The Pastor as Juggler:  the challenge of multiple rural parishes Leslie J Francis
Structure <ul><li>empirical theology </li></ul><ul><li>empirical research </li></ul><ul><li>psychological health </li></ul...
Empirical theology
What is theology? <ul><li>the study of God </li></ul><ul><li>reflection on the experience of God </li></ul><ul><li>the sys...
Who does theology? <ul><li>academics in ivory towers </li></ul><ul><li>clergy in pulpits </li></ul><ul><li>the people of G...
What are the tools of theology? <ul><li>scripture </li></ul><ul><li>doctrine </li></ul><ul><li>reason </li></ul>
What is empirical theology? <ul><li>The sower </li></ul>
Where is empirical theology rooted? <ul><li>doctrine of creation </li></ul><ul><li>look at the natural world (plant biolog...
Where is empirical theology tested? <ul><li>doctrine of fall </li></ul><ul><li>doctrine of salvation </li></ul><ul><li>doc...
What does the doctrine of creation claim? <ul><li>Genesis 1:27 </li></ul><ul><li>So God created humankind in God’s image. ...
Empirical Research and Rural Church
1985 <ul><li>Rural Anglicanism </li></ul>
A brave diocese <ul><li>historical analysis </li></ul><ul><li>questionnaire survey </li></ul><ul><li>participant observati...
History 1956 - 1982 <ul><li>electoral roll 16.3% to 7.3% </li></ul><ul><li>baptisms 63.2% to 36.6% </li></ul><ul><li>clerg...
Questionnaires <ul><li>92% response rate </li></ul><ul><li>benefices up to 7 churches </li></ul><ul><li>the absent priest ...
Participant observation <ul><li>8.30 1662 in 17 minutes </li></ul><ul><li>3.30 Solemn Evensong and Devotions for one </li>...
Did the church want to know? <ul><li>Diocesan Bishop told me not to publish it </li></ul><ul><li>Anonymise the diocese </l...
Robert Runcie <ul><li>“ Dr Francis has written a timely and devastating book ... scrupulously research and clearly present...
1996 <ul><li>Church Watch </li></ul>
Assessing Psychological Health
The research problem <ul><li>a matter of definition </li></ul><ul><li>a matter of measurement </li></ul><ul><li>exploring ...
Individual differences <ul><li>personal </li></ul><ul><li>psychological </li></ul><ul><li>theological </li></ul><ul><li>co...
Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) <ul><li>a sequential model </li></ul><ul><li>emotional exhaustion </li></ul><ul><li>depers...
Modified MBI <ul><li>Anglicans (Rutledge) </li></ul><ul><li>Anglicans (Musson) </li></ul><ul><li>Anglicans (Randall) </li>...
Francis Burnout Inventory (FBI) <ul><li>balanced affect model </li></ul><ul><li>negative affect (SEEM) </li></ul><ul><li>p...
SEEM <ul><li>I feel drained by fulfilling my ministry roles </li></ul><ul><li>Fatigue and irritation are part of my daily ...
SIMS <ul><li>I have accomplished many worthwhile things in my current ministry  </li></ul><ul><li>I gain a lot of personal...
FBI <ul><li>Australia (NCLS) </li></ul><ul><li>USA (Presbyterian Church) </li></ul><ul><li>Anglicans </li></ul><ul><li>Met...
Psychological factors <ul><li>Eysenck’s model </li></ul><ul><li>Extraversion (yes) </li></ul><ul><li>Neuroticism  (yes) </...
Theological factors <ul><li>Randall’s model </li></ul><ul><li>catholic – evangelical (no) </li></ul><ul><li>liberal – cons...
Contextual factors (Turton) <ul><li>Emotional exhaustion </li></ul><ul><li>length of time in present church (no) </li></ul...
Support structures <ul><li>companion animal (no) </li></ul><ul><li>prayer (yes) </li></ul><ul><li>Supervision (yes) </li><...
Environment <ul><li>Francis, L. J., & Rutledge, C. J. F. (2000). Are rural clergy in the Church of England under greater s...
Francis and Rutledge (2000) <ul><li>no difference in emotional exhaustion </li></ul><ul><li>no difference in depersonalisa...
