2018 Lay Leadership Academy on Track (10/6/18)

Posted by on Aug 21, 2018 in EventAnnouncement, Training, UMC Shared Ministries | 0 comments

What’s a “Laity Leadership Academy?” 

In the United Methodist Church, all of God’s children are called to do things like Proclaim the Gospel, Be a Light, Be a Servant, to love, to grow, to “make disciples who make new disciples.”  And depending on how we feel God’s call in our lives, there are generally two ways to do all of that:  as Clergy, or as Laity.

Rosa Williams. Lay Leader of the Greater New Jersey Annual Conference.

Training for Clergy is pretty intense.  You can complete the Local Pastor’s School and become a local pastor.  But the path to ordained ministry is much deeper.  First you must first earn a Bachelor’s degree, then you must earn a Masters of Divinity, then you have to submit to interviews, write papers, and be approved by the Conference.  Then you can become a “Provisional Elder”, and eventually an “Elder in Full Connection.”

But what about the Laity?  Those of us who don’t have the title of “Rev.” are critical to the work of the church.  What training is available for the Laity?

There are many opportunities such as Regional Days of Learning or Lay Servant training.  All sorts of workshops are available throughout the year.  But one of the year’s biggest training opportunities for Lay people is the annual “Laity Leadership Academy.”  It’s a one day event held in the conference’s Mission and Resource Center in Neptune, NJ.


2018 Laity Leadership Academy

This year’s Laity Leadership Academy day is coming up.  Here are the details:

2018 Laity Leadership Academy

Date:                Saturday October 6

Times:             ~8-5 PM

Where:            Conference Mission and Resource Center in Neptune, NJ

For Whom:     Anyone!

Cost:                $50 registration

Deadline:       Register by Friday, September 7 



(After the drive to Neptune), the day begins with a time of worship, and then we break into our selected workshop (“track” as they call them).  Since we’re Methodists and love to eat, of course there’s a lunch break.  After lunch, we return to our workshop for the afternoon session.

Registration / check in begins at 7:45 AM, and the afternoon session starts at 1:30 PM.  The whole day will end somewhere around 5:00 PM. 



Five “tracks” (workshops) are available, and you choose from one of them.  Here’s a quick summary of the available workshops:

Track 1: A Closer Walk

This workshop will engage participants to improve the spiritual tone in our churches; by helping to create an environment more conducive to going deeper in faith and by infusing a more intensely expressive spirituality centered upon our Lord Jesus Christ, by testifying through word and deed that He is alive in our lives and in our churches.

  • Looking at specific tools and “Means of Grace” to increase faith commitment.
  • Examining ways to engage people with the Bible as a transformational tool.
  • Expanding prayer time.

Track 2: Building up the Beloved Community of God

The demographic landscape of the United States is changing with increased diversity in the communities throughout the country. We will explore how we can build up the Beloved Community of God as we seek ways to minister across racial and cultural boundaries.

  • What does the Bible say about diversity?
  • What is culture?
  • What is my cultural location?
  • How can I minister across the racial and cultural lines?

Track 3: Vital ministries with Older Adults

This track provides an overview of the aging process, including physical, mental, and social changes. Learn strategies to engage in the support for elderly parishioners and families.

  • Identifying available community resources and services.
  • Understanding how faith communities can partner in ways that bring value to God’s people in response to their needs.
  • Engaging in vital conversation/resourcing around leveraging older adults.
  • Developing an action plan to implement ministry of elderly caring.

Track 4: Generosity Vs. Funding

There are ways to help your church better understand the importance of “generosity” and not just fundraising. This track will discuss taking the 4-point starter stance to get it right from the start.

  • Identify how growing in generosity will help people grow spiritually.
  • Learn the value of creativity to engage with the people of your congregation and community.
  • Explore ways to connect to the younger generation and those that are always on the go.
  • Find out how to make stewardship a year long process without the constant “ask”.

Track 5: Digital Strategy for Salvation

Morning Session: Your Church Brand & Social Media Channels. This track provides guidance on how to determine a powerful church brand through sharing your “Unique Church Story.” We will reveal the seven “must haves” to ensure the time spent on social media provides engagement with both existing and new church members.

Afternoon Session: Websites. This website building track is designed to help your congregation and their leaders understand the critical decisions for the church website.



Registration is done on the Greater NJ Conference website.  To go to the registration page, click this button:  Laity Academy Registration  

If needed, carpools from PUMC to Neptune (the city- not the planet!) will be formed.  Stay tuned.

If you’re a Lay Servant, attending the Laity Academy can count for your re-certification training.


More Info

If the above summary didn’t answer your questions, here’s the pamphlet for this year’s Laity Leadership Academy….




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