This letter is to all Elders, Deacons, Associate Members and Local Pastors who have completed the Course of Study.
In the Indiana Conference of The United Methodist Church, we are striving to create a culture of call throughout the state of Indiana. We have encouraged you to talk about call and to empower those in your local church who may be discerning the call to specialized ministry.
We want to thank you for your efforts. We are seeing an increase in the number of persons who are entering the candidacy process. And with that increase comes another way in which you may assist this culture of call.
As part of that culture of call, the work of lifting up and supporting new leaders in our conference does not end in the local church. As clergy in the conference, we have the responsibility and the privilege to work with those who are in the early stages of their ministry. There is a constant need for mentors at all stages of ministry. A brief definition of the different types of mentors that are needed in the Indiana Conference are below:
A Candidacy Mentor works with those who are in the candidacy process. They attend the Candidacy Orientation Retreat and convene three monthly gatherings of the candidates in their district. The need is for a minimum of 2 persons per district up to two times per year (depending on the number of candidates).
A Clergy Mentor works with the Local Pastors in their district who have not completed Course of Study. The need varies depending upon the district.
A RIM Facilitator works with those provisional members who are a part of the Residency in Ministry program as they prepare for ordination. They attend three retreats per year and convene monthly meetings with their group. If you would like more information about this, please contact the RIM Director, Shannon Stringer (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Certified Lay Minister Mentor
Works with those persons who are Certified Lay Ministers (CLM). This is a new program in Indiana that is gaining momentum. The Mentor meets monthly with the CLM and quarterly with the charge where the CLM is assigned. The Mentor also assures that the CLM's charge has access to the sacraments.
If you are interested in serving in one of these capacities, please contact your District Superintendent or the chair of your District Committee on Ministry (contact information can be found here: http://www.inumc.org/districtcommitteeonministry). Thank you for your prayerful consideration of these important ministries.
Rev. Matthew J. Leffler, Sr.
Associate Director of Leadership Development – Ministerial Services