Sources of stress
Sanford (1982) <ul><li>job is never finished </li></ul><ul><li>results are never clear </li></ul><ul><li>ministry can be r...
Coate (1989) <ul><li>strain of caring </li></ul><ul><li>strain of relating to God </li></ul><ul><li>strain of proclaiming ...
Kirk and Leary (1994) <ul><li>marginality in secular culture </li></ul><ul><li>alienation from conflicting loyalties (pari...
Davey (1995) <ul><li>role conflict, ambiguity and overload </li></ul><ul><li>career development </li></ul><ul><li>support ...
van der Ven (1998) <ul><li>superficiality of contacts </li></ul><ul><li>dependency of core members </li></ul><ul><li>tryin...
Warren (2002) <ul><li>depression </li></ul><ul><li>broken marriages </li></ul><ul><li>feelings of insecurity </li></ul><ul...
Burton and Burton (2009) <ul><li>transition points in ministry </li></ul><ul><li>doughnut principle (no boundaries) </li><...
Fletcher (1990) <ul><li>quantitative overload </li></ul><ul><li>time-related over-extension </li></ul>
Time-related over-extension
Christine Brewster <ul><li>detailed questionnaires </li></ul><ul><li>clergy responsible for 3+ rural churches </li></ul><u...
Research aims (3) <ul><li>develop a measure </li></ul><ul><li>assess overall level </li></ul><ul><li>explore variations </...
Step 1 <ul><li>In depth interviews with clergy to capture what they are saying </li></ul>
Step 2 <ul><li>Questionnaire survey among clergy to quantify the reported experience </li></ul>
Sample (N = 613) <ul><li>151 women, 462 men </li></ul><ul><li>157 under 50 </li></ul><ul><li>259 in 50s </li></ul><ul><li>...
Churches <ul><li>219 held 3 </li></ul><ul><li>164 held 4 </li></ul><ul><li>97 held 5 </li></ul><ul><li>126 held 6 or more ...
Introducing BISTROX <ul><li>Brewster Index of Stress from </li></ul><ul><li>Time-Related Over-Extension </li></ul><ul><li>...
Causing stress for 59% <ul><li>being unable to respond to the needs of everyone </li></ul>
Causing stress for 56% <ul><li>doing separate paper work for several churches </li></ul>
Causing stress for 52% <ul><li>nurturing and retaining volunteers in several churches </li></ul>
Causing stress for 51% <ul><li>being expected to be involved in several communities </li></ul>
Causing stress for 51% <ul><li>giving attention to detailed matters in several churches </li></ul>
Causing stress for 46% <ul><li>allocating time between different communities  </li></ul>
Causing stress for 46% <ul><li>supporting fund-raising for several churches (46%);  </li></ul>
Causing stress for 45% <ul><li>being expected to give pastoral care in several communities </li></ul>
Causing stress for 45% <ul><li>lacking time for personal reflection </li></ul>
Causing stress for 45% <ul><li>people thinking that they should do it all </li></ul>
Causing stress for 37% <ul><li>allocating their personal and professional expertise to several churches </li></ul>
Causing stress for 37% <ul><li>not having enough time to work with young adults </li></ul>
Causing stress for 36% <ul><li>lacking opportunities for mental stimulation </li></ul>
Causing stress for 36% <ul><li>not having enough time to work with teenagers </li></ul>
Causing stress for 32% <ul><li>not having enough time to work with children </li></ul>
Causing stress for 31% <ul><li>getting to know people in several churches </li></ul>
Personal factors <ul><li>sex  .08* </li></ul><ul><li>age -.17*** </li></ul>
Psychological factors <ul><li>extraversion  -.14*** </li></ul><ul><li>neuroticism  .38*** </li></ul><ul><li>psychoticism  ...
Theological factors <ul><li>Evangelical  -.01 </li></ul><ul><li>Conservative .00 </li></ul><ul><li>Charismatic  .00 </li><...
Contextual factors <ul><li>N churches .00 </li></ul>
Reflecting theologically
Aim 1 <ul><li>develop a measure </li></ul><ul><li>a set of experiences linking together </li></ul>
Aim 2 <ul><li>assess overall level </li></ul><ul><li>too high for comfort </li></ul>
Aim 3 <ul><li>explore variation </li></ul><ul><li>sex and age matter </li></ul><ul><li>personality matters </li></ul><ul><...
