Do you have a call to self-supporting ministry?

17th September 2018

The Diocese of Sheffield is about to launch an updated version of its 'Not Just a Day Job' course starting on 17 October.

The course is for those in churches who feel they may have something more to offer and that it might be in ordained ministry as a self-supporting minister. They may already hold a formal office: Reader, Pastoral Worker, Lay Evangelist, Worship Leader, Lay Pioneer, Youth and Children’s Workers – or indeed hold no office whatsoever but think God might be calling them to step forward.

The original course was hugely successful and a number of other dioceses took up the principles of our course and are now running them under a variety of descriptions.

Both Bishop Pete and Bishop Peter will be participating with the DDO team and the course will run from October 2018 to January 2019.

Through prayer, bible study, literature, and in conversation with each other and with people who are already ordained, the course will look at ministry in the Diocese of Sheffield.  It will consider in detail the criteria set out by the Church of England nationally - as well as our local requirements - for ordination.  At the end of the course, participants will discern whether or not you might be called to be a priest or distinctive deacon and might be recommended for selection at a national level. Whatever the future holds, we hope that you will gain a clearer sense of God’s call on your life.

Self-supporting ministers may have jobs in another field, or be recently retired, or have the resources to support themselves financially in ministry. They will be mature Christians, with some experience and knowledge of the Church of England, who feel that they may have more to give, but might not be able to take on a full time role.

Self-supporting ordained ministry offers an exciting opportunity to serve as an assistant priest or distinctive deacon, who will always work alongside a team leader. Self-supporting ministers (SSMs) may work:

  • within a parish team or mission partnership

  • across a deanery

  • as pioneers setting up Fresh Expressions of church

  • in another ministry setting such as a hospital or prison.

SSMs come from all walks of life and from different styles of church. All undergo a period of formation and training for ministry, and all work with a more experienced priest in their first post and maybe beyond.

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