Over 400 laity have been certified for ministerial leadership in parish, diocesan and other Catholic ministerial settings since 1985.
In November 2005, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops approved and published "Co-Workers in the Vineyard of the Lord: A Resource for Guiding the Development of Lay Ecclesial Ministry" which acknowledges and affirms the place of lay ecclesial ministers in the life of the Church in the United States. This document also provides greater clarity to the roles fulfilled by lay ecclesial ministers and the essential elements of formation of persons, including vowed religious, who serve in these varied roles.
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