From the GRR's Ministerial Standards and Policies

Affirming God's Call through...

Licensure

Churches may license individuals for a variety of reasons.

For example, licensure may affirm a specialized kind of ministry (home visitation, children’s ministry, etc) or be part of sending a student to seminary.

However, the Great Rivers Region does not treat licensure as a necessary pre-requisite f1r ordination.

Likewise, there are circumstances in which a “commission” rather than an ordination or license may be appropriate (e.g., a short-term mission trip). (Ministerial Standing, Policies and Procedures adopted by the GRR Ministry Board, October 2004)

Significance

  • A local church, well acquainted with the candidate, is making public the fact that the individual possesses the ability and the spiritual and emotional qualities necessary for ministry, and that the academic training required for ordination is being received.
  • By receiving the candidate under "watchcare," a local church and the Area Committee on Ministry are expected to give regular counsel to vocation and professional training. Such counseling should take place regularly and should be performed by the pastor, appropriate board or committee of the church, or the Area Committee on Ministry.

Procedure

  • The candidate makes known the desire to be licensed to the pastor and the appropriate committee of the church where personal membership is held. The candidate will then be interviewed to determine eligibility for licensing.
  • The church then requests the Area Committee on Ministry to meet with the candidate.
  • Upon the recommendation of the Area Committee on Ministry and the affirmative voted of the local church, recognition as a Licensed Candidate for Ordination shall be granted to the candidate.
  • The local church shall notify COMSAO of its action.

Duration

  • It shall be made clear that the license is granted in anticipation of ordination and that it is valid for a maximum of four years unless the congregation revokes it.