candidacy Checklist, above)
  • Have completed a bachelor's degree
  • Have completed an M.Div. (Elder or Deacon) or master's (Deacon) degree from a seminary listed by the University Senate. Seminaries approved by University Senate 
  • Have completed 1/2 of the Basic Graduate Theological Studies (BGTS) and be able to complete all BGTS before FULL membership (para 324.4a; BGTS include Old Testament, New Testament, theology, church history, mission of the church in the world, evangelism, worship/liturgy, UM History,UM Doctrine, and UM Polity
  • Have an up-to-date psych and background check. If these assessment are more than 7 years old, you will need a new one. Please contact the BOM Registrar ( or 603-892-0359).
These Application Packets contain instructions, requirements, and forms in the pdf format. MS-Word formatted forms (forms only) are also available below.
  • Applications for Provisional Membership for Feb 2018 exams will be posted here before July 1st.                                            

Word-formatted forms for Provisional Membership Exams will be posted here by July 1st:
Use of these Word Forms does not excuse one from the instructions in the pdf packet!
Please be sure to read the entire pdf packet!

  • Application for Clergy Relationship
  • Personal and Professional Info Form
  • Mentor Form
  • Faculty/Clergy Reference for Provisional Application
  • Lay Reference for Provisional Elder Application
  • Lay Reference for Provisional Deacon Application

Application Packets and forms are also available by contacting the BOM Registrar at (603) 892-0359 or 



Fruitfulness Project
A requirement for full membership in both the Order of Elder and the Order of Deacon is was the Fruitfulness Project which is "a project that demonstrates fruitfulness in carrying out the church's mission of 'Making Disciples of Jesus Christ for the Transformation of the World'".

         What is a Fruitfulness Project? 
Read this document for a basic explanation.
         FP Proposal Form   Submit a proposal form until your Project has been approved.
         FP Update Form   After your proposal is approved, submit an update form each April.
         Approved FP Proposal Library  Every Fruitfulness Project proposal must be approved by the BOM ahead            of time.  We have a "library" of proposals that have been approved. New England provisional members can            access these sample proposals by contacting the BOM Registrar (
         Order of Elder Application Options
         With the addition of the Fruitfulness Project to the requirements for full membership, the New
         England Conference decided to no longer require Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE).
         To clarify:

         (A) Two different applications will be available for full membership in the Order of Elder: (1) the "Project    
         Application" which requires the Fruitfulness Project and (2) the "Alternative Application" which does not
         require the fruitfulness project.

         (B) If you began an approved Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) program prior to July 1, 2014 (and
         completed 1 unit of CPE), you are eligible to choose which application you prefer to use.

         (C) If you had not begun CPE prior to July 1, 2014, you will be required to use the Project Application (some
         folks commissioned prior to 2014 may also be allowed a choice, please contact the BOM Registrar).

         (D) If you are eligible to choose an application, once the choice has been submitted (in Part 1 of the a
         application), the application type cannot be changed. Requirements cannot be interchanged between    

         (E) Deacon candidates are not required to do CPE, and are required to complete a Fruitfulness Project
         regardless of the dates that they may have taken a CPE program.

         (F) Please direct questions about full member requirements to the BOM Registrar

         (G) Please read this additional information on the Fruitfulness Project (FP) above.

Applying for Full Membership
in the Order of Deacon
(para.330) or in the Order of Elder (para.335)
To be eligible to interview for full membership, applicants must have:

  • completed all of the following Basic Graduate Theological Studies (para 324.4a):
     Theology, Old Testament, New Testament, Church History, Mission of the church in the world,  Worship/Liturgy, Evangelism, UM History, UM Doctrine, and UM Polity.
  • been a provisional member for 3 to 8 years.
  • served full-time (or equivalent) under episcopal appointment for at least 3 full annual conference year
  • completed the Provisional Leadership Academy (if commissioned 2011 or later).
  • completed all other application requirements and submitted them on time.


The pdf Packets above are the official applications.
As a courtesy only, Word-formatted forms are also available for use:
Application for Clergy Relationship E-Form
Personal and Professional Info Sheet
Declaration of Application Choice - Elder applicants only
Lay Reference Form - ELDER applicants only
Clergy Reference Form - ELDER applicants only
Lay Reference Form - DEACON applicants only
Clergy Reference Form - DEACON applicants only
If you need WORD forms more suitable for printing (not electronic forms), please contact the BOM Registrar.
All Application Packets and Forms are also available by contacting the BOM Registrar, Deborah Venator, (603) 892-0359, or


Applicants must (para.322):
  • Have reached age 40
  • Have served 4 years as full-time local pastors
  • Have completed licensing studies and the 5-year Course of Study
  • Have completed a minimum of 60 hours toward a B.A. or equivalent            
  • A complete checklist of submission requirements can be found in the application packet:               

Applications for the February 2018 exams will be posted before July 1st
Application Packets and other forms are also available by contacting the BOM Registrar, Deborah Venator, (603) 892-0359, or


Certified Lay Minister (CLM)

A Certified Lay Minister is a qualified United Methodist layperson called to congregational leadership as part of a ministry team under the supervision of a clergy person.  This person enters the certification process, which includes training, support, supervision and accountability while serving in a local church assigned by the District Superintendent.

CLMs may preach the word, and guide the program ministry and mission of a congregation.  However, CLMs may provide leadership in many other contexts and have responsibility for other expressions of mission and ministry both within the congregation and in the community, district, or annual conference.

While CLMs can provide the essential guidance and pastoral leadership and services necessary for effective mission and ministry in churches, they are not intended to replace clergy, but rather to work beside them and with them as part of a team ministry.  (

CLM Requirement Checklist - Official list of requirements to become a CLM in the New England Conference.

Certified Lay Minister Course Materials

Frequently Asked Questions about Certified Lay Ministry

General Information on CLM certification


Looking for Something? 

If you are unable to find what you need on the BOM webpages, or if you find any incorrect links, please contact the Thanks!


 Back to The Board of Ordained Ministry MAIN PAGE