Saturday, 31 May 2008

Daily Telegraph: 'Poor quality' of vicars alarms Church leaders

Church of England bishops believe that thousands of vicars are not up to the job, according to a confidential report which found that there are "serious concerns" over the quality of the clergy.

The internal report suggests that the standard of new clergy has dropped, because of the need to fill vacant posts, while many vicars who have been in the job for years have lost their energy and enthusiasm.

The Church is to vet applicants for ordination more vigorously and is considering changing its selection criteria and a pay review.

This week the Church introduces new guidelines for clergy in an attempt to improve their preaching. New suggestions include encouraging worshippers to provide feedback on sermons, as well as tips on improving delivery.

The internal report, which was produced by the Ministry Division, the Church body responsible for staff issues, found that a third of bishops believe that more than half of current clergy – as many as 6,000 – are unable to cope.

In addition, 90 per cent of the bishops believe that a third of the new intake of clergy do not have the necessary gifts.

One bishop, who is unnamed, offers a damning verdict. He says: "Truthfully, it is deeply depressing. ­Egotism rules. Contemporary worship is feeble, 'sweet', and leads no one to the Majesty ­of God." Read more
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Anonymous said...

Even better, let's get rid of the idiots in the "Club" - the House of Bishops - and start again with some gospel-minded evangelists.

Q. Who selected the ordinands they are complaining about?

Q. Who sponsored them for training?

Q. Who supervises the training schemes they attend?

Answers on a postcard, please, to the House of Bishops.....

David Cohen, London

reverendlee said...

At last the Church has woken up! When I went to university I was 29 years old with work experience of the previous 13 years! I was "turned down", while the 21 year old graduate was not!! From my experience, congregations want to "connect" with you & having spent no more than 1 year as a Pastoral Assistant at the request of a selection committee offers little. We continue to focus upon the "professional" or the new young Graduate being the formula, but what about the Factory Worker, the Office worker, the Retail Worker or Bus Driver & Milkman along with the Postman who has not seen inside a classroom since they were 16 years old? If we refocused, then the mess would not happen. Maybe prior to ordination, everyone needs to preach to the congregation they may serve.
While we all come from different "factions" of Anglicanism:Anglo-Catholic, Liberal, Central, Praybook Evangelical & Charismatic; should be not also be well versed in Historical Anglicanism?
The US have gone overboard with clergy must first go through vigorous educational program, but the "people skills" need to replace the swelling head!