Baltimore Region Lay Servant Academy

2018 Baltimore Region Lay Servant Academy 

The Baltimore Region has many dates/locations to choose from. Register for any of the following through the button below:
Feel free to register for more than one class - $35 per course (if registering for the 6 studies in the lay speaking track, please contact Darlynn McCrae at 443-254-2083 or email  )


Location 1 … Saturday, 1/20
524 Maryland Ave, Essex, MD  
STUDY #101 – BASIC … 9 AM - 5 PM  

Location 2 … Saturday, 1/27
Ames UMC, 112 Baltimore Pike, Bel Air, MD
STUDY #810 – UMC POLITY … 9 AM - 5 PM

Location 3 … Saturday, 2/10
John Wesley UMC (BUS LINE), 3202 W. North Ave, Baltimore, MD       
STUDY #600 – SPIRITUAL GIFTS… 9 AM - 5 PM         

Location 4 … Saturday, 2/17
Cranberry UMC, 1632 Perryman Rd, Aberdeen, MD
STUDY #101 – BASIC … 9 AM - 5 PM
STUDY #500 – PRAYER … 9 AM - 5 PM                       

Location 5 … Saturday, 2/24
Ames UMC, 112 Baltimore Pike, Bel Air, MD

Location 6 … Sundays, 3/4, 3/11, 3/18, 3/25
Towson UMC, 501 Hampton Lane, Towson MD 21286
STUDY #420 – STORYTELLING … 2:30-5 PM  

Location 7 … Saturday, 3/17
Towson UMC, 501 Hampton Lane, Towson MD 21286
STUDY #101 – BASIC… 9 AM - 5 PM
STUDY #210 – GRACE TO LEAD … 9 AM - 5 PM

Location 8 … Saturday, 3/24
Epworth Chapel UMC  (BUS LINE), 3317 Saint Lukes Lane, Baltimore MD          
STUDY #400 – CALLED TO PREACH … 9 AM - 5 PM   

Location 9 … Wednesdays, 4/4, 4/11, 4/18, 4/25 (persons need to attend all 4 classes to receive credit)
Perry Hall UMC, 9515 Belair Rd, Baltimore, MD
STUDY #940 – SENIOR MINISTRY … 10 AM-12 noon   

Location 10 … Saturday, 4/14
St. John UMC, 1205 N Main St, Hampstead, MD

Location 11 … Thursday, 4/19
Upon registration, the Dial-in number and Access Code will be forwarded. The class will meet Thursday, 4/19 for a pre-class orientation to discuss the course, expectations, due dates for assignments, and final presentation. Online studies begin Monday, 4/23 with the final face to face class on Sunday, 4/29 from 3-5 pm at Essex UMC.

Location 12…Saturday, 4/21
St. Matthews New Life UMC (BUS LINE), 416 E 23rd St, Baltimore, MD
STUDY #300 – CARING CONGREGATION … 9 AM - 5 PM        

Location 13…Saturday, 4/28
Linden Heights UMC, 9914 Harford Rd, Parkville, MD
STUDY #101 – BASIC … 9 AM - 5 PM              
STUDY #930 – AGING /21ST CENTURY … 9 AM - 5 PM           

Location 14…Saturday, 5/5
Graceland UMC, 6714 Youngstown Ave, Baltimore, MD
STUDY #710 – CONTEMPORARY WORSHIP … Sat. 9 AM - 5 PM            

Feel free to register for more than one class - $35 per course (if registering for the 6 studies in the lay speaking track, please contact Darlynn McCrae at 443-254-2083 or email  )


General Information

APPLICATION FOR LAY SERVANT MINISTRIES - If interested in becoming a Certified Lay Servant, please complete the application.

ASSIGNMENTS - Registrants will receive reading assignments and pre-course work prior to the first class. This work is required to be turned in to the instructor on the first day of class and will count toward the 10-hours. 

 CANCELLATIONS – Baltimore Region may cancel a class for insufficient registrations and will give as much notice as possible for persons to register for another class or request a refund/credit. 

CERTIFICATES - Upon successful completion of the class, participants will need to email Darlynn McCrae at   to request the Certificate of Completion and the name that should be printed on the certificate (which will be emailed). 

 LAY SERVANT MINISTRIES - To become a certified lay servant, must complete the basic lay servant class and an approved advanced class during spring training. 

