• Do you have a desire to discern where God is already at work within your life context/ ministry and to join God there?
  • Are you hearing a call to grow deeper in ministry that you would like to explore in a tangible way?
  • Is your church in transition with a need for lay people to be empowered and equipped for leadership roles?

Maybe that person is YOU?


Lay Ministry Formation (LMF) is a 2-year, cohort-based educational and training program of the Northwest Washington Synod. It is especially designed for lay leaders who wish to deepen their sense of God’s call to ministry. Participants will identify their own passionate call to ministry, and will be invited into spiritual reflection of it through four modules within the 2-year curriculum: (1) Living in the Spirit, (2) Living in the Church, (3) Living in the World, and (4) Leadership in God’s World.   


This is a Certificate program that prepares participants to learn, discuss, experiment, and wrestle with what it means to be lay leaders in their church or vocational context. Whether their leadership context is within children/youth ministry, music ministry, social justice, equity and inclusion, small group leadership, care giving, chaplaincy, evangelism, etc...this program will better prepare participants to discern the movement of God in that context, and to join in God's mission.   Strong candidates for the program include:

  • Those longing for quality discussion within a nurturing environment of curious learning
  • Life-long learners interested in gaining broader perspectives in the areas of theological and biblical reflection within the context of real-life practical concerns
  • Leaders who strive to understand and articulate their own growing understanding of God's calling
  • Those who wish to more creatively serve Christ's church and/or God's broader communities in new ways

The learning approach of LMF celebrates that all participants come with varied life and ministry experiences, including understandings of God, church and the world. We welcome a variety of backgrounds and those who wish to join a conversation among divergent perspectives.  

* This program, while open to all lay leaders, is also required for those seeking to become a Synodically Authorized Lay Minister (SALM), i.e. those willing to serve local churches as lay ministers as authorized by the Office of the Bishop.   


4 Topic Modules Year One: 

Year One:

  • Module 1: The God of God’s Mission
  • Module 2: The Church of God’s Mission 

Year Two: 

  • Module 3: The Horizons of God’s Mission
  • Module 4: Leadership in God’s Mission

Cohorts and Course Work: 

  • Cohorts will include 8-12 persons on a guided learning journey throughout the 2-year process. Cohorts will follow a hybrid model of learning that includes in-person retreats and monthly zoom conversations. Cohorts will also navigate their learning using Mighty Networks, an online learning platform.   
  • Each module will include readings, videos, conversational prompts, and action-reflection learning exercises. (Action-reflection learning involves occasional opportunities for participants to involve small groups of people from their own local context, in order to develop leadership skills and deepen their understanding of doing ministry in context.)  
  • The course work will be a combination of thoughtful written reflections on readings and videos and in mutual conversation with one another. Apart from retreats and online zoom conversations, participants are expected to do 8-10 hours of reading, and/or action-reflection work per month.     

In-Person Retreats:

  • Each year participants will attend 4 in-person retreats held on Saturdays from 9am-2pm.
  • Dates to be announced soon.

*Please know that as the need arises accommodations will be made for participants whose language is other than English.  


$750/person/year – Payment may be made either in full or in two installments over the course of the year, prior to the beginning of each module. Payment #1 due Sept. 2024; Payment 2 due Jan. 2025. We encourage sponsoring congregations and participants to collaborate in figuring out financial means for participation in the program. Sponsorships and financial aid is available for those seeking assistance. Please contact live@lutheransnw.org for more information. 


  • Apply online using this linked form.
  • For further details, please email either Rev. Dr. David Hahn or Rev. Andy Yee
  • Applications Due Monday, September 2.
  • Please email completed applications to Rev. Andy Yee.
  • Once an application has been submitted, participants will be contacted with further details about resources, cohort expectations and learning procedures.