Thanks to those who have commented (so far) on my previous post about Professional Lay Ministry in the Church – keep the comments coming. In addition to the press release cited in my previous post, here are some helpful resources for thinking about non-ordained rostered ministry* in the ELCA. Some thoughts on this issue in the coming days:
Together for Ministry: Final Report and Actions on the Study of Ministry 1988-1993 (pdf file, 40 pages)
Report to the ELCA Diaconal Ministry Community on What is God Calling Us To Be: A Consultation on Vocation and Service (pdf file, 10 pages)
ELCA Lay Rostered Ministry Survey: Findings (pdf file, released in 1999, 6 pages)
* Some clarification for those who are not familiar with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s roster of leaders. The church maintains four rosters of leaders who are seminary-trained and approved by the denomination to be called to ministry – a roster of ordained leaders (ie, pastors), and three "lay" (non-ordained) rosters: Associate in Ministry, Diaconal Minister, Deaconness. The three lay rosters have distinct histories and ministry emphases, though in practice members of each of these rosters serve interchangably in a number of lay ministries, including chaplaincy, Christian Education, administration, music ministry, etc..