Strategy 1 <ul><li>Selection </li></ul><ul><li>Some will survive better </li></ul>
Strategy 2 <ul><li>Professional support </li></ul><ul><li>support the vulnerable </li></ul><ul><li>enhance sense of accomp...
Strategy 3 <ul><li>Structural changes </li></ul><ul><li>create ministry teams </li></ul><ul><li>go for the circuit model <...
Strategy 4 <ul><li>Identify the theological problem </li></ul><ul><li>the clue is 3 churches are already too many </li></ul>
Anglican parochial ministry <ul><li>theologically rooted </li></ul><ul><li>pastoral (to all) </li></ul><ul><li>incarnation...
Learning from experience <ul><li>The responses to the survey leave no doubt that this notion of time-related over-extensio...
Learning from experience <ul><li>They are torn by trying to share themselves between different communities. At the heart o...
Learning from experience <ul><li>Here are people who feel that more demands are being placed on them than they are able to...
Learning from experience <ul><li>In the multi-parish benefice this can no longer be the case. In the new situation the pri...
Learning from experience <ul><li>The experience of stress resulting from time-related over-extension is indicative of a de...
Learning from experience <ul><li>The number of churches in the benefice is largely irrelevant. The benefice of three churc...
Learning from experience <ul><li>In one sense, this might sound like good news to the church strategists who are planning ...
Practical conclusions
Theological affirmation <ul><li>Reaffirm a theology that is </li></ul><ul><li>episcopal and diocesan </li></ul><ul><li>par...
Pastoral provision <ul><li>retain and re-establish parsonages </li></ul><ul><li>recruit and train deployable NSM ministry ...
Rediscover discipleship <ul><li>the Bangor Exploring Faith Programme </li></ul><ul><li>BA in Theology for Discipleship and...
Curriculum: year 1 <ul><li>beginning the NT </li></ul><ul><li>encountering God’s World </li></ul><ul><li>call and vocation...
Curriculum: year 2 <ul><li>beginning the OT </li></ul><ul><li>mission and service </li></ul><ul><li>the church and other f...
Curriculum: year 3 <ul><li>Jesus and the Gospels </li></ul><ul><li>God as Trinity </li></ul><ul><li>pastoral </li></ul>
Curriculum: year 4 <ul><li>Paul for today </li></ul><ul><li>Worship </li></ul><ul><li>Christian ethics </li></ul>
Assessment <ul><li>reflections from local groups (1500 words) </li></ul><ul><li>essay testing academic outcomes (1500 word...
The Pastor as Juggler:  the challenge of multiple rural parishes Leslie J Francis
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Leslie J. Francis: The Pastor as Juggler

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Leslie J. Francis: The Pastor as Juggler

  1. 1. The Pastor as Juggler: the challenge of multiple rural parishes Leslie J Francis
  2. 2. Structure <ul><li>empirical theology </li></ul><ul><li>empirical research </li></ul><ul><li>psychological health </li></ul><ul><li>sources of stress </li></ul><ul><li>time-related over-extension </li></ul><ul><li>reflecting theologically </li></ul><ul><li>practical conclusion </li></ul>
  3. 3. Empirical theology
  4. 4. What is theology? <ul><li>the study of God </li></ul><ul><li>reflection on the experience of God </li></ul><ul><li>the systematic reflection of the people of God </li></ul>
  5. 5. Who does theology? <ul><li>academics in ivory towers </li></ul><ul><li>clergy in pulpits </li></ul><ul><li>the people of God as a community </li></ul><ul><li>Astley’s Ordinary Theology </li></ul>
  6. 6. What are the tools of theology? <ul><li>scripture </li></ul><ul><li>doctrine </li></ul><ul><li>reason </li></ul>
  7. 7. What is empirical theology? <ul><li>The sower </li></ul>
  8. 8. Where is empirical theology rooted? <ul><li>doctrine of creation </li></ul><ul><li>look at the natural world (plant biology) </li></ul><ul><li>look at social patterns (sociology) </li></ul><ul><li>look at people (psychology) </li></ul>
