Authorised Lay Ministers offer a variety of ministries in their local parish or benefice including Pastoral Care Ministry, Community Ministry, Evangelism and Outreach Ministry, Adult Education Ministry, Lay Pioneer Ministry and Youth and Children Ministry.
Please note: We no longer offer training for Authorsed Lay Ministers. We would encourage people who are exploring lay ministry to apply for the Chad Foundations programme.
The information below is for ALMs who were authorised before 2019.
Length of Lay Ministry Authorisation
- ALMs are authorised by the diocese for 5 years, until the age of 70, or until the next diocesan renewal date.
- All ALM authorisations are renewed at the quinquennial renewal on 01 May in the 1st and 6th years of each decade.
- As authorised lay ministers are required to have valid DBS clearance and safeguarding training, their authorisation will only remain valid if these are kept up to date. See further details below.
- At the age of 70, Authorised Lay Ministers transfer to local commissioning and continue their ministry as Locally Commissioned Lay Minsters.
Requirements for a Lay Ministry Authorisation
The requirements for holding a Bishop's Authorisation for Lay Ministry are:
- Support of the incumbent and PCC in each parish to which the Lay Minister is authorised.
- Lay Ministry Review and role descriptor. Details of this can be found below.
- Valid DBS clearance: Enhanced clearance for adult and child workforce, including adult and child barred lists checks. DBS certificates are valid for 3 years. Information about DBS checks can be found here.
- Valid safeguarding training: Church of England Leadership level. Safeguarding Training is valid for 3 years. Details of diocesan safeguarding training can be found here.
- Continuing Ministerial Development (CMD): the equivalent of 1 day per year. Details of training courses will be sent by email and advertised in The Bulletin and on the diocesan website.
Renewing a Lay Ministry Authorisation
When an authorisation is due to be renewed the necessary paperwork will be sent to the Lay Minister.
For an authorisation to be renewed the Lay Minister must send:
- The completed Authorised Lay Minister renewal form.
- The original copy of their authorisation.
- A role descriptor, dated within the last 12 months and signed by the Lay Minister and their incumbent. Details of this can be found below.
to Cath Hughes, Vocations and Training Co-ordinator, St Mary's House, The Close, Lichfield. WS13 7LD.
Transferring a Lay Ministry Authorisation
If you already hold a lay ministry authorisation in the diocese but wish to transfer to a different parish or benefice within the diocese, you can apply to do this once you have settled into your new parish for a period of six months.
To apply to transfer your authorisation you will need to:
- meet the requirements for an authorsation as outlined above.
- agree a role descriptor with your new incumbent. Details of this can be found below.
- have valid DBS clearance
- have valid safeguarding training
- complete the Lay Ministry Authorisation transfer form.
- send your transfer form, role descriptor and most recent authorisation to: Cath Hughes, Vocations and Training Co-ordinator, St Mary's House, The Close, Lichfield. WS13 7LD. Email: Cath Hughes.
Authorised Lay Minister Reviews
Incumbents are asked to carry out a review of each Authorised Lay Minister's ministry. The purpose of the review is to focus on the ministry the ALM offers and to explore what this means for them in the coming months and years.
Authorised Lay Ministers are required to have a full review with their incumbent once every five years and to review their role descriptor annually.
The full review includes:
- getting feedback from other people about their ministry via the 180 degree questionnaire. The questionnaires are passed to 4-6 people who have experience of their ministry and are completed anonymously and returned to the incumbent before the review.
- completing the review form and sending it to the incumbent before the review.
- having a review with their incumbent, during which a role descriptor/working agreement is agreed. A role descriptor template and a guide to drawing up a written role descriptor are available to use if needed.
A signed copy of the most recent role descriptor will be requested as part of the authorisation renewal or transfer process.