ONLINE REGISTRATIONS - Visit the Baltimore Region page at to register for studies.  If experiencing difficulty with the online process, contact John Gauthier (Baltimore Suburban) at 410-290-7311. To mail payments, send to Baltimore Region SOCG, Baltimore-Washington, 11711 East Market Place, Fulton, MD 20759-2592. Make check payable to BWC Treasurer and note BR SOCG. Please note: instructors cannot accept payments.

RECERTIFICATION – Certified Lay Servants and Certified Lay Speakers must complete approved studies every 3 years to remain in lay servant ministries. If not completed, the Certified Lay Servant will need to renter lay servant ministries with the basic and an advanced class. Certified Lay Ministers must complete coursework every 2 years.

TEXTBOOKS - Order books early! Textbooks will not be available in class. For your convenience, the Cokesbury ISBN number is provided following the title of the textbook. Visit the website at or call 800-672-1789. However, feel free to order from other book distributors such as Amazon.  All participants will need to have the required textbook to complete assignments and to bring to class.


Course Descriptions, Textbook Information, Instructors 

STUDY #101: Basic Lay Servant. Foundational course for lay servant ministries. 
TEXTBOOK: “Basic Lay Servant Ministries” - ISBN 13:9780881776263;
INSTRUCTOR: Mrs. Ophelia Brown Carter - District Lay Leader, Baltimore Metropolitan --- 

STUDY #200:  Leadership Essentials. This resource will help men and women in the church find the tools, direction, and inspiration they need to become the best leaders they can be. Leadership Essentials offers practical skills, worksheets, and practice exercises in areas including: Making Disciples; Building and Sustaining Teams; Meetings that Work; Developing Vision, Mission, and Values Statements; Effective Communication; Managing Conflict; and more.
TEXTBOOK: “Leadership Essentials”  - ISBN 13: 9780687335954; 
INSTRUCTOR: Mrs. Barbara Dickson -  District Lay Leader, Baltimore Suburban ---    

STUDY #210: Grace to Lead. This study will guide participants into effective contemporary leadership, from a solidly Wesleyan perspective.  An essential resource for all who lead and teach, this study will help motivate, form, and guide church leaders.
TEXTBOOK: “Grace to Lead:  Practicing Leadership in the Wesleyan Tradition” - ISBN-13: 978-0938162537; 
INSTRUCTORRev. Katie Grover  - Pastor, Patapsco & Lodge Forest UMC, Baltimore, MD ---    

STUDY #230: Leading Bible Study. This course is a guide to discovering and asking the key questions - about biblical texts, about readers of the Bible, and about the interaction of the two - that forms the basis of biblical interpretation today.
TEXTBOOK: “Biblical Interpretation” - ISBN-13: 978-0687016082;
INSTRUCTORRev. Paul Papp - Pastor, Cockeysville/Texas Charge ---                      

STUDY #300: The Caring Congregation. This study will equip congregations for caring ministries. Lay members will work alongside pastors to provide quality care for the church family. This study provides necessary resources to help pastors organize congregations for care and equip people to listen, visit, comfort, etc.
TEXTBOOK:  “The Caring Congregation”- ISBN 13: 9781426793127; 
INSTRUCTOR: Mrs. Ophelia Brown Carter - District Lay Leader, Baltimore Metropolitan --- 

STUDY #307 - LAY PASTORAL CARE GIVINGThis study will help participants improve their caring skills while learning how to care for others- whether the community of faith or the extended community? Overworked pastors will find personal respite in the use of caring gifts among the laity in the church. TEXTBOOK:  “Lay Pastoral Care Giving” - ISBN-13: 9780881775549; 
INSTRUCTOR: Rev. Cary James, Pastor, Sharp Street UMC, Baltimore, MD ---   

STUDY #310:  Serving in Church Visitation. Training includes self-assessment and do's and don'ts for various special-needs situations in homes, hospital, or in a restaurant over a cup of coffee. The act of friendship is an inroad to hearts and lives that creates trust, value, and incredible potential for ministry. This study helps you to -Be Motivated. 
TEXTBOOK:  “Serving in Church Visitation”  - ISBN 13: 9780310241034; 
INSTRUCTOR: Mrs. Ophelia Brown Carter -  District Lay Leader, Baltimore Metropolitan ---   

