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School for Lay Ministry

If You’re Ready...
  • to step forward in a bold, new way
  • to unlock your potential as a servant in the Church
  • to explore the history and structure of our United Methodist Church
  • to commit yourself to pursue your personal ministry at a higher level

You are a great candidate for the Iowa Annual Conference’s School for Lay Ministry(SLM).  SLM is designed to grow Iowa churches by providing a supplemental source of leadership.  Some of the ways that SLM graduates serve are: volunteer management, Christian education, care-giving, youth programming, outreach, and the SLM is the pathway to becoming a Certified Lay Minister.  

Students devote four weekends a year for three years to this program.  Classes are held at the Cornell, Simpson and Morningside colleges on Friday evening through Sunday morning.  There are reading assignments, lecture sessions, group discussions and activities.  It’s not for everyone - you have to be serious about this - but if you are, you will end up having one of the most enlightening experiences in your Christian life.  Weekend courses will dig into worship, congregational care, Christian ethics, theological perspectives, missions, social concerns, church history, doctrine and polity and strategizing for growth.  You will emerge equipped and inspired to see your life as a ministry and to share it openly in ways that suit your strengths and skills.  In our congregation, we have seven SLM graduates, and four current students.  Talk to any of them about the experience: Lesley Toma, Karl Dance, Jan Hoover, Jim Reidy, Chris Congdon, Lisa Congdon, Padma Templeton, Shane Waltz, Jon Cooper, Sue Ney.  Our pastors or church office staff will be happy to assist with the application process.  More information can be found at