What is the LPA program?
In 1997 the Montana Synod established a program of training and equipping qualified lay persons for congregational-based ministries of preaching, sacraments and worship leadership, and where appropriate, providing leadership for bible study, catechetical instruction, visitation and spiritual growth.
The ELCA, through its Vocation and Education Program Unit, recognizes that certain congregations are in situation where – by reason of geography or economics – they find it impossible to support the ministry of a full time or part time ordained pastor. Thus the church makes provision for training and approving “Synodically Authorized Ministers” or “Lay Pastoral Associates”. In most instances these persons will already be members of the congregations to be served. But they also may be persons residing in areas adjacent to the communities where the ministry will be conducted. In either case, however, Lay Pastoral Associates serve at the request of the bishop and are under the supervision of an ordained pastor.
The Montana Synod and First Lutheran Church encourage people to participate in the LPA training as preparation for lay preaching, teaching and leading.
First Lutheran Church currently has thre LPAs:
And one LPA in training - Shane Reed
If you have any interest in the program please contact the Montana Synod website