Local preachers are members of the Methodist Church who have heard and answered God's call to lead worship and preach. Not generally employed by the church, typically they are lay people who offer their services freely.
Local Preachers conduct worship and preach routinely in the churches in their circuit or, by invitation, as "visiting preachers" in other circuits. It is estimated that approximately 70% of all Methodist services are conducted by Local Preachers.
Selection and training is a carefully graded and demanding exercise. Once training has been completed, the member becomes a fully accredited Local Preacher for life, and a full, active and indispensable member of the ministry team in the circuit.
At a special service in July 2015 attended by over 150 members of the circuit, no fewer than three members of the Thames Valley Circuit were authorised as fully accredited Local Preachers, having completed successfully all the stages of their training!
At a special service on 15th March 2020 the Circuit Superintendent, Rev Sonia Hicks (shown on the left) presented Long Service Awards to the Local Preachers shown here:
|from left to right:
And the following year on 12th September 2021, Rev Vicci Davidson likewise presented Long Service Awards to the Local Preachers to:
|Rev Dr Malcolm White
|60 years of Travel as a Methodist Minister
|70 years (thereby joining a very select company!)
If you would like to know more about Local Preachers and Worship Leaders, visit the Methodist Church website.
Worship Leaders are lay members of the Methodist Church who have received a call to assist in leading worship within their local church. After undergoing appropriate training, they are appointed to take part in various aspects of leading worship, offering to the preacher their gifts and talents plus their knowledge of the local congregation.
The combination of a Local Preacher, a Worship Leader and musicians can enhance worship for all.
The Leaders of Worship and Preachers Trust (LWPT) is an ecumenical Trust (Charity No. 1107967) which seeks to provide resources, information and support to preachers and leaders of worship in order to:
- Help them to grow and develop in knowledge, conviction and competence.
- Enable them to be in touch with other preachers and leaders of worship.
- Find out about the most recent developments affecting preaching and worship leading.
If you would like to know more about the work of LWPT, visit its website