Last week, the four bishops in the Diocese of Oxford circulated an Ad Clerum (‘to the clergy’) to all licensed ministers in the diocese; the text can be found on Steven Croft’s diocesan blog. There is no doubt that the letter includes comments with which everyone in the Church could and should agree. As Will Pearson-Gee, … Continue Reading
Responses to the report Ministry and Mission in Covenant, proposing closer union between the Church of England and the Methodist Church (and discussed in my previous post), have reignited the responses that were made to the earlier scheme in 1969, which was agreed by the Methodists but rejected by the Church of England’s Church Assembly (the … Continue Reading
This week, the Church of England’s General Synod will debate something controversial other than sexuality (hurrah!): whether we should take a formal step towards closer union with the Methodist Church by means of mutual recognition of our respective presbyteral (local church leader) ministries. The proposals are set out in the report Ministry and Mission in … Continue Reading
By some measures, theological education and ordination training in the Church of England is in a state of rude health. The Renewal and Reform programme set a target of increasing the numbers coming forward and training for ordination by 50% over the next five years, in order to address the large numbers of clergy retiring, … Continue Reading
One of the many fascinating debates at Synod this week was on the proposals for Resourcing Ministerial Education (RME) on which I have written a couple of times before. I had put down one of four amendments to the motion from Steven Croft, Bishop of Sheffield, and I was asking for work to be done to check that RME was not undermining ‘our shared, catholic understanding of ordination as expressed in the Ordinal’ prior to implementation in September 2017.
One of the important issues coming up in this session of Synod is the reconfiguration of ministerial training as part of the Renewal and Reform programme, under the title ‘Resourcing Ministerial Education.’ I commented on it last year, and had an exchange with Steven Croft, Bishop of Sheffield, who is leading on this. In view … Continue Reading
As part of the ‘Reform and Renewal’ process, one of the four main papers looked at the future needs and funding for ministerial training. Written by a group chaired by Steven Croft, Bishop of Sheffield, I think it was one of the better papers. There were some excellent and need changes, some of which are already … Continue Reading
The Church of England does not have a good track record of thinking strategically about theological and ministerial education. In 1977 the imaginatively named ACCM Paper 22 swept away the General Ordination Exam, and instead asked each training institution to articulate its understanding of ministry and its approach to training. In the post-1960s liberal haze, … Continue Reading