The Candidacy Process

Welcome to Candidacy—A process for confirming the call to ministry

Print out the Candidacy Checklist here and use it to check off the steps of your process.

Step 1: Talk to your United Methodist pastor or ministry leader about your call.

Step 2: Write your Call Statement.

Step 3: Contact your District Superintendent (DS) to discuss your Call Statement. Print out Contact List here.

Step 4: Introduce yourself to the Chair of your District Committee on Ordained Ministry (DCOM). See above Contact List.

Step 5: Send Biographical Form 102 along with your Call Statement to your DCOM Chair and the candidacy registrar, Rev. Dr. Jay Harris (jharris@sgaumc.com). Direct any questions you have about the process to his email.

Step 6: Send the following items to the “Office of Ministerial Services, P.O. Box 18149, Macon, GA 31209.”

Next Steps (These will be accomplished in varying order depending upon scheduling possibilities.)

  • Attend next Ministry Orientation and Candidacy Group. (Jay Harris will have information.)
  • Get your local church’s approval and recommendation of your candidacy. This happens in two parts:

First, interview with your Pastor-Parish Relations Committee (PPRC). Arrange with your pastor a meeting of the PPRC to discuss your call and get their recommendation. For the meeting, prepare written answers to John Wesley’s questions: 1) Do you know God as a pardoning God? Have you the love of God abiding in you? Do you desire nothing but God? Are you holy in all manner of conversation? 2) Have you gifts, as well as evidence of God’s grace, for the work? Have you a clear, sound understanding; a right judgment in the things of God; a just conception of salvation by faith? Do you speak justly, readily, and clearly? 3) Have you fruit? Have you been truly convinced of sin and converted to God, and are believers edified by your service?

Second, get your Charge Conference’s approval. Ask your pastor to arrange with the DS a Charge Conference where the members will consider the PPRC’s recommendation. For your approval a three-fourths vote by written ballot is needed. Make sure that the pastor has a “Form 104: Declaration of Candidacy” ready for the Charge Conference and that the DS signs it.  Send to Dr. Harris’ email and to your DCOM Chair.

  • Schedule and complete the Psychological Assessment. The cost for the assessment is $600. Although this is to be done at the expense of the candidate, your sponsoring church often helps with the cost if they are aware of your need. Contact: Susan F. Davenport, Ph.D., Psychological Offices, 121 Carl Vinson Parkway, Warner Robins, GA 31088; Telephone: 478-922-2365. Bring church checks, district checks, certified checks, money orders, or credit cards (no personal checks).  (After your examination and interview with Dr. Davenport, please allow several weeks to receive your report. Please read it carefully. Often, there is a recommendation for a consultation with Rev. Deborah Wight-Knight, our conference pastoral counselor. If so, please call her office (478-929-1032) at your earliest convenience to schedule a consultation. Her role is to work together with you to help you understand yourself more fully in relationship to your history, your emotional and psychological makeup, and your gifts and graces for ministry.)
  • If you have had a divorce, send BOTH the divorce petition(s) and decree(s) to Dr. Harris and your DCOM Chair.
  • Access Form 103: Medical Form, fill out Part 1 regarding your medical history, schedule a physical examination, and have your physician complete Part 2 of the form. Send to Dr. Harris and your DCOM Chair.
  • Have official college and/or seminary transcripts sent to Dr. Harris.
  • Prepare your written responses to the following: 1) your most formative experiences of the Christian life; 2) God’s call to ministry and the role of the church in your call; 3) your beliefs as a Christian; 4) your gifts for ministry; 5) your present understanding of your call to ministry as elder, deacon or licensed ministry; and 6) your support systems. Send to Dr. Harris and your DCOM Chair.

LAST STEP WHEN ALL THE ABOVE IS COMPLETED: Contact the Chair of your District Committee on Ordained Ministry (DCOM) to get on the agenda of their next meeting for their final approval for you to become a certified candidate for ministry so you can proceed to seminary or the next Licensing School.