What is the Lay Ministry Program?
At First Parish in Wayland, we have long been committed to fostering connections among our members and friends. The Lay Ministry Program is one of the ways to help the congregation build a deeply caring and connected community.
The Lay Ministers are specially trained members of our congregation. They bring a variety of life experiences, skills, professional training, and personal styles to their ministry. The service that the Lay Minister offers is simple yet powerful. It is to be attentive to you – to be a compassionate and open-hearted listener – as you talk through issues that are on your mind. Lay Ministers act under the guidance of the ordained ministers, and are committed to and bound by a confidentiality policy.
While not a substitute for professional services or ministerial support, the Lay Ministers are an additional resource that is offered peer-to-peer to provide spiritual and emotional support. Even if you are not facing a crisis, the lay ministers are available to you. Sometimes it just helps to talk with a caring person.
What Do Lay Ministers Do?
Lay Ministers reach out in many different ways depending upon the wishes of the church member, including:
- Introduce the sharing of our Joys and Concerns during Sunday services
- Phone, meet or walk with members to provide support during a difficult time or transition
- Reach out to newcomers, lonely people, or those unable to be actively involved in church
- Listen compassionately and provide a supportive presence
- Facilitate groups that meet based on a special concern or interest
- Facilitate Chalice Circles, Evensong or other spiritual rituals
- Provide a supportive presence at memorial services
- Organize the Comfort Shawl Ministry
- Assist congregants with referrals and finding the help they seek
- Help organize resources for a congregant in need
How Can You Arrange for Help?
Each month, one member of our Lay Ministry team is assigned to respond to requests for support within our community. His or her name will be listed in the Sunday Bulletin and available through the church office.
The ministers hope that the Lay Ministry Program enhances and deepens the sense of community within the First Parish in Wayland.