A local minister is a lay member of the Church of the Nazarene whom the local church board has licensed for ministry, under the pastor’s direction, and as opportunity affords, thus providing for the demonstration, employment, and development of ministerial gifts and usefulness. He or she is entering into a process of lifelong learning.
Section: The Local Minister
Any member of the Church of the Nazarene who feels called of God to preach or to pursue lifetime ministry through the church may be licensed as a local minister for one year by the church board of a local church having an ordained minister as pastor, upon the pastor’s recommendation; or by the church board of a local church not having an ordained minister as pastor, if the granting of license is recommended by the pastor and approved by the district superintendent. The candidate must first be examined as to his or her personal experience of salvation, knowledge of the doctrines of the Bible, and the order of the church; he or she must also demonstrate that the call is evidenced by grace, gifts, and usefulness. He or she shall undergo an appropriate background check administered by the local church. A local minister shall make a report to the local church at its annual church meetings. (113.9, 129.12, 211.12)
The church board shall issue to each local minister a license signed by the pastor and the secretary of the church board. Where a church is supplied by a person who does not have a district license, that person may be issued a local minister’s license, or the renewal of license, by the District Advisory Board upon the recommendation of the district superintendent. (211.12, 225.13)
The license of a local minister may be renewed by a local church board having an elder as pastor, upon the recommendation of the pastor; or renewed by a local church board not having an elder as pastor, provided that the renewal of license is recommended by the pastor and approved by the district superintendent. (129.12, 211.12)
Local ministers shall pursue a validated course of study for ministers under the direction of the District Ministerial Studies Board. Local license cannot be renewed after two years without the written approval of the district superintendent if the local minister has not completed at least two courses in the required studies in a validated course of study.
A local minister, having served in that relation for at least one full year, and having passed the necessary studies, may be recommended by the church board to the district assembly for minister’s license; but, if not received, he or she shall sustain his or her former relation. (129.12, 529, 532.1)
A local minister who has been appointed as supply pastor must be approved by the District Ministerial Credentials Board or District Board of Ministry if he or she continues this service after the district assembly following the appointment. (212, 231.5, 524)
A local minister shall not be eligible to administer the sacraments of baptism and the Lord’s Supper, and shall not officiate at marriages. (532.7)