West Virginia Western Maryland Synod Assembly, 2021
The Synod Lay Worship Leaders Commission

There is an important need in our synod for lay worship leaders to lead worship and fill pulpits for those congregations without a pastor or when a pastor may be on vacation. For this reason, the Synod Council has developed a Synod Lay Worship Leaders Commission (SLWL).

The SLWL has been meeting as it develops the program. This program will have four classes of license – 1. Reader; 2. Apprentice Preacher; 3. Jour Preacher; and 4. Master Preacher.

The SLWL is currently developing competencies for each of these classes, beginning with the first class of Reader. At the time of our Synod Assembly, we will have opened applications for the Reader level and have begun to grant approvals for Readers who have met competency. We will also have a library for those Readers.

Applications for the reader level were opened on September 13. Applications may be obtained from the synod website or from any SLWL Commission member.

The SLWL will continue to develop the competencies for the other three levels and intends to have full competency resources by January 31, 2022.

It is important to keep in mind that those currently serving as Lay Worship Leaders can continue serving as Lay Worship Leaders as they have been doing while the program is being developed. Furthermore, the current Lay Worship Leaders will be able to move immediately into whichever of the four levels for which they are able to show competency. The SLWL Commission members will contact the current Lay Worship Leaders to address any questions and to encourage them to apply for their appropriate level of licensure.

The Rev. Sean Smith
The Rev. Ruth Bullwinkle
The Rec. Ian Reid
Paul Wangerin


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