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Member in Discernment

When a member of a United Church of Christ (UCC) congregation begins to feel called to ordained ministry, there is a formal discernment process that connects them both to the Local Church and the Wider Church. They work with both their Local Church and a Wider Church Committee dedicated to working with those in discernment. A member of a Local Church who is approved by an Association’s or Conference’s Committee on Ministry to enter a discernment relationship towards ordination is called a Member in Discernment (MID).

Individuals are engaged in various steps of the MID process until they both have been approved for ordination and have received a call to serve a UCC congregation or ministry setting. At that time, an ordination service is scheduled and the whole of the Church invited to participate in ordaining the person to ministry in and on behalf of the UCC.

Ordained Ministers are authorized to serve and to lead on behalf of the UCC and the Church Universal, a ministry that encompasses the fullest range of leadership ministries: priestly and prophetic, representative and servant. They are called to embody the love of God for the world and to proclaim the good news on behalf of the Church, personally and publicly pointing the Church to its dependence on Jesus Christ, the source of its faith, mission, and unity.

The policies and practices for the MID Process are specific to the Conference and the Covenanting Committee on Ministry. Click below to learn more about the MID process and to access necessary documents. When submitting your MID application, please compile all forms into a single PDF document and send it as one file.

    Essential Member in Discernment Resources

    UCC History, Polity, and Theology

    Explore more about what it is to be the UCC and enroll in a course that will meet the requirements for Member in Discernment.

    Local Church Discernment Team Resources

    Find resources to help equip the Local Church for discernment alongside the candidate.

    The Marks of Faithful and Effective Authorized Ministers of the UCC

    An outline of the complex combination of talents, understandings, and skills needed for ministerial leadership in the United Church of Christ.

    UCC Ministerial Code

    All persons with ministerial standing in the United Church of Christ are expected to abide by the UCC Ministerial Code.

    Journaling the Journey

    A creative workbook for engaging and reflecting upon the Marks of Faithful and Effective Authorized Ministers in one’s own ministry.

    Discernment Travelogue

    A resource for spiritual journeys, discernment, and decisions made along the way. Copies are also available through the conference office.

    Marks Rubric

    An assessment tool for those in discernment, their mentors, and committees. The tool uses the Marks for discernment in reflecting on formation for ministry and identifying areas for further growth.

    Initial Background Checks for Candidates for Ministry

    Members in Discernment and those Seeking Privilege of call may use this form to complete their initial background check at the beginning of their discernment processes.