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Archbishop's Appeal

The Archbishop’s Appeal is the annual fundraising campaign that provides supplemental financial assistance to institutions, programs and ministries affiliated with the Catholic Church throughout the Archdiocese of San Antonio.

Learn More about the Archbishop’s Appeal Make a Donation to the Archbishop’s Appeal.
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  • 3,000,000
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  • 1,000,000


Lay Ecclesial Ministry

Institute for Lay Ecclesial Ministry and Service: Lay Ecclesial Ministry Formation

Institute for Lay Ecclesial Ministry and Service:
The Art of Forming Those Called to Ministry

All the baptized, in their particular contexts, are called to holiness to transform the world by witnessing the Lord they have encountered. Many, moved by the Spirit, discern to respond to this call to ministry (servitium) in their local parishes as Lay Ecclesial Ministers. The Church has used the term Lay Ecclesial Ministry because it reflects key elements of the specific lay vocation. The ministry is Lay for it is rooted in our baptismal call, we respond as lay women and men. The ministry is Ecclesial for it is discerned and appointed by the local shepherd, the Archbishop, to serve in close collaboration with the pastor and parish leadership to serve in communion for mission. It is ministry for it expresses the continuous mission of Christ through the Church. Parish ministers, while learning the basis of their faith, ultimately form their conscience to positively affect their ministerial planning for their specific areas of ministry and service.

Five Components Guiding Our Mission

Providing a formation that responds to the hunger of God’s People

Developing a comprehensive, systematic, consistent, and ongoing formation

Ensuring accessibility of formation that meets the needs of those in rural and urban areas

Helping leaders to strengthen their ministerial identities as witnesses of the Culture of Encuentro

Identifying intentional partnerships with local and national entities

Lay Ecclesial Ministry and the Archdiocese of San Antonio

The term Lay Ecclesial Ministry is a general term that may include any number of roles. In the Archdiocese of San Antonio, these initially include:

Catechetical Leaders (Director/ Coordinator in Religious Education/Catechesis)

Youth Ministers (Director/Coordinator Youth, Young Adult, or Campus Ministry)

Liturgical Ministers (Director/Coordinator of Worship, Liturgy)

Marriage and Family Life Ministers (Director/Coordinator of Marriage/ Family Life)

Pastoral Ministers (Director/Coordinator of Multiple Ministries)

Course Requirements

Philosophy Course is pre-required for Theological Coursework

Philosophy in the Catholic Tradition

Theological Courses

Taken together with candidates for the Diaconate program

Catholic Biblical Interpretation: Old Testament

Catholic Biblical Interpretation: New Testament

Jesus Christ: God and Man (Christology)


Sacramental Theology: The Faith Celebrated

Moral Theology: The Faith Lived

History of the Catholic Church

Ministry Practicum Courses

Intercultural Competencies for Pastoral Ministry

Elective (Ministry-specific)

Elective (Ministry-specific)

Informational Brochure

For all the details about the Lay Ecclesial Ministry Formation Program, click here to download the brochure (PDF).

This project is funded by the generous donors of the Archbishop's Appeal

General Statement

The Institute for Lay Ecclesial Ministry and Service, through the Parish Ministry Formation program, provides comprehensive pastoral formation for those who currently serve or seek to be involved in ministries and services in the Church. This program seeks to ensure that parish ministers have foundational knowledge and understanding of the teachings of the Catholic Church. For more information for these courses please visit the  Parish Ministry Formation page.

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