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Anglican Futures: Anglican Alphabet Spaghetti

Anglican Futures Anglican Alphabetti Spaghetti A dummies guide to the plethora of organisations and acronyms linked to faithful Anglicans in the UK and Europe. I once spent some time around military personel.  Everything had its own TLA (Three Letter Acronym) right...

Canterbury Tales: Favourite Bible Stories Retold by Archbishop Justin Welby

Canterbury Tales Favourite Bible stories retold by Archbishop Justin Welby The Good Samaritan A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead, halfway...

Anglican Mission in England Elects Two Suffragan Bishops

Anglican Mission in England Elects Two Suffragan Bishops The Anglican Mission in England (AMiE) met in Synod on 18 June.  While there, they elected two suffragan bishops to aid Bishop Andy Lines in providing episcopal oversight for the overall work.  Bishop Lines also...

Pride Flags Causing Conflict at Christian School

Pride Flags Cause Conflict at Christian School Conflict has broken out in a Christian school in Oxfordshire over the display of “Pride” flags. The institution in question is Kingham Hill School.  The same Trust (Kingham Hill Trust) oversees Oak Hill College, an...

Prayer Book Society Raising Funds to Put BCPs in the Hands of Choristers

Prayer Book Society Raising Funds to Put BCPs in the Hands of Choristers The Prayer Book Society, which will soon celebrate its 50th Anniversary, is raising funds to put a special edition BCP into the hands of junior choristers around the nation.   The idea came to...

Book Review: Reimagining Britain by Justin Welby

Reimagining Britain Foundations for Hope Justin Welby Bloomsbury, 2018, new edn. 2021 (ISBN: 978-1-4729-8497-5, 322pp, £12.99) The Archbishop of Canterbury has made several notable political interventions recently, including over ‘partygate’ and the Rwanda deportation...

Birthday of Anglicanism in America

Birthday of Anglicanism in America By the Revd Canon Chuck Collins June 16, 1607 was the birthday of Anglicanism in America. On this day Captain John Smith and 104 others celebrated the Lord’s Supper when they arrived safely in Jamestown, Virginia. Jamestown was the...

Barnabas Fund Report: Two ChiBok Girls Found

Barnabas Fund Reports Two Chibok Girls Found After 8 Years 24 June 2022 Two women, who were among hundreds of schoolgirls abducted by Boko Haram from the Nigerian town of Chibok eight years ago, have been found. Hauwa Joseph was discovered among a group of other...

New Bishop-elect for the Diocese of Cashel, Ferns & Ossory

Church of Ireland News New Bishop Elected for Cashel, Ferns & Ossory The Church of Ireland diocese of Cashel, Ferns, and Ossory now has a bishop-elect.  The Venerable Adrian Wilkinson, Archdeacon of Cork, Cloyne, and Ross was elected to succeed the Rt Revd Michael...

Editorial: Lessons to be Learned from the American Pro-Life Movement

Editorial Lessons to be Learned from American Pro-Life Movement Friday, 24 June 2022, the Feast of St John the Baptist, will be a date which will live in infamy amongst the supporters of abortion.  On that date, the US Supreme Court, overturned the precedent set by...

Bishop of Maidstone Urged to Improve Training & Networks for Women in Ministry

A new survey on women’s ministry in complementarian evangelical churches, initiated by the Bishop of Maidstone, has found that better approaches to professional development and the creation of more ‘peer support’ networks are needed if this ministry is to flourish.

The survey was undertaken by the Rev Dr Kirsten Birkett, herself a complementarian priest. The Bishop of Maidstone, the Rt Rev’d Rod Thomas, praised her  ‘excellent, careful and thorough work.’ He said that its findings give complementarian evangelicals much encouragement – but at the same time were a real challenge to any sense of complacency. 

150 women in ministry (predominantly lay ministers) were contacted and the response rate was 55%. The survey found that:

  • 89% of respondents were either ‘very’ or ‘somewhat’ satisfied in their ministries
  • 93% of respondents felt ‘very’ or ‘somewhat’ satisfied in their roles
  • 77% of respondents felt the complementarian stance of their churches helped their ministries

However, the Rev Dr Kirsten Birkett also encountered a number of comments about the sense of isolation women ministers can feel; the fact that sometimes they suffer unequal treatment compared to male ministers; and that they can feel under-valued.  This led her to conclude that treating women equally when they work differently ‘takes some thought; but it is an area in which Christians should be doing better than their secular colleagues, not worse.’ A key area of concern was access to continued ministerial training. 35% of respondents said they had not been encouraged to undertake further training. 51% said they would pursue such training if funding (and work time) were available and there was a job to which they could return.

Dr Birkett’s report concluded with six recommendations for action by the Bishop of Maidstone covering the provision of advice relating to training, pastoral encouragement, the development of supportive peer networks, pay, complementarian expectations and employment guidelines. These will now be considered by the Bishop’s Working Group, but in the meantime Bishop Rod has commended the survey to incumbents, expressing the hope that it will serve as a fresh prompt for encouraging women in ministry.

The full survey is available on the Bishop’s web site at: www.bishopofmaidstone.org

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