Reader Ministry Training gets vote of confidence
Reader Ministry Training in St Albans Diocese has been given a positive vote of confidence in the recent Periodic External Review to which all ministerial teaching courses in the Church of England are subject. The news comes as Lauryn Awbrey, Reader Ministry Officer, announces her departure after 10 years in post. The report is a massive vote of confidence in all she has done.
The external review team assesses six aspects of Reader Training and responds with commendations, recommendations and findings of confidence, confidence with qualifications or no confidence.
Overall, St Albans Diocese’s Reader Ministry Training is given a ‘confidence’ rating and only two areas out of the six are marked with any qualifications, although recommendations are made across the board for how the course could be even better.
The review found a strong sense of community among participants, teachers and graduates. It commended the quality of teaching and associated materials, and recognised the strength of diocesan support for the training programme and for Reader Ministry, the strength of pastoral support for students and the quality of the teaching accommodation. The course is also commended as providing for a range of different skills and aptitudes.
Lauryn has overseen the transformation of the Reader Training programme over the last ten years from one described in the Review as ‘having no clear timetable or deadline for completion and which didn’t fare very positively in earlier reviews,’ to the present success, based on a partnership with the Eastern Region Ministry Course (which also trains ordinands).
Lauryn says: “One of the stated aims of the course is that each Reader will, we hope, be able to talk about their faith and about Jesus in ways that attract people to want to know more; each Reader will, we hope, live out their faith in ways that show the face of God to those whom they meet. I am particularly pleased that the report reflects this.” It says: ‘Readers come from a diversity of occupations and backgrounds to serve God in a wide variety of situations and as such they are a bridge between the day-to-day life of the world and the church.’
The report also comments: “The diocesan publication ‘So what do Readers really do?’ provides four profiles of recently-licensed Readers and provides evidence of the ways in which mission and evangelism permeate their Reader Ministry. The enthusiasm and commitment of these four Readers shines through in the very different contexts in which they operate. Our interviews with students, past and present, indicated similar commitment to sharing the good news of the gospel and to teaching and learning the faith.” to read the report: www.churchofengland.org/media/4038352/st-albans-final-report-13-sept-2017.docx