Living God's Love Values - Generosity, Joy, Imagination and Courage
Living God's Love Values - Generosity, Joy, Imagination and Courage

Lay Leaders of Youth and Children (LLYC)

Lay Leader of Youth and Children (LLYC) is an important role, which, along with ordained and Reader ministry, seeks to ensure that the spirituality of children and young people is respected and nurtured, and that children and young people are fully included in the ministry and mission of the church. They seek to support those who care for children and young people, encouraging faith at home, and providing pastoral support for the struggles and joys of child-rearing.

On completion of the course they will receive a letter of permission from the Bishop recognising them as Lay Leaders of Youth and Children in their parish church. The commissioning is formally marked by the Incumbent in one of the regular services in the benefice.

Outline of Sessions

Session 1: Theology of childhood and adolescence, spiritual development
This session looks at the role of children and young people in the Bible, and what that means for our ministry, as well as looking at the main theories of spiritual development.

Session 2: Family ministry
In this session we will consider how families can participate in worship together and how we can support parents, grandparents and carers in the important role they play in the faith development of children and young people.

Session 3: Under-5s
46% of adult Christians say they came to faith before the age of five. This age group provides special opportunities to begin the journey of Christian faith – we will look especially at baptism ministry and toddler groups.

Session 4: Welcome and Inclusion of children
What does it mean to welcome children and those who care for them? What does meaningful inclusion look like? What’s behind the “dreaded shhhh!” and what can be done about it? What cultural barriers hold churches back from being places where children and families feel at home?

Session 5: Young people, their world, and the Gospel
Many children disengage from church at about 11 years old. Is this because church isn’t relevant to young people today? Is it because the Gospel isn’t relevant? In this session we will consider the experiences of this generation of young people and reflect on how we can welcome them into worship.

Session 6: Building sustainable youth ministry
What is youth ministry and what does it look like in your context? In this session we will consider different approaches to age specific discipling and worship activities, and examine how we accompany young people as they explore and grow in faith.

Every session includes some time looking at the question of additional needs and accessibility.


It is a requirement for all LLYCs to complete the online Safeguarding courses – Basic Awareness module (formerly C0) and Foundations module (formerly C1). In order for LLYCs in Training to receive the letter of permission from the Bishop, enabling commissioning, these safeguarding requirements must be met.

We also recommend that parishes consider a basic disclosure for those on the LLYC course/commissioned as LLYC. Information on basic disclosures can be found here: Safeguarding Newsletter Dec 2018.

The parish is responsible for ensuring that LLYCs keep up to date with safeguarding requirements. This means attending a refresher course for the highest required level, every three years.


There is no course fee to take part in this training but your time and willingness to be involved in the mission of God.

Course Dates

Autumn term 2022

Six Monday evenings online from 7.30pm to 9.30pm

  • Monday 10th October
  • Monday 17th October
  • Monday 31st October
  • Monday 7th November
  • Monday 21st November
  • Monday 28th November


If you would like to train as a Lay Leader of Youth and Children, please discuss this with your Incumbent. You will both need to complete separate online booking forms here.

As the autumn term will be the first time the course is run, we may need to limit the number of participants. The deadline for bookings will be Monday 26th September at the very latest, although if we reach capacity we may need to close applications sooner.

Further Information

You can download the following:


The Lay Leader of Youth and Children programme is managed by Margaret Pritchard Houston, Diocesan Children’s Mission Enabler, and Christian Cole, Diocesan Youth Missioner. You can get in touch with them via the Youth and Children’s team administrator – email here.

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