What is an Elder in the UMC?

Elders are ordained ministers who have been found by the church to be of sound learning, of Christian character, possessing the necessary gifts and evidence of God’s grace, and whose call by God to ordination has been confirmed by the Church.


Called and Set Apart for a Ministry of Service

Elders are ordained to a lifetime ministry of Word, Sacrament, Order and Service. They are authorized to preach and teach the word of God, to provide pastoral care and counsel, to administer the sacraments of baptism and Holy Communion and to order the life of the Church for service in mission and ministry.

The servant leadership of the elder, in both parish and extension ministries is expressed by leading the people of God in worship and prayer, by leading persons to faith in Jesus Christ, by exercising pastoral supervision, and by ordering the Church in mission in the world.

Elders in Full Connection offer themselves without reserve to be appointed and to serve, after consultation, as the appointive authority may determine.

As member of the Order of Elder, all elders are in covenant with all other elders in the annual conference and shall participate in the life of their order.


Rev. Derek Jacobs
Chair of Order, North Texas Conference
Email: [email protected]