I took the basic lay speaking course at Hoxie United Methodist Church in Kansas in 1974. Two years later, I took an advanced course at Camp Lakeside United Methodist Center near Scott City, Kansas. Since that time, lay speaking has been a very rewarding part of my Christian life.
For the past approximately 20 years, I have worked on the Hay/Dodge City Lay Servant Committee and have been teaching the basic course for some time. I share the teaching duties with Ken Beougher of Bird City United Methodist Church.
We have a very upbeat, positive class. Most of our students continue by going to advanced classes, and several have gone into full-time ministry. We have had as many as 16 in a basic class and 30 in advanced classes. Of course we have had smaller numbers also. In any case each class has been very special to me.
The Hays and Dodge City districts have worked together for years to promote Lay Servant Ministries and plan our annual schools. Each school is conducted in March, usually the third weekend. We begin on Friday evening at 6:30 p.m. with worship and conduct class until about 10 p.m. We have class time from 8:30 a.m. Saturday until noon and then 1 p.m. until 4:30 p.m., at which time closing worship is led by the Basic Class.
Basic and advanced classes are always offered at our schools. Advanced course curricula is varied each year, so that this class has the opportunity to take several classes on different topics.
We plan to have classes again in March 2016 at Camp Lakeside United Methodist Center and hope you can join us.
To see more training opportunities across the conference, check out the right-hand column at http://www.greatplainsumc.org/layservantministries.
Lay Servant Ministries participants are writing a bi-monthly blog on a rotating basis. This blog was written by James Thompson, who serves on the Hays/Dodge City Districts Lay Servant Committee.