Thank you for your interest in this formation opportunity! We hope that this will be a grace-filled new step in your personal
faith development, as well as a generous gift in your ministry to your parish and the whole Church of Scranton.

We recognize that some applicants will bring years of experience in certain aspects of parish ministry, and others will be just beginning their involvement. It is important that you have adequate information to assist you in discerning God’s call for you in your ministry.  After perusing the Diocesan Certificate in Lay Ministry Program Overview, the application process includes these steps:

  1. Application Form  – Due September 15 for the group starting in Fall, or December 15
    for the group starting in Winter;
  2. Letter of Intent – tell us about yourself, your interest in this program, and how you
    hope to grow;
  3. Recommendations – from three persons – we prefer one letter be from your
    pastor/parish life coordinator. Other recommendations could be from fellow pastoral ministers, or coworkers who know you well, can speak to your gifts, and how you would benefit from the formation
  4. Background Check and Safe Environment Training
  5. “Readiness for Ministry” Self-Assessment (just for your own review as you begin the process);
  6. Ministry Formation Learning Agreement (this includes summary of all components for the
    Diocesan Certificate in Lay Ministry, as well as the financial commitment involved)

Once the completed application is submitted to the Office for Parish Life, a member of our Ministry Formation Team will contact you regarding the status of your application, and to discuss or clarify your questions about the certificate process. During this time, the applicant may also be asked to elaborate on formation experiences they have already completed in recent years.

We recommend that you visit the website for the University of Dayton’s Virtual Learning Community for Faith Formation—VLCFF ( through whom we offer the online component of our certificate process—and view their video: “Overview of Virtual Learning Community for Faith Formation.”

While an accelerated process is possible for some certificate candidates, we expect most participants to pursue this Diocesan Certificate in Lay Ministry across a three-year term. There are many timing options, so be assured that we can work with your particular needs and interests.

Please feel free to call with questions or needs (570-207-2213). You are also invited to share this information with others you believe will be interested in Formation for Servant Leadership.

Our prayers are with you as you begin this journey, and we hope to accompany you as we grow in faith together!

Peace and good,
Kitty Scanlan
Coordinator for Lay Ministry Formation
Office for Parish Life