Magazine article U.S. Catholic

Why Lay Ministry Formation?

Magazine article U.S. Catholic

Why Lay Ministry Formation?

Article excerpt

WHY LAY MINISTRY FORMATION?

By Father Joseph T. Merkt (Gianiculum Press, 2012)

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In the early church, ministers were called forth from the community, chosen because of their personal qualities and abilities. Today more than 50,000 women and men serve as lay ecclesial ministers, and many more serve in varied ministerial roles. The graying of these cohorts, however, is a frequently mentioned concern. The question of how in our day to call forth new lay ministers is increasingly important. Why Lay Ministry Formation? is an excellent resource for this purpose.

Designed as an interactive guide for someone considering participation in a formation program, Joseph Merkt invites readers into a process of discernment, q-he personal experience of the individual and the tradition of the church are the focus of short prayerful exercises throughout. In addition, stories of several lay ministers (notably of varied cultural backgrounds and life experiences) highlight diverse paths and different hesitations, sounding a note of reality. …

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