Volunteerism | Michigan District, LCMS


Whether you call it:

Volunteer Ministries
or Lay Mobilization

many churches today are working to better help their members use their God-given gifts in ministry.

For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. ~2 Timothy 1:6

Contact Chad Woltemath at the District office if you have any questions.

The Gathering

Volunteer Directors Gathering meets three times a year on the first Thursday of February, May, and October. Their goal is to network and train assimilation, lay mobilization and membership directors on the subject of volunteerism.

You are invited to network with others involved in Volunteer and Outreach Ministries at “The Connections Gathering” on Thursday, October 6,2016 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Concordia University Ann Arbor. Cost is $10/person will cover lunch and administrative costs.

The topic: “When the church services the community.” For too long, church volunteerism has been primarily inwardly-focused.  As we join Jesus on His mission to our communities and aim our service outward, we have much to learn about determining community needs, service as the “sweet spot,” partnering with other organizations, when charity becomes toxic, and more.

Please RSVP to Linda Hollman at 734.522.6830 or LindaH@christoursavior.org with your name, email address and congregation name.


What is it and what does it include?

Whether you call it Volunteer Ministries, Assimilation, or Lay Mobilization, it all boils down to assisting believers to use their God-given gifts in service to their Lord. It Includes:

  • Helping new members, and long-time members, find a place to serve
  • Helping all members, become fully involved in the church, thus help to close the church's back door
  • Unleashing and empowering people to discover and use the gifts and talents God gave them
  • Recruiting for the Church's needs on the basis of finding the right person rather than simply filling slots with warm bodies
  • Trainings, supporting, and appreciating volunteers as they work

Resources for Congregations

What are we Reading These Days?

Many resources are available to help congregations improve the ways they recruit and support volunteers. Some of the most prominent books, tapes, programs, and workshops available are described here, along with sources of more information.

The Equipping Church by Sue Mallory.

Bruce Bugbee & Assoc., Network Ministries, Int’l, www.networkministries.com, 25108-B Marguerite Pkwy, Ste. 217, Mission Viejo, CA 92692, 800-588-8833, offers the “Network” program, which helps members discover their spiritual gifts, passion, and personal style and then get involved in ministry. The kit of teaching and implementation materials is $179.99. Individual participant guides are $10.99; quantity discounts are available. A book, “What You Do Best in the Body of Christ,” by Bruce Bugbee, $10.99, is written to “average believers” and is a simple explanation of the Network philosophy. Both resources, and many others, are also available through Willow Creek Association, www.willowcreek.com, P.O. Box 3188, Barrington, Illinois 60011-3188, 847-765-0070.

Every Member in Ministry, a 45-page book by John Ed Mathison (Discipleship Resources, P.O. Box 189, Nashville, TN 37202; 615-340-7284), outlines a plan for asking every member to make an annual commitment to ministry; includes importance of follow up, accountability, and training.

Energize, www.energizeinc.com, 5450 Wissahickon Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19144; 800-395-9800, has volunteer management resources for both secular settings, which, in many cases are helpful to churches, as well as resources specifically designed for churches. Two recommended resources:

How to Mobilize Church Volunteers by Marlene Wilson, $11.95. Already a “classic” in church volunteerism, this 156-page book discusses how sound principles for human resource management apply in the church.

No Surprises: Controlling Risks in Volunteer Programs, a 60-page book, $9.95. Churches can and do get sued for the actions of their volunteers. This short booklet presents a good overview of the reasons for considering risk management, practical guidance for dealing with the issues, and help creating and implementing policies and procedures.




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