In his book the theology of the laity Kraemer explorers the origin of the term laity and notes that the word, “Lay” originates from the Greek word Laikos. His deliberate in reminding us that the word lay is deeply religious. He says the following regarding the religiosity of the word, “It means originally, belonging to the “laos”; that is the chosen people of God, both in the Old Testament and in the new Testament ” (Kraemer, 1958:49). Kraemer maintains that therefore, all members of the Church are laos and only from this basis do they receive a more specific call, ministry and form part of an order.
One of the six calls of the journey to the new land is “the rediscovery of every member ministry or the priesthood of all believers.” As the Church, we take the role of lay people very seriously as we believe in every member ministry. Over the past few decades, the Church has made efforts to equip, train and afford room for ministry to all her people.
The role of the Co-ordinator for lay training is therefore to:
• Focus on capacitating laity
• Assisting all Methodists to believe that they are called to be a royal priesthood (1 Peter 2:9) and stepping up to this role.
• Facilitate curriculum formation and training for confirmation class, class leader and meetings, cell groups and bible study groups, lay pastors, youth pastors, young adults etc.
• Christian formation
• Assist Methodists through training and study material in rediscovering our call to discipleship and our Methodist ethos
• Manage Wesley studies training, local preacher’s training and the order of Evangelism training
The task of the Co-ordinator for lay training is pivotal to the spiritual formation and growth of the Methodist people in our connexion. This task cannot be done by one person but requires the involvement of every member (in their eagerness to learn, know and grow) and every minister (In their willingness to impart knowledge and create room for the laity)
Please do not hesitate to contact the Co-ordinator for lay training should you need material in your District, circuit or society on any of the above areas. We do not seek to reinvent the wheel, I therefore urge all Methodists who are inspired to develop curriculums, who are in possession of material that works and is in line with our Methodist doctrine to please forward me the material and we can see how best to use it for the enriching of all Methodists. All sources will be acknowledged. Do not hesitate to download material from the EMMU website so you can utilise it in your context.