Deacons and Curates
Those successfully completing their Ordination training are ordained as a Deacon to start to serve in a specific parish as a Curate.
During this time a Curate will complete the Initial Ministerial Education phase two (IME2) training. Curacy is a vital time in which newly ordained ministers continue to learn and grow in the roles to which God has called them.
After a year of service, and completing the post-ordination training, a deacon will be ordained priest.
I was working as an office manager for the family business which enfolded multiple roles! After I had come back to faith, I increasingly spoke about Christ to my wife Caroline, who one day proclaimed that I would be a great vicar! After passing a Bishop’s Advisory Panel, I decided that full-time residential training would be most suitable to fully immerse myself in this calling, to rediscover the Anglican Church and having two children this route also enabled me to spend as much time as possible with my family.
I really enjoyed being in the same lectures as ordinands from different theological colleges gaining a broad education and I also valued Texts and Traditions in Christian Spirituality, looking at Christian Mystics through the ages and learning about the use of Icons in the Eastern Orthodox traditions. I really enjoyed the daily offices, morning and evening prayer, and Compline, and the opportunity to learn liturgical forms – learning the rising and falling rhythms of a disciplined prayer life.
I am now serving my curacy in Beccles, my training incumbent is immensely supportive, laid back but incredibly instructive as he shepherds me in the right direction. The biggest change in my life is my reliance on God – I know none of this would be possible were it not for Him and his loving attention to and through me. Now I feel at peace with what I am doing with the life God gave me, and I am embracing wearing black most of the time!
By Ben Edwards
For me, the seeds of vocation were definitely sown as a teenager, worshipping with my local village congregation and being involved in church youth groups and singing with the choir, but it wasn't until university that I really began to discern my vocation. I spent a lot of time in the college chapel, as well a local parish church, and made the most of opportunities to test out my vocation.
I was extremely grateful for the opportunity to work as a pastoral assistant, following university, in a busy North London parish. I then began residential training for ordained ministry. It was great to be back studying - something I have always found formative for my faith and ministry - but I was pleased to have pastoral placements running alongside the academic work, a balance which worked well.
I am now in St Mary's Newmarket and St Agnes's Exning, ideal places to continue my training and formation, not least because of their hospitality and openness to having a curate! It's been wonderful having other opportunities too, and I've spent some time in healthcare chaplaincy, as well as an extended period in a rural benefice. Hopefully I have a good foundation in a breadth of contexts for ministry, and I will be well placed to discern where I might be called to next.
By Max Drinkwater