Why Ministry Areas? The first of a series. Please read carefully and pass on questions to PCC members
The concept of Ministry Areas is designed to make us more effective in our service to Jesus Christ. Together we are stronger and Ministry Areas can help to unlock our potential for a flourishing and more positive future where we can do so much more for our congregations and communities rather than managing steady decline. The next phase of implementing the Vision requires us to be bold. Covid-19 has forced us to re-imagine church, and while we have risen to the challenge there is more we need to do to emerge from this crisis stronger and fit for the future. There are those who need our help both now and in the future. Becoming a Ministry Area means sharing your parishes skills and experience with others so all have an opportunity to support each other and flourish. You can share the gospel message with more people as a Ministry Area than you can as a single priest in a single parish.
• Sharing workload across a larger leadership team of lay people and clergy means removing some of the pressures clergy are currently under. The wellbeing of our clergy and volunteers will always be a priority.
• More lay roles will free clergy up to do more pastoral care.
• Easier to cover holidays and days off, and so worship and outreach can continue.
• Bigger pool of volunteers with a range of skills to support the leadership team.
• Our positive impact in the communities we serve will be greater. We can reach more people with fewer resources – crucial as we begin our Young Faith Matters work and Vision delivery. Mission Enablers, Outreach Workers and Engagement Workers will only be truly effective if they can engage with as many people as possible. Ministry Areas will facilitate a far greater reach, helping to achieve more local mission and ministry goals
. • By forming Ministry Areas, more resources and more volunteers will be available and outreach projects can be bigger, bolder, more diverse and have more impact than ever before.
• There can be greater resilience in the service pattern involving a greater number of clergy and lay ministers. There can be different styles of worship either regularly or on occasions and special services that become viable if people from across the Ministry Area attend instead of from just one or two churches. Ministry Areas bring mutual support and a response to a generous God.
• Ministry Areas move away from covering the costs of ministry for one’s own narrow area to supporting the wider ministry of your area and your neighbours. Sharing your gifts both financial and skills with others is an act of profound generosity. Reducing burdens
• Capacity within the Parish Support team is limited but moving to Ministry Areas means we can do so much more and make a real impact in helping congregations and Ministry Areas. Supporting around 30 Ministry Areas will be more efficient with better outcomes than stretching already thin resources to reach 100+ parishes.
• Ministry Areas will reduce bureaucracy and duplication especially in finance, administration and meetings. Safeguarding, for example will be a Ministry Area responsibility rather than focused on each individual church. The workload can be shared and eased by having greater experience to draw upon across the Ministry Area. Treasurers working together lifts the burden of financial responsibility from just one person's shoulders. Wardens will be able to offer advice to one another from their past experience.
• Sustaining life in our churches and maintaining property will be easier by spreading the load in a Ministry Area and considering the most effective use for each building in growing the Kingdom of God.
• The rising cost of parish share is a concern to most congregations, and if we fail to change the current parish system and reach out to more people this anxiety is not going to disappear but only grow.