Yesterday I spent most of the day at Church House in Threemilestone with the panel and two dedicated and selfless people who had put themselves forward to train as Readers.
They had been asked to prepare two tasks including chairing a group discussion on a passage they found tricky and telling a story to illustrated a Bible reading for an inter-generational service. Between tasks they met the warden’s group whilst balancing coffee and cake as they spoke and in the afternoon they had lengthy conversations / interviews with the selection panel.
Over the years that I have been involved in the discernment for new Readers the process has become much more rigorous and the demands of training every higher. I trained with a colleague in the Redruth Team with a Tutor based in a nearby parish, the Rev David Stephens who set and marked our essays. I remember going to a few lectures in Truro with Canon Peter Boyd and doing a placement of sorts in another setting, the local Methodist circuit. I managed to complete the course and be licensed back in 1988 while working full time as a Primary School deputy head teacher and with a young family. I really doubt whether anyone in their thirties with a full time job and young family could train these days. I certainly could not although the study part was relatively easy following on the back of a Masters dissertation and an NPQH!
These days training with the ordinands is a wonderful opportunity especially when we rely on teams to run our multi-church clusters and benefices.
these days all the trainees have to attend 7 weekend sessions at MARJON in Plymouth and 14 reflective practice groups in Turo. Before that they must complete the Foundations in Christian Ministry Course ad afterwards complete the rigours of the very practical post Licensing year. Only after all that is done will a full three year license be granted.
It would be good to record here any thoughts you have about your own path to Licensed Lay Ministry and any thoughts you have about how training might be done differently for today’s needs.
i have signed up for some training myself with the next Sens Kernewek Course which i am thoroughly looking forward to having heard excellent feedback from other Readers who have attended.
For the last three weeks we have had a friend to stay and as a result the Garden has been transformed and many tasks that I have had on my To-do list for the past several years have been completed. ( I will post some pictures at the bottom later)
Having a visitor, especially a really helpful visitor, is great but it changes all routines and as I get older I value my times of solitary meanderings more and more. Those times of prayer are time to mull over sermon thoughts, to pray for those in particular need and for others more generally and when that time goes there is certainly a sense of something missing.
There is however ‘no rest for the wicked’, as my mother used to say. This week we have readers in Conversation tomorrow morning and safeguarding training in the afternoon supporting the new leadership course. Tuesday morning is our weekly ministry team meeting where thankfully we will be discussing the readings I am preaching about next Sunday! Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons are story telling in a local primary school and Thursday I am off to see my Spiritual director. Everyone should have a spiritual Director!