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Ministry Experience Scheme

Diocesan Development Officer for Youth and Families, Mike Kelly, tells us more about the scheme.

Our first Ministry Experience Scheme (MES) in the Diocese of Ely ran in 2021, in response to research by the national church to determine what might help young people explore a vocation within the church. Our MES is a fully funded Anglican gap year, allowing young adults (aged 18-30) an opportunity to explore vocational and lay ministry in all it's aspects, giving participants a well rounded experience of ministry in general, as well as a taste of the various specialisms available.

Throughout the MES year, participants will be in work or training for full time hours, serving a local church for 4 days per week (including Sunday), being involved in all different aspects of mission and ministry, including working with schools, youth, families and children. In addition to this, one day per week participants will receive bespoke training in discipleship, leadership and theological education.

The MES year is funded by the Diocese of Ely and the MES grant, so it doesn’t cost the participants anything. Participants are volunteer workers, living in community with others on the scheme (there are a total of 4 spaces available on the Ely Diocese MES this year), with housing provided, household bills paid and an allowance to cover food.

Based near Yaxley, in the North of the Diocese of Ely, participants will all be working together to serve a local church, serving in different roles within the church, including working with 5 local primary schools and carrying out local pastoral visiting. Each person is also assigned a mentor from outside the scheme to help guide them through the year.

We are hoping to recruit young adults from the Diocese through our local churches, so please do have a think if there's a young person you know who would benefit from this scheme. It's open to young people from the UK, unfortunately we can't accept any applications from outside the UK. If you are outside the UK, there are other Ministry Experience Schemes that are able to do this and we would recommend contacting the National MES Manager using the web form provided on the Church of England website (Click here) explaining your situation, for more assistance.

If you’d like to discuss any aspects of the MES year please get in touch with Mike Kelly, our Youth and Families Development Officer. You can also download the Ministry Experience Scheme Information Pack.


  • Please download and complete an Application form here - Download here
  • Please return your completed Application form by email here
  • Unfortunately we are unable to accept applications from outside the UK this year.

Page last updated: Wednesday 6th March 2024 2:53 PM
First published on: 31st May 2023
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