One of the levers of change in the diocesan strategy is to ‘develop healthy churches and leaders’ with an expressed aim to refresh leadership so that both clergy and laity feel energised, empowered and liberated to grow in their ministry. The flourishing of the clergy is key to the flourishing of the church.
Clergy wellbeing encompasses all that promotes the health and wholeness of the clergy of the diocese, with a view to encouraging such flourishing. Clergy wellbeing is of concern for the whole church and the responsibility for the promotion of wellbeing lies with:
- the diocese, in offering personal support and development of skills necessary for the changing role of those who are ordained and in defining manageable roles for clergy
- the clergy, as they take responsibility for their own wellbeing and are mindful of the wellbeing of their colleagues
- congregations, as they are encouraged to recognise their impact on the wellbeing of their clergy.
Recent developments in diocesan provision to encourage clergy wellbeing include:
- the development of the Ministerial Development Review process
- the availability of coaching
- training in Resilience in Conflict
- an introduction to Mindfulness
- a series on ‘How to Survive and Thrive as a Minister’
- the provision and training of mentors for new incumbents.
Counselling for clergy
Any clergy seeking counselling for themselves or members of their family are welcome to contact the Revd Bruce Kinsey on 01865 277716 or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Managing Ministry Pressure Better
A survey called Managing Ministry Pressure Better run by St Luke’s HealthCare was conducted in the diocese in June 2014. The clearest finding from the survey was that clergy in Ely Diocese reported that they are most pressured by the demands of ordained ministry as defined by the volume and speed of work, meetings and correspondence. The findings of the survey were considered by a focus group and the resultant report can be found using the link above.
Recommendations to clergy
All clergy are encouraged to set up and regularly review their own portfolio of care. It is recommended that particular care and thought is given to ways in which clergy maintain their own spiritual wellbeing and growth.
The Society of Mary and Martha, Sheldon
The Sheldon Community supports people in ministry at times of stress, crisis, burnout or breakdown as well as offering space for regular retreats; a programme of led retreats; a 12.000 mile service, and other events. To quote their website ‘We’re good space in a crisis and good space for your regular retreats (and nobody needs to know which it is).’
T: 01353 652713