Some of you might be wondering what the class is that I attend every week. It is a two year program that is sponsored by our Diocese. From the website 'The Diocese of Ogdensburg encourages all parishioners who are interested in learning more about their faith and helping in their parish to inquire'. And 'Lay Ministers are now a vital part of the parish pastoral teams. The Formation for Ministry program is designed to help candidate's acquire the necessary skills to contribute effectively to parish ministry and assist the pastor with the work of the parish.'
So since I already do a lot of work for our parish, I thought I would go ahead and go through the process. I was also encouraged by a sweet lady and friend who went through the last Formation program.
I have learned so much about this faith (that I am a convert to) and have met some really great people through this program. People who I will consider friends for the rest of my life. I have learned so much more than I expected. The classes have built on what I learned in my RCIA classes and I have discovered much more depth to the richness and fullness of the Catholic Church.
Commissioning will be in June 2013 and I will definitely miss the class and the fellowship.
**edit June 30, 2012
My commissioning for lay ministry is today. I choose ‘catechetical leadership’ as my ministry. So many people are asking what this is so I am adding the following clarifications.
Lay ministers serve in many different capacities; their duties can vary according to their denomination. According to the Catholic Bishops of the United States, lay ministers are "co-workers in the vineyard of the Lord."
Lay ecclesial ministry is the term adopted by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops to identify the relatively new category of pastoral ministers in the Catholic Church who serve the Church but are not ordained.
According to the USCCB, this ecclesial ministry includes:
• Authorization of the hierarchy to serve publicly in the local Church
• Leadership in a particular area of ministry
• Close mutual collaboration with the pastoral ministry of bishops, priests, and deacons
• Preparation and formation appropriate to the level of responsibilities that are assigned to them including; human, spiritual, pastoral, and theological dimensions.