The West Ohio Conference takes seriously the process of Call and Discernment for every person pursuing the ministry design for one’s life. There are several ways that we live into the process of Call and Response.


Exploration is an opportunity for High School Students to start having meaningful conversations about call and what place ministry will play in their lives.

During the summer, we meet with groups of high school students to have Exploration Talks. The Talks involve sharing information, listening to students, and providing resources for possible next steps. Our goal is to make sure students know what the possibilities are for the future of ministry in the church, social service agencies, and more.

West Ohio Conference Ministry Intern Program

The Next Generation Leadership Ministry Intern Program is designed to assist college students who are interested in serving in a local church setting to further explore a call into ministry by working in a local church during a 10-week paid Internship. The Internship includes trips to the Ohio Methodist Seminaries and to at least one of the other 13 United Methodist Seminaries in the United States. Students are introduced at Annual Conference and provided many opportunities for networking and ministry engagement to help them in their journey.

The Candidacy Summit Retreat

The Candidacy Summit Retreat is offered twice annually, in January and July. The Summit is for persons who have expressed a desire to take the next steps in discerning call and pursuing credentialed ministry. The Candidates for the Summit must be recommended by their District Superintendent. Participants in the Summit are set up with a group and 1-2 Mentors to lead them through the Candidacy Guidebook. While at the Summit, there are workshops for Ministry and the Education requirements and a Call Panel with experienced Elder, Deacon, Local Pastor, and Certified Lay Ministry Representatives.


Crucible is a two-year, eight-session clergy formation and skill development process, created by the West Ohio Conference in early 2011. Over 100 pastors, including all current provisional clergy, are enrolled in one of three active classes, which begin each Fall. Students range from those who have been in ministry 20+ years to our newest commissioned leaders. Students in each class have been integrating principles learned in Crucible and are making a significant impact on their pastoral leadership.

Local Pastor's Licensing School

The licensed local pastor is licensed for pastoral ministry and performs the duties of a pastor in the ministry context to which they are appointed. They may perform proclamation of the Word, lead worship and liturgy, administer the sacraments of Baptism and Holy Communion, as well as the services of marriage, burial, confirmation, and membership reception. Licensing School takes place twice annually in partnership with the East Ohio Conference, United Methodist Church.

Who Can I Talk to About...

Clergy Leadership Formation
  • United Methodist Foundation of West Ohio