Lay Speaking Ministries plans '07 schools


Mississippi Conference Lay Speaking Ministries will sponsor three Leadership Schools in 2007. The first is coming up March 16-17 at Camp Wesley Pines in Gallman. 

Richard Henley, East Jackson District director of Lay Speaking, will teach the Basic Lay Speaking course. Three advanced courses will be offered: 

  • “Lay Speakers Interpret to Others Our United Methodist Heritage,” Bonnie Dillon, instructor. This course introduces the history, beliefs, mission and organization of The United Methodist Church. Gain a better understanding of the distinctive traditions and emphases of United Methodists.
  • “Lay Speakers Lead in Stewardship,” Phillip Heidelberg, instructor. This course helps participants develop a holistic understanding of stewardship, examine their own gifts and learn ways to assist others in identifying theirs.
  • “From Your Heart to Theirs: Delivering the Effective Sermon,” Tony Franks, instructor. This course, limited to 14 students, provides participants with information and instruction in developing several kinds of sermons and allows them the option of presenting a brief sermon for evaluation. The content will also cover use of the United Methodist Hymnal as well as storytelling and planning worship services. 

Other schools will be Aug. 10-11 at Wood Institute in Mathiston and Oct. 5-6 at Camp Lake Stephens in Oxford. At each school, the basic course and three advanced courses will be offered. 

Registration forms are available from the district office. Contact the conference office, 601-354-0515. Fees are $75 if you need lodging or $55 for commuters. Meals and textbooks are included in the fee. Pre-registration deadline is two weeks prior to each school. On-site registration fees increase to $100 and $80, respectively, and must be paid with cash or money order. 

Completing the basic course is necessary to be a local church lay speaker. Certified lay speakers must complete the basic course and one advanced course, then complete an advanced course every three years to maintain certification.