Training For Lay Preachers


Dear Friends in Christ,

Eastern and Western Michigan will be offering training for lay preachers seeking to get licensed in our dioceses. The courses take place alongside our Academy for Vocational Leadership. If you feel called to serve as a lay preacher, please speak with your priest (or senior warden if your congregation is without a priest) and, with their approval, complete the application by the August 15th deadline.

To complete the classwork in order to receive a license, the lay preacher is required to take one year of Bible instruction and one year of Homiletics formation. These may be completed by participating in both classes in one academic year or by taking Bible this year and Homiletics next year.

This formation expectation is a change for new preaching licenses in Western Michigan. Those previously licensed in Western Michigan will be expected to have completed some form of continuing education (on Scripture or homiletics) before their license will be renewed in December. You are encouraged to consider participating in the Academy programs as a means of completing this requirement and further equipping oneself for this ministry.

The 2022-23 school year will be a mixture of in-person at the St. Francis Retreat Center in DeWitt and online via Zoom. The cost to participate in both classes is $1,000 (or Bible only for $720). During the weekend, participants interact with Academy students at meals, worship, and break times. Each Saturday follows the same pattern, with the Bible course taught from 9:30-3:30pm and Homiletics taught from 7-9pm. Please read below for dates.

If you have any questions, please contact me at or by phone at 810-300-9177.


The Rev. Canon Dr. Tracie Little
Coordinator, The Academy for Vocational Leadership
Canon to the Ordinary, The Episcopal Diocese of Eastern Michigan


A previous graduating class of the Academy – Kelly Scheu (Diocese of Michigan), the Rev. Nancy Mayhew (St. Alban’s, Bay City), the Rev. Tom Manney (St. Paul’s, Bad Axe and St. John’s, Dryden), and the Rev. Wendy Brown (St. John’s, Charlotte).

The Academy for Vocational Leadership is a bi-diocesan program of formation, including courses for laity (like the preaching series), and a three-year program of preparation for the diaconate or priesthood. Courses are taught by seminary faculty from the Iona Collaborative, a program of the Seminary of the Southwest in Austin, TX, with discussions and coursework directed by local faculty.

Learn more about the Academy on our websites – Eastern Michigan and Western Michigan.

THE 2022-23 DATES

September 10, 2022 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt
October 15, 2022 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt
November 12 via Zoom
December 10, 2022 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt
January 21, 2023 via Zoom
February 18, 2023 via Zoom
March 25, 2023 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt
April 15, 2023 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt
May 13, 2023 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt
June 10, 2023 at The St. Francis Retreat Center in Dewitt