  9. 9. Where is empirical theology tested? <ul><li>doctrine of fall </li></ul><ul><li>doctrine of salvation </li></ul><ul><li>doctrine of sanctification </li></ul>
  10. 10. What does the doctrine of creation claim? <ul><li>Genesis 1:27 </li></ul><ul><li>So God created humankind in God’s image. </li></ul><ul><li>In the image of God, God created them. </li></ul><ul><li>Male and female God created them. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Empirical Research and Rural Church
  12. 12. 1985 <ul><li>Rural Anglicanism </li></ul>
  13. 13. A brave diocese <ul><li>historical analysis </li></ul><ul><li>questionnaire survey </li></ul><ul><li>participant observation </li></ul>
  14. 14. History 1956 - 1982 <ul><li>electoral roll 16.3% to 7.3% </li></ul><ul><li>baptisms 63.2% to 36.6% </li></ul><ul><li>clergy 286 to 207 </li></ul>
  15. 15. Questionnaires <ul><li>92% response rate </li></ul><ul><li>benefices up to 7 churches </li></ul><ul><li>the absent priest </li></ul><ul><li>the unused church </li></ul><ul><li>the small congregation </li></ul>
  16. 16. Participant observation <ul><li>8.30 1662 in 17 minutes </li></ul><ul><li>3.30 Solemn Evensong and Devotions for one </li></ul>
  17. 17. Did the church want to know? <ul><li>Diocesan Bishop told me not to publish it </li></ul><ul><li>Anonymise the diocese </li></ul>
  18. 18. Robert Runcie <ul><li>“ Dr Francis has written a timely and devastating book ... scrupulously research and clearly presented ... It deserves the widest possible readership and discussion.” </li></ul>
  19. 19. 1996 <ul><li>Church Watch </li></ul>
  20. 20. Assessing Psychological Health
  21. 21. The research problem <ul><li>a matter of definition </li></ul><ul><li>a matter of measurement </li></ul><ul><li>exploring individual differences </li></ul>
  22. 22. Individual differences <ul><li>personal </li></ul><ul><li>psychological </li></ul><ul><li>theological </li></ul><ul><li>contextual </li></ul>
  23. 23. Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI) <ul><li>a sequential model </li></ul><ul><li>emotional exhaustion </li></ul><ul><li>depersonalisation </li></ul><ul><li>lack of personal accomplishment </li></ul>
  24. 24. Modified MBI <ul><li>Anglicans (Rutledge) </li></ul><ul><li>Anglicans (Musson) </li></ul><ul><li>Anglicans (Randall) </li></ul><ul><li>Anglicans (Turton) </li></ul><ul><li>Catholics (Louden) </li></ul><ul><li>Pentecostals (Kay) </li></ul>
  25. 25. Francis Burnout Inventory (FBI) <ul><li>balanced affect model </li></ul><ul><li>negative affect (SEEM) </li></ul><ul><li>positive affect (SIMS) </li></ul>
  26. 26. SEEM <ul><li>I feel drained by fulfilling my ministry roles </li></ul><ul><li>Fatigue and irritation are part of my daily experience </li></ul><ul><li>I am invaded by sadness I can’t explain </li></ul><ul><li>I am feeling negative or cynical about the people with whom I work </li></ul><ul><li>I always have enthusiasm for my work </li></ul><ul><li>My humour has a cynical and biting tone </li></ul><ul><li>I find myself spending less and less time with those among whom I minister </li></ul><ul><li>I have been discouraged by the lack of personal support for me here </li></ul><ul><li>I find myself frustrated in my attempts to accomplish tasks important to me </li></ul><ul><li>I am less patient with those among whom I minister than I used to be </li></ul><ul><li>I am becoming less flexible in my dealings with those among whom I minister </li></ul>
  27. 27. SIMS <ul><li>I have accomplished many worthwhile things in my current ministry </li></ul><ul><li>I gain a lot of personal satisfaction from working with people in my current ministry </li></ul><ul><li>I deal very effectively with the problems of the people in my current ministry </li></ul><ul><li>I can easily understand how the people here feel about things </li></ul><ul><li>I feel very positive about my ministry here </li></ul><ul><li>I feel that my pastoral ministry has a positive influence on people’s lives </li></ul><ul><li>I feel that my teaching ministry has a positive influence on people’s faith </li></ul><ul><li>I feel that my ministry is really appreciated by people </li></ul><ul><li>I am really glad that I entered the ministry </li></ul><ul><li>The ministry here gives real purpose and meaning to my life </li></ul><ul><li>I gain a lot of personal satisfaction from fulfilling my functions here </li></ul>
