What is FCM Commissioning?
Commissioning is recognition of the call from a community of believers for a member to function as a minister in those ministries with a civil requirement such as witnessing marriages and providing pastoral care as chaplains.
How does one get commissioned?
The applicant will provide the following to the regional vice president (see Directors on FCM homepage):
1. The completed, signed Commissioning Application itself, a part of the New Member Packet available from FCM, Central Office Membership, 1709 West 69th. Street #3, Cleveland, Ohio 44102-2957.
2. Three letters of recommendation, at least one of which is from an active FCM member. If the applicant does not know an active member, it is incumbent upon the regional vice president(s) to facilitate this with someone from the applicants geographical area. The regional vice president will verify the authenticity of the letters.
3. The name of someone to serve as your ministry colleague: a person with whom you can exchange ministry concerns and mutually assist in professional/spiritual growth.
4. A one-page statement of your ministerial self understanding. This includes a description of your ministry, your reason(s) for seeking commissioning, a brief summary of your experience educational preparedness for ministry and how you will maintain your community relationship with FCM.
5. Brief Resume.
6. A check of $100 payable to Federation of Christian Ministries.
Who may apply for commissioning?
Commissioning is open to all members of FCM, female, male, ordained and non-ordained. However, the presentation of the materials does not in itself assure that the member will be commissioned.
The decision both for initial and continuing commissioning rests with the Circle of Directors.
How long does it take?
Once the applicants requirements for commissioning have been met, the applicants name will be submitted for approval at the next meeting of the Circle of Directors (semi-annually). There is no minimum waiting period either to begin the process or to be commissioned beyond awaiting the next meeting of the Circle of Directors.
How long does it last?
Upon approval of commissioning, a certificate of ministry will be issued to the member. Commissioning for all members is valid for one year. It is renewable at the time the annual membership dues are paid and the annual report is submitted. The annual renewal is from January 1 - December 31. A service fee beyond the membership dues will be established by the Circle of Directors and must accompany the dues and annual report.
What else do I need to know?
A commissioned member who witnesses a marriage acts as an agent of the state as well as a minister of the gospel and is responsible to conform to all the legal requirements for witnessing a marriage.
Commissioned members are responsible for their own liability insurance and their own professional license(s).
Commissioning is not an indication of license for such things as psychological counseling.