STUDY #600: Spiritual Gifts. This course helps participants understand spiritual gifts and how the church can use them to fulfill its mission and ministry.
TEXTBOOK“Each One a Minister" -ISBN 13:9780881773750; 
INSTRUCTORS: Ms. Shirley Faulcon – Certified Lay Servant, Christ UMC, Baltimore, MD and Mrs. Darlynn McCrae - Certified Lay Servant, Ames UMC, Baltimore, MD ---   

STUDY #400: Called to Preach. This course is designed for those who have not completed formal preaching training, for pastors seeking a basic refresher course, and for others who are called upon to preach in a pastor’s absence.
TEXTBOOK:  “From Pew to Pulpit” – ISBN: 9780687066605;
INSTRUCTORRev. Dr. Tony Hunt  - Epworth Chapel UMC, Baltimore, MD …

STUDY #402: Effective Sermons. This course will help you develop a sermon. The parts of this helpful experiential guide for novice and already certified lay speakers include: 1. types of sermons, from exegetical to topical to those for children 2. finding the story and using the hymnal 3. reading the Bible aloud 4. communicating on paper and moving beyond it 5. presentation and practice This course will help participants prepare sermons by providing plans and worksheets, stressing good oral communication, offering suggestions on incorporating stories, and providing time for prayer, study, and revision.  
TEXTBOOK: "From Your Heart to Theirs: Delivering an Effective Sermon" -  ISBN-13: 978-0881775365; 
INSTRUCTORRev. Melissa Rudolph - Pastor-Hampstead, North Carroll Coop. Parish ---   

STUDY #430: Evangelism. Participants will learn from John Wesley how to practice relational evangelism. They will discover that evangelism involves not only sharing our faith with others but also welcoming people into a community where they can grow in faith.
TEXTBOOK: “Transforming Evangelism - ISBN 13: 9780881774856; 
INSTRUCTOR: Rev. Wanda Duckett  -  Baltimore Metropolitan DS –   

STUDY #420: Biblical Storytelling.  Biblical Storytelling is a spiritual discipline which entails the lively interpretation, animation, expression of a narrative text that has first been deeply internalized and then is “remembranced”, embodied, breathed and voiced by a teller as a sacred act in community with an audience/ congregation. Participants will learn a Biblical story and have fun telling it; explore how Biblical storytelling reinvigorates worship and reimagines evangelism and; Get excited about telling Biblical stories in their ministry.
TEXTBOOK: Handouts provided by the instructor. 
INSTRUCTORRev. Mark Johnson - Pastor-Towson UMC, Towson, MD and Certified Storyteller … 

STUDY #500:  Prayer. The author seeks to relieve the anxiety of inexperienced leaders of public prayer and the discomfort of those with and for whom they pray in this practical guide to the art of praying in public. This study includes reflections on the nature of prayer; the forms, mechanics, and vocabularies of prayer; and concrete exercises.
TEXTBOOKLet The Whole Church Say Amen! - ISBN 13: 9780687090778; 
INSTRUCTOR: Mrs. Barbara Dickson - District Lay Leader, Baltimore Suburban ---    

STUDY #510 H: Serving in Prayer Ministry  (Hybrid online class). Prayer is absolutely indispensable for the church. The early church was powerful because it prayed--and today, God moves in praying churches in ways that planning and programs alone can't produce. You can help your church become more alive, more powerful, and more in love with Jesus Christ as you and your group learn and practice the secrets of effective prayer.
TEXTBOOK: “Serving in Your Church Prayer Ministry”  - ISBN 13: 9780310247586; 
INSTRUCTOR: Pastor Mary E. Robinson  -  Pastor, Essex UMC, Essex, MD ---     

STUDY #900: Conflict Transformation. Transforming conflict into a positive force is a spiritual pursuit and needs to be grounded in biblical principles: love of God, neighbor, self.
TEXTBOOK“The Spirit and Art of Conflict Transformation”  - ISBN 13: 9780835810265; 
INSTRUCTORPastor John Mayden – Mt. Zion UMC, Upperco, MD ---    

STUDY #930: Aging & Ministry in the 21st Century. Practical guide for building ministry for older adults in Ministry with Boomers and Beyond. This affirms that the majority of older adults have plenty to give and the church needs to tap into their wisdom, energy, experience and talents.
TEXTBOOK: “Aging and Ministry in the 21st Century” - ISBN 13: 9780881775402; 
INSTRUCTOR: Mrs. Barbara Dickson -  District Lay Leader, Baltimore Suburban ---   

