COLUMBAN LAY MISSIONARIES
From its beginning, the Society has been blessed by the generous lay persons who
have worked with its members on mission. It continues to welcome laity as partners
in mission and pledges itself to help them individually and in groups to fulfil their
Since 1977, the Society began to explore avenues for greater cooperation with laity
in cross-cultural mission. This cooperation flowered in a commitment to partnership
with laity in mission through a Columban Lay Missionary Program. The Program evolved
gradually through meetings with lay missionaries and was formally approved by the
Superior General and Council in June 1994.
Since the establishment of the Program lay missionaries have gradually taken on greater
responsibility for leadership among themselves and for the sending and receiving
of lay missionaries across the various Regions and Mission Units. In October 2006
this development was affirmed with a shift from lay missionaries being part of a
Program to calling themselves the ‘Columban Lay Missionaries’ (CLM).