Lay Licensing

License(s) valid from Advent I 2018 to Advent 1 2021

The application process for the next licensing season will open in November for Worship Leaders, Eucharistic Ministers, Eucharistic Visitors. A link to the one electronic application form that takes the place of the multiple lay license paper forms for these ministries will be posted here and mailed in a packet to each congregation. Applications for preaching licenses (pdf) will also be posted in November but these will not be part of the electronic form.  

The Diocese of Maine's Safe Church Policy states that Safe Church Training (Parts A and B) is required of "...all Diocesan employees, volunteers, and others acting on behalf of the Diocese, as well as all clergy of the Diocese and persons otherwise accountable to the Diocese...Safe Church training is required every four years...". Therefore, Safe Church Training is now required for all licensed lay ministers (Eucharistic Minister, Worship Leader, Eucharistic Visitor, Preacher).

Please understand that licenses will not be issued or renewed for persons who have not completed the required diocesan Safe Church training (both Part A and Part B) within the past 4 years. Find out about how to complete Safe Church training here. And read the memo regarding this change and letter from Bishop Lane about how to proceed that will be included in the packet mailed to you.

In order to allow time for everyone to be compliant with the new requirements, the application period will be extended until February 28, 2019.

 

Application
 
Priests-in-Charge (or Senior Wardens in Absence of a Priest), please use this online form to apply for Worship Leader, Eucharist Ministers, and Eucharistic Visitors licenses:  APPLICATION FOR LICENSING OF LAY PERSONS 
 
 
Guidelines 

 

  • Licenses for the following ministries: Worship Leader, Eucharistic Minister and Eucharistic Visitor are issued for a period of three years (Advent I 2018 to Advent I 2021).  Training for the ministries of Worship Leader, Eucharistic Visitor and Eucharistic Minister is to be led by the Priest-in-Charge or Deacon.    If you have questions, please feel free to be in touch with the Rev. Canon Michael Ambler or my Executive Assistant, Barbara Martin.  All application forms must be signed by the Priest-in-Charge (or the Senior Warden in absence of a Priest-in-Charge).  

  • Please do not renew licenses that have not yet expired.  Incomplete applications will not be accepted.   

  • Recent (within four years) Safe Church training is now required for all lay ministers.  Safe Church training has been updated and is now in two required parts.

“Part A” is the system we’ve been using for the past several years. The certificate is issued from “Praesidium”.

“Part B” is the state’s online course on Mandated Reporting. The certificate is issued by “State of Maine”.  

  • Applications for Lay Licensing (except for that of Preacher) are available online https://EpiscopalMaine.formstack.com/forms/laylicensing Paper applications are available upon request to Teresa Pinney ().   

  • This “Application for License to Preach” form is for preachers and contains additional application details.  For people who have been previously licensed to preach, it is not necessary to repeat the entire application process.  A short note reflecting on their ministry, and an example of a recent sermon or homily, is sufficient.  There is no online version for this application.  Please send completed applications to Barbara Martin (). 

  • The congregation will receive a certificate for each person in each area of ministry.  Please keep the original licenses, along with all Safe Church certificates, in a secure place in your parish office.  If individuals would like a copy of their license, please feel free to make a photocopy.  

  • Clergy should expect that from now on, the records the bishop will review during an episcopal Visitation will include records of Safe Church compliance.  

  • If you have questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact my office. Barbara Martin ( or 772-1953 x 125) will be happy to help. 

 

Commissioning
 

 

Canons

CANON 4: Of Licensed Ministries

Sec. 1 (a) A confirmed communicant in good standing or, in extraordinary circumstances, subject to guidelines established by the Bishop, a communicant in good standing, may be licensed by the Ecclesiastical Authority to serve as Pastoral Leader, Worship Leader, Preacher, Eucharistic Minister, Eucharistic Visitor, Evangelist, or Catechist. Requirements and guidelines for the selection, training,continuing education, and deployment of such persons, and the
duration of licenses shall be established by the Bishop in consultation with the Commission on Ministry.

          (b) The Presiding Bishop or the Bishop Suffragan for the Armed Forces may authorize a member of the Armed Forces to exercise one or more of these ministries in the Armed Forces in accordance with the provisions of this Canon. Requirements and guidelines for the selection, training, continuing education, and deployment of such persons shall be established by the Bishop granting the license.

Sec. 2 (a) The Member of the Clergy or other leader exercising oversight of the congregation or other community of faith may request the Ecclesiastical Authority with jurisdiction to license persons within that congregation or other community of faith to exercise such ministries. The license shall be issued for a period of time to be determined under Canon III.4.1(a) and may be renewed. The license may be revoked by the Ecclesiastical Authority upon
request of or upon notice to the Member of the Clergy or other leader exercising oversight of the congregation or other community of faith.

          (b) In renewing the license, the Ecclesiastical Authority shall consider the performance of the ministry by the person licensed, continuing education in the licensed area, and the endorsement of the Member of the Clergy or other leader exercising oversight of the congregation or other community of faith in which the person is serving.

         (c) A person licensed in any Diocese under the provisions of this Canon may serve in another congregation or other community of faith in the same or another Diocese only at the invitation of the Member of the Clergy or other leader exercising oversight, and with the consent of the Ecclesiastical Authority in whose jurisdiction the service will occur.

Sec. 3. A Pastoral Leader is a lay person authorized to exercise pastoral or administrative responsibility in a congregation under special circumstances, as defined by the Bishop.

Sec. 4. A Worship Leader is a lay person who regularly leads public worship under the direction of the Member of the Clergy or other leader exercising oversight of the congregation or other community of faith.

Sec. 5. A Preacher is a lay person authorized to preach. Persons so authorized shall only preach in congregations under the direction of the Member of the Clergy or other leader exercising oversight of the congregation or other community of faith.

Sec. 6. A Eucharistic Minister is a lay person authorized to administer the Consecrated Elements at a Celebration of Holy Eucharist. A Eucharistic Minister should normally act under the direction of a Deacon, if any, or otherwise, the Member of the Clergy or other leader exercising oversight of the congregation or other community of faith.

Sec. 7. A Eucharistic Visitor is a lay person authorized to take the Consecrated Elements in a timely manner following a Celebration of Holy Eucharist to members of the congregation who, by reason of illness or infirmity, were unable to be present at the Celebration. A Eucharistic Visitor should normally act under the direction of a Deacon, if any, or otherwise, the Member of the Clergy or other leader exercising oversight of the congregation or other community
of faith.

Sec. 8. A Catechist is a lay person authorized to prepare persons for Baptism, Confirmation, Reception, and the Reaffirmation of Baptismal Vows, and shall function under the direction of the Member of the Clergy or other leader exercising oversight of the congregation or other community of faith.
 
Sec. 9. An Evangelist is a lay person who presents the good news of Jesus Christ in such a way that people are led to receive Christ as Savior and follow Christ as Lord in the fellowship of the Church. An Evangelist assists with the community's ministry of evangelism in partnership with the Presbyter or other leader exercising oversight of the congregation, or as directed by the Bishop.
 

If you have questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us. Barbara Martin (772-1953 x 125) will be happy to help.  

143 State Street | Portland, ME 04101 | Phone: (207) 772-1953 |