STUDY #700: Worshiping United Methodists. Focuses on the ministry of the lay servant who either regularly or occasionally leads a group or congregation.
TEXTBOOK“Worshiping with United Methodists” - ISBN 13: 780687335268
INSTRUCTORPastor Andre Briscoe  - St. Matthews New Life UMC, Baltimore, MD --

STUDY #710:  Contemporary Worship. This study will help participants plan and lead contemporary worship services. Particular attention will be given to the interpretative reading of Scripture, congregational prayer, training lay worship leaders, and using Praise Bands.
TEXTBOOK:  Instructors will provide materials. 
INSTRUCTORS: Mr. Chuck Conjar - Certified Lay Servant/Lay Speaker, Graceland UMC, Dundalk, MD  Lecturer, Towson University and Harford Community College ---     and Mr. Michael Campbell  - Certified Lay Servant and Worship Team coordinator, Arbutus UMC, Arbutus, MD --   

STUDY #750:  Multi-media in Worship. Congregations of all sizes are acknowledging the gift of media technology; however very few have access to formal training. In this online course, students will be introduced to the hardware and software in worship technology and discover their ability to plan, create and implement technology in a worship setting. The workshop will also help the student learn about worship itself and the role of technology in design, appropriateness and excellence. Special consideration will be given to budget and a low-cost approach to technology implementation. This workshop is designed for the church volunteer or pastor who would classify themselves as “beginners” in multi-media experience.
INSTRUCTOR: Rev. John Rudolph, Pastor-Hampstead, North Carroll Coop. Parish ---  (Instructor will provide handouts) 

STUDY #940:  Senior Adult Ministry - Morning classes will be offered.
TEXTBOOK: God's Mission…Our Journey "A Mission Journey: A Handbook for Volunteers" by General Board of Global Ministries  - ISBN-13: 978-0881776690 

STUDY #800: United Methodist Heritage. This course will explore the special gifts of theology, witness, and organization that The UMC brings to the church universal, how we got where we are today, and how our distinctive emphases are still needed in the 21st-century.
TEXTBOOK: “Living Our Beliefs: The United Methodist Way” - ISBN 13: 9780881775716. 
INSTRUCTORRev. Ann LaPrade – Baltimore Suburban DS –   

STUDY #810: United Methodist Polity. Participants will receive an overview of the structure and organization of The United Methodist Church.  In addition to the required textbook, a copy of the current Book of Discipline is recommended for this course. 
TEXTBOOK: “The Method of Our Mission” - ISBN 13: 9781426767180; 
INSTRUCTOR: Rev. Marlon B. Tilghman - Pastor, Ames UMC, Bel Air, MD --- 

STUDY #820: Social Principles. Justice in Everyday Life takes an in-depth look at the Social Principles of the United Methodist Church—the church's attempt to speak on contemporary issues with which it is confronted.
TEXTBOOK: “Justice in Everyday Life-A Look at the Social Principles of the United Methodist Church” - ISBN 13: 9780881776522; 
INSTRUCTORMs. Eileen Washington - Certified Lay Minister, Emmarts UMC, Baltimore, MD ---   

STUDY #910:  Stewardship. This study urges ministries and congregations to become stewards-in-action in all God has entrusted to us. Members go beyond thinking in terms of dollars contributed to see stewardship as becoming living examples of the gospel.
TEXTBOOK“Afire with God“ - ISBN  13: 9780881775204. 
INSTRUCTOR: Rev. Marlon B. Tilghman – Pastor, Ames UMC, Bel Air, MD ---   

If unable to register online, contact district administrator John Gauthier (Baltimore Suburban Administrator) at 410-290-7311. You can also complete this registration form and mail with payment to:
Baltimore Region SOCG, Baltimore-Washington Conference, 11711 East Market Place, Fulton, MD 20759-2592. 
Make check payable to BWC Treasurer and note BR SOCG. 
Please note: instructors cannot accept payments.

Last Name                                                                                          

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Feel free to register for more than one class - $35 per course (if registering for the 6 studies in the lay speaking track, please contact Darlynn McCrae at 443-254-2083 or email  )


Location #                              Study #