door of significant opportunity has just opened - the purpose of this
letter is to give you enough information so you can invite the right men
and women to walk through the doorway.
At our recent Southeastern District Convention, delegates passed Resolution TP-05-15-01A To Recommend Standardized Training of Licensed Lay Deacons.
That resolution calls for the SED to "study and recommend a process to
strengthen the training of licensed lay deacons, and to establish
education and training for those providing pastoral care to neighborhood
ministries." This standardized training (Concordia Lay Deacon Program)
has long been offered through Concordia College - New York (Bronxville)
and is now ready to be offered to laity from the SED.
of the ten courses in this program is offered online to those students
accepted into the program. They each need the approval of their pastor,
congregation, and the SED Board of Directors. Each course costs $200,
for a total of $2000. Partial scholarships will be available through the
first class begins on Tuesday, September 8, 2015 - so we need to move
rapidly to get applicants accepted in the Lay Deacon Program. The list
of classes and a description of the program can be found on our website.
completing the ten courses and an internship will receive a Concordia
Lay Deacon certificate from the university, will work under the
supervision of the pastor with the support and affirmation of their
respective congregation. It is important to note: these individuals are
not rostered workers of the LCMS.
Why is this so important? There are two significant reasons:
move forward in an effort to expand the mission to the people living in
3,878 zip codes across the SED, the fact is that we will need
mission-hearted, theologically-formed lay people and congregations to
support the effort. We need to have as many people with theological
training as possible.
have congregations right now who cannot afford a pastor. This Deacon
Program opens the door for these congregations to raise up people from
their midst to receive theological training and help ensure that these
congregations will continue to receive Word and Sacrament ministry.
main goal is to get the information to you so you can ask gifted laity
to pray about this possibility. We are finalizing the application
process for acceptance to the program but at this time we are accepting
names of participants who could start the academic portion in September.
To submit a name for the September class please refer the applicant to our website at http://se.lcms.org/deacon to complete Part I. (This form allows participants to sign up for the first class.)
believe the Lord is providing this opportunity to us at this time as a
way of honoring your decision to be an LCMS District engaged in His
mission. This is an Acts 6 moment - where the church identified people
"full of the Spirit and wisdom." The Word of the Lord grew through the
martyrdom of Stephen and the amazing work of Philip. May it be so among