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All baptised Christians are called to use their gifts to serve God and others in the name of Christ. Some do this through particular authorised ministries that serve the ministry and mission of the whole church and work collaboratively at all levels.

Here is a brief outline of the ministries currently available in the diocese.  The training, which may be of interest to all but which is necessary for all who are involved in, or considering, any kind of ministry whether local (e.g. Elders) or national (e.g. Reader ministry or ordination) can be downloaded here:

Basics | PDF  **NEW** a four-session course for groups

The course can be run locally, in a benefice or deanery, for example.  

  • Lay Elders-+

    Lay Elders share in the ministries of leading worship and pastoral care in their local congregation and community, under the authority of the Incumbent. They are chosen by the Incumbent and PCC and commissioned in their parish church by the Bishop or his representative.


    Training for Elder ministry

    The “Basics" course replaces the previous “Getting Started” module, and now has to be completed before commissioning:

    Basics | PDF - a four-session course for groups which may be of interest to all, but which is necessary for all who are involved in, or considering, any kind of ministry, whether local (e.g. Lay Elder ministry) or national (e.g. Reader ministry or ordination).

    “Enhancing Worship” will replace the “Leading Worship” module.  The final revised version is underway and we will include the link here as soon as it is available.  If you would like information about Enhancing Worship before then, please contact Ruth Dennigan by email or phone 07468 474252.  The 'Leading Worship' training can be downloaded here:

    Leading Worship | PDF 

    Pastoral Care training:  The current Pastoral Care module will be replaced by an “Enhancing Pastoral Ministry” course.  Until the revision is made, please download "Pastoral Care":

    Pastoral Care | PDF - an eight-session course for groups.


    Commissioning documents 

    Recommissioning documents

    Contact Lesley Steed, Lay Elders Administrator, for more information.

  • Readers-+

    Readers are nationally accredited lay ministers who are licensed by the Diocesan Bishop to preach, teach and lead worship. They play an important part in nurturing Christian discipleship in the church and wider world. 

    The Warden of Readers is the Bishop of Dunwich, the Rt Revd Dr Mike Harrison, who may be contacted by email or by phone at the Bishops' Office on 01473 252829.

    For further information about discernment and selection, please contact the Deputy Warden of Readers, Malcolm Rittman by email or on 07825 005000.

    Candidates recommended to train for Licensed Lay Ministry as Readers, Lay Pastors or Local Evangelists usually follow a two-year part time programme. The course equips students for ministry by developing: theological and biblical learning, practical ministry skills, personal formation in discipleship and ministry, and collaborative practice. For further information about the training course, please contact Ruth Dennigan.

  • Ordained Ministers-+

    Ordained Ministers (deacons and priests) are called to represent the church in the wider world. They lead the church’s mission and ministry through worship and prayer, preaching and teaching, community engagement and pastoral work.

    For further information about discernment, selection and training, contact the Revd Canon Tim Jones, our Diocesan Director of Ordinands. 










    Some ordained ministers are self-supporting (SSMs) and serve locally, and some are stipendiary. Some are parish-based, while others serve in schools, hospitals, prisons and elsewhere as chaplains.

    For more information about SSM, please contact the Revd Tony Redman, Bishop's Officer for Self Supporting Ministers.

    SSM Easter News 2018 | PDF

  • Pioneer ministry-+

    Pioneers are people called by God who are the first to see and creatively respond to the Holy Spirit’s initiatives with those outside the church; gathering others around them as they seek to establish new contextual Christian community. They combine the ability to see a new future with the skills and gifts to make the future accessible now.

    For more information, please see below.

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