Comments: Resourcing Ministerial Education: another chapter

The classic response of ecclesiastical leadership that has lost the trust of its followers.

"Your failure to support our proposals is evidence that you lack trust in God."

Balderdash.

Posted by Jeremy at Wednesday, 13 May 2015 at 9:08pm BST

"I find your lack of faith... disturbing."

Posted by ExRevd at Thursday, 14 May 2015 at 6:55am BST

"Maybe a little more faith in God who will meet us on the way and guide us is called for?"

- Julian Hubbard -

This would seem to be the basic need for any changes to be made to training for the Ministry of the Church. Quick fixes can be disastrous; as can resistance to change. Perhaps a Day of Prayer - devoted to this most important resourcing for the equipping of the Church for mission. After all, we are now in the season leading up to Pentecost!

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Thursday, 14 May 2015 at 9:03am BST

This is a classic example of institutional desperation. But worse, it displays an appalling degree of spiritual arrogance (i.e. we're right and you're wrong). Is this supposed to be the fruit of Justin Welby's loudly proclaimed skills as a conciliator and reconciler?

The truth is that RME and its associated programme of Reform and Renewal is not capturing the imagination of the Church as a whole. The Archbishops are not bringing the Church with them (to say nothing of General Synod). Instead of listening to people who actually have some wisdom and experience to offer (not to say some learning), they are resorting to unleashing their mandarins to snap at the heels of those who have a critical and intelligent contribution to make to the process. This is hardly Anglican and more resonant of UKIP's internal leadership.

Posted by James A at Friday, 15 May 2015 at 8:01am BST

Significantly, Julian Hubbard's (disappointingly predictable) response makes no mention at all of the concerns raised by the 17 signatories to the Church Times Letter, led by Dr Jeremy Morris. Similarly, Steve Croft chose to ignore their letter, too, in his earlier response. It is gratifying that Madeleine Davies's piece in today's Church Times has a response from Dr Morris to the admission that research resources are inadequate in the Ministry Division.

Until this ill-conceived programme is properly critiqued, is the subject of more rigorous research, and is opened up to the involvement of those who have, hitherto, been excluded from it, it will prove to be a monstrous waste of the Church's time, energy and money.

Posted by Simon R at Friday, 15 May 2015 at 3:15pm BST

Julian Hubbard writes cardboard English. At the end he whines. Respect has to be earned.

Posted by John at Friday, 15 May 2015 at 9:11pm BST

Let's not forget that it is a major step forward for the Church of England to work with researchers in this way to inform its strategic direction. There are lots of researchers in the church - many of them have been funded at some stage in their journey by Ministry Division - building a better and more intentional relationship with the wider research community in the church - including the many researchers in practical theology - would, in my view, be a good use of money. Inviting researchers to apply for funding for research in particular areas would cost relatively little in terms of the amounts at stake. Funding research in this way that takes a wider view of the questions or which has a critical edge would help to build confidence in the integrity of the process, and make sure that the direction is not unduly influenced by the first questions asked by a small central group, or their expected answers.

Also doing some serious survey work of the questions which have commended themselves to the research community would be of intrinsic interest. Building a living relationship - a critical dialogue - with researchers would bring huge benefits to the church, which is institutionally unaware of the resources which already exist.

Posted by Mark Bennet at Wednesday, 20 May 2015 at 7:12am BST
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