Lay Ministers and Readers

Authorised Lay Ministers (ALMs) and Licensed Lay Ministers (LLMs or Readers) are vital roles in the Church, set apart to bring defined ministry support to their parish.


They are highly valued in the Diocese of Durham and have a crucial part in the success of the diocesan strategy.

In the coming months, there will be a renewed focus on the training, development, support and resources available to lay ministers, led by the Ven Libby Wilkinson, Archdeacon of Durham. 

She said: “I can’t overstate the importance of lay people in amplifying the ministry of the Church in this region. Licensed and Authorised Lay Ministers have a very particular calling, and we want to ensure they can fully release that call with a renewed approach to lay ministry development. I’m really excited about our new vision for this and look forward to sharing more about that later in 2022.”


What are LLMs and ALMs?

ALMs are trained lay people, active in church life, who have a particular vocation, special interest or skill that can be an integral part of their church’s ministry.
ALMs are nominated by their incumbent and Parochial Church Council (PCC) to be trained and equipped in preparation for being ‘commissioned’ by the Bishop. After this service, they will carry out an agreed ministry role within their local parish context.

LLMs, or Readers, are licensed by their Bishop to a teaching and preaching ministry, both within the church and outside its traditional boundaries. Called by God and trained in theology, they bring their life experience, skills and knowledge to their Christian service. LLMs often have a role in equipping other Christians to grow as disciples in their places of daily living.

Am I called to lay ministry?

If you think God may be calling you to one of these ministries, talk to your parish priest in the first instance, who can help you discern your call and advise on next steps.

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