  28. 28. FBI <ul><li>Australia (NCLS) </li></ul><ul><li>USA (Presbyterian Church) </li></ul><ul><li>Anglicans </li></ul><ul><li>Methodists </li></ul><ul><li>Newfrontiers </li></ul>
  29. 29. Psychological factors <ul><li>Eysenck’s model </li></ul><ul><li>Extraversion (yes) </li></ul><ul><li>Neuroticism (yes) </li></ul><ul><li>Psychoticism (no) </li></ul>
  30. 30. Theological factors <ul><li>Randall’s model </li></ul><ul><li>catholic – evangelical (no) </li></ul><ul><li>liberal – conservative (no) </li></ul><ul><li>charismatic - non charismatic (no) </li></ul>
  31. 31. Contextual factors (Turton) <ul><li>Emotional exhaustion </li></ul><ul><li>length of time in present church (no) </li></ul><ul><li>number of churches (no) </li></ul><ul><li>a curate (no) </li></ul><ul><li>a ministry team (no) </li></ul>
  32. 32. Support structures <ul><li>companion animal (no) </li></ul><ul><li>prayer (yes) </li></ul><ul><li>Supervision (yes) </li></ul>
  33. 33. Environment <ul><li>Francis, L. J., & Rutledge, C. J. F. (2000). Are rural clergy in the Church of England under greater stress? A study in empirical theology. Research in the Social Scientific Study of Religion , 11 , 173-191. </li></ul>
  34. 34. Francis and Rutledge (2000) <ul><li>no difference in emotional exhaustion </li></ul><ul><li>no difference in depersonalisation </li></ul><ul><li>lower levels of personal accomplishment </li></ul>
  35. 35. Sources of stress
  36. 36. Sanford (1982) <ul><li>job is never finished </li></ul><ul><li>results are never clear </li></ul><ul><li>ministry can be repetitive </li></ul><ul><li>dealing with expectations </li></ul><ul><li>always working with same people </li></ul><ul><li>working with people in need </li></ul><ul><li>people who come are not seeking what ministers want to offer </li></ul><ul><li>working through a persona </li></ul>
  37. 37. Coate (1989) <ul><li>strain of caring </li></ul><ul><li>strain of relating to God </li></ul><ul><li>strain of proclaiming </li></ul><ul><li>strain of being </li></ul><ul><li>reluctance to admit to strain </li></ul>
  38. 38. Kirk and Leary (1994) <ul><li>marginality in secular culture </li></ul><ul><li>alienation from conflicting loyalties (parish, family, self) </li></ul><ul><li>social isolation </li></ul><ul><li>finance </li></ul>
  39. 39. Davey (1995) <ul><li>role conflict, ambiguity and overload </li></ul><ul><li>career development </li></ul><ul><li>support and recognition </li></ul><ul><li>parsonage </li></ul>
  40. 40. van der Ven (1998) <ul><li>superficiality of contacts </li></ul><ul><li>dependency of core members </li></ul><ul><li>trying to satisfy people </li></ul><ul><li>coping with criticism </li></ul><ul><li>time pressure </li></ul><ul><li>financial pressure </li></ul><ul><li>porous boundaries </li></ul>
  41. 41. Warren (2002) <ul><li>depression </li></ul><ul><li>broken marriages </li></ul><ul><li>feelings of insecurity </li></ul><ul><li>placing unrealistic expectations on bishops </li></ul><ul><li>negative public focus on clergy’s activities </li></ul>
  42. 42. Burton and Burton (2009) <ul><li>transition points in ministry </li></ul><ul><li>doughnut principle (no boundaries) </li></ul>
  43. 43. Fletcher (1990) <ul><li>quantitative overload </li></ul><ul><li>time-related over-extension </li></ul>
  44. 44. Time-related over-extension
  45. 45. Christine Brewster <ul><li>detailed questionnaires </li></ul><ul><li>clergy responsible for 3+ rural churches </li></ul><ul><li>47% response </li></ul><ul><li>722 completed </li></ul>
