The Role

Designated lay ministers (DLMs) are presbytery-accountable lay ministers who accept a leadership role for defined periods of time and for specific forms of service. Leadership roles may include the work of preaching, worship, sacrament, pastoral care, education, or other forms of service. Designated lay ministers apply to their Conference for a licence to administer the sacraments if it is part of their ministry. This role is by appointment.


There are approximately 200 designated lay ministers in the United Church. They work in these types of settings:

  • solo ministry in a congregation
  • team ministry in a congregation
  • community ministry at a local pastoral charge

Policy and Procedures

Current policy and procedures related to designated lay ministers are contained in the Designated Lay Ministers resource found under Downloads, below.


The Designated Lay Ministry Diploma Program is offered through St. Andrew's College, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, or those preparing for ministry in a Native Ministry setting can study at the Sandy-Saulteaux Spiritual Centre.