Ministry On The Menu

The first full day of Diocesan Synod in Cologne has been focusing on ministry in the Diocese in Europe.

After a morning meeting where members were updated on the completion of the Diocese in Europe Measure, Safeguarding and progress towards the transition from part-time to full-time Archdeacons ministry became the theme for the rest of the day´s programme.

Caroline Boddington, the Archbishop´s Secretary for Appointments, gave a briefing about the process for recruiting a new Diocesan Bishop following the announcement by Bishop Geoffrey of his retirement. She explained how the process for Europe is slightly different from the other 43 dioceses. It involves many people, from inside and outside the Diocese, under the leadership of the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Because a number of sees are becoming vacant and needing a new Bishop the process may be lengthy before a shortlist is brawn up and formal interviews are held. Caroline also answered questions about the process.

The session was followed by a presentation from the Ministry Team (pictured above) left to right Rev Frances Hiller, Debbie Cunningham, Canon Ulla Monberg, Canon William Gulliford, Rev Elaine Labourel and Bishop David. Their diverse functions were explained. Vocations are encouraged and the team is experienced at helping people to explore their calling and to take it further. We have around 50 potential ordinands exploring their vocations or in various stages of training and development. We at present have 5 clergy from other denominations considering transferring their orders to the Diocese.

Enquiry weekends began in February 2010 and have proved to be a useful asset to identify the next steps for would-be ordinands. These have now become annual fixtures in the calendar. With Post Ordination Training it takes 7 years to train a priest in the Church of England. Synod members expressed their appreciation of the work done by Ministry Team.