The Lay Academy was a collaborative program of the Lutheran Theological Seminary and four Western Synods of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC), that sought to provide continuing education opportunities for lay people and for those being prepared for lay leadership. The establishment of the Lay Academy came in response to the leadership needs of congregations and the interest expressed by lay people for a comprehensive program of study.

In addition to empowering lay people for ministry in their daily life, the goal was to assist the church in educating lay and local leaders in under-served areas for ministry. This commitment led to the creation of the Leading In Faith Today (LIFT) curriculum.

LIFT currently consists of 21 courses (over 82 hours of content) in the study areas of Leadership for Mission, Foundations of Ministry (Theology, Scripture, History of Christianity) and Practical Ministry (Worship, Preaching). Courses were developed to meet the interests and needs of the broader church as well as to fulfill the requirements of those officially appointed as Lay ministers or leaders in the Lutheran and Anglican traditions.

The courses run from 2 to 6 hours in length and are designed for a lay person to study with the support of a pastor or mentor recommended by their Synod or Diocese Bishop. There are both instructor and student manuals, along with a mentoring guide. For more information see our FAQ section.