  46. 46. Research aims (3) <ul><li>develop a measure </li></ul><ul><li>assess overall level </li></ul><ul><li>explore variations </li></ul><ul><li>personal factors </li></ul><ul><li>psychological factors </li></ul><ul><li>environmental factors (N churches) </li></ul>
  47. 47. Step 1 <ul><li>In depth interviews with clergy to capture what they are saying </li></ul>
  48. 48. Step 2 <ul><li>Questionnaire survey among clergy to quantify the reported experience </li></ul>
  49. 49. Sample (N = 613) <ul><li>151 women, 462 men </li></ul><ul><li>157 under 50 </li></ul><ul><li>259 in 50s </li></ul><ul><li>192 in 60s </li></ul><ul><li>5 in 70s </li></ul>
  50. 50. Churches <ul><li>219 held 3 </li></ul><ul><li>164 held 4 </li></ul><ul><li>97 held 5 </li></ul><ul><li>126 held 6 or more </li></ul><ul><li>9 did not answer </li></ul>
  51. 51. Introducing BISTROX <ul><li>Brewster Index of Stress from </li></ul><ul><li>Time-Related Over-Extension </li></ul><ul><li>16 items </li></ul><ul><li>.90 alpha coefficient </li></ul>
  52. 52. Causing stress for 59% <ul><li>being unable to respond to the needs of everyone </li></ul>
  53. 53. Causing stress for 56% <ul><li>doing separate paper work for several churches </li></ul>
  54. 54. Causing stress for 52% <ul><li>nurturing and retaining volunteers in several churches </li></ul>
  55. 55. Causing stress for 51% <ul><li>being expected to be involved in several communities </li></ul>
  56. 56. Causing stress for 51% <ul><li>giving attention to detailed matters in several churches </li></ul>
  57. 57. Causing stress for 46% <ul><li>allocating time between different communities </li></ul>
  58. 58. Causing stress for 46% <ul><li>supporting fund-raising for several churches (46%); </li></ul>
  59. 59. Causing stress for 45% <ul><li>being expected to give pastoral care in several communities </li></ul>
  60. 60. Causing stress for 45% <ul><li>lacking time for personal reflection </li></ul>
  61. 61. Causing stress for 45% <ul><li>people thinking that they should do it all </li></ul>
  62. 62. Causing stress for 37% <ul><li>allocating their personal and professional expertise to several churches </li></ul>
  63. 63. Causing stress for 37% <ul><li>not having enough time to work with young adults </li></ul>
  64. 64. Causing stress for 36% <ul><li>lacking opportunities for mental stimulation </li></ul>
  65. 65. Causing stress for 36% <ul><li>not having enough time to work with teenagers </li></ul>
  66. 66. Causing stress for 32% <ul><li>not having enough time to work with children </li></ul>
  67. 67. Causing stress for 31% <ul><li>getting to know people in several churches </li></ul>
  68. 68. Personal factors <ul><li>sex .08* </li></ul><ul><li>age -.17*** </li></ul>
  69. 69. Psychological factors <ul><li>extraversion -.14*** </li></ul><ul><li>neuroticism .38*** </li></ul><ul><li>psychoticism -.04 </li></ul>
  70. 70. Theological factors <ul><li>Evangelical -.01 </li></ul><ul><li>Conservative .00 </li></ul><ul><li>Charismatic .00 </li></ul>
  71. 71. Contextual factors <ul><li>N churches .00 </li></ul>
  72. 72. Reflecting theologically
  73. 73. Aim 1 <ul><li>develop a measure </li></ul><ul><li>a set of experiences linking together </li></ul>
  74. 74. Aim 2 <ul><li>assess overall level </li></ul><ul><li>too high for comfort </li></ul>
  75. 75. Aim 3 <ul><li>explore variation </li></ul><ul><li>sex and age matter </li></ul><ul><li>personality matters </li></ul><ul><li>N churches do not matter </li></ul>
  76. 76. Strategy 1 <ul><li>Selection </li></ul><ul><li>Some will survive better </li></ul>
  77. 77. Strategy 2 <ul><li>Professional support </li></ul><ul><li>support the vulnerable </li></ul><ul><li>enhance sense of accomplishment </li></ul><ul><li>commend supervision </li></ul><ul><li>keep the prayer life going </li></ul><ul><li>forget the companion animals </li></ul>
  78. 78. Strategy 3 <ul><li>Structural changes </li></ul><ul><li>create ministry teams </li></ul><ul><li>go for the circuit model </li></ul><ul><li>pretend all is well </li></ul>
  79. 79. Strategy 4 <ul><li>Identify the theological problem </li></ul><ul><li>the clue is 3 churches are already too many </li></ul>
  80. 80. Anglican parochial ministry <ul><li>theologically rooted </li></ul><ul><li>pastoral (to all) </li></ul><ul><li>incarnational (residential) </li></ul><ul><li>nurturing in word and sacrament </li></ul>
  81. 81. Learning from experience <ul><li>The responses to the survey leave no doubt that this notion of time-related over-extension taps deeply into the experiences of rural clergy and helps them to articulate the factors that generate pressures within their lives. </li></ul>
  82. 82. Learning from experience <ul><li>They are torn by trying to share themselves between different communities. At the heart of the classic model of Anglican parochial ministry was the incarnational theology of the resident priest living among and sharing in the lives of the people of the community. </li></ul>
  83. 83. Learning from experience <ul><li>Here are people who feel that more demands are being placed on them than they are able to meet. They find that they do not have time to fulfil the ministry that they would find rewarding. </li></ul>
  84. 84. Learning from experience <ul><li>In the multi-parish benefice this can no longer be the case. In the new situation the priest can only pretend to be an indigenous part of the community, and pretence is profoundly unsatisfactory. </li></ul>
  85. 85. Learning from experience <ul><li>The experience of stress resulting from time-related over-extension is indicative of a deeper malaise in the rural church in which changed practice has not been resourced by a theology capable of making the new practice coherent. </li></ul>
  86. 86. Learning from experience <ul><li>The number of churches in the benefice is largely irrelevant. The benefice of three churches has already over-extended the priest, and the adding of further churches does not make matters much worse. </li></ul>
  87. 87. Learning from experience <ul><li>In one sense, this might sound like good news to the church strategists who are planning ever-larger benefices. In another sense, however, this may be very bad news if the threshold of acceptability was already passed with three churches. </li></ul>
  88. 88. Practical conclusions
  89. 89. Theological affirmation <ul><li>Reaffirm a theology that is </li></ul><ul><li>episcopal and diocesan </li></ul><ul><li>parochial and pastoral </li></ul><ul><li>incarnational and catholic </li></ul><ul><li>nurturing in word and sacrament </li></ul>
  90. 90. Pastoral provision <ul><li>retain and re-establish parsonages </li></ul><ul><li>recruit and train deployable NSM ministry </li></ul>
  91. 91. Rediscover discipleship <ul><li>the Bangor Exploring Faith Programme </li></ul><ul><li>BA in Theology for Discipleship and Ministry </li></ul><ul><li>3 x 20 credit modules per year </li></ul><ul><li>local education groups </li></ul><ul><li>facilitators </li></ul>
  92. 92. Curriculum: year 1 <ul><li>beginning the NT </li></ul><ul><li>encountering God’s World </li></ul><ul><li>call and vocation </li></ul>
  93. 93. Curriculum: year 2 <ul><li>beginning the OT </li></ul><ul><li>mission and service </li></ul><ul><li>the church and other faiths </li></ul>
  94. 94. Curriculum: year 3 <ul><li>Jesus and the Gospels </li></ul><ul><li>God as Trinity </li></ul><ul><li>pastoral </li></ul>
  95. 95. Curriculum: year 4 <ul><li>Paul for today </li></ul><ul><li>Worship </li></ul><ul><li>Christian ethics </li></ul>
  96. 96. Assessment <ul><li>reflections from local groups (1500 words) </li></ul><ul><li>essay testing academic outcomes (1500 words) </li></ul><ul><li>application (1500 words) </li></ul>
  97. 97. The Pastor as Juggler: the challenge of multiple rural parishes Leslie J Francis

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