Locally trained clergy rising force in Anglican Church of Canada

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Anglican Church of Canada reports that locally trained clergy are a rising force in rural and northern dioceses:

The following is the first instalment of a two-part article on locally trained ministry within the Anglican Church of Canada.

On March 17 the Territory of the People, formerly known as the Anglican Parishes of the Central Interior, ordained its first two locally trained priests. Having each previously served for one year as deacons and undertaken all their studies locally, Martina Duncan and Angus Muir were set to join the team at St. Alban’s Anglican Church in Ashcroft, B.C. following their ordination to the priesthood.

The increased role of locally trained ministry—in which leaders and candidates for clerical positions receive all their studies and training from within their own local community—is a growing trend across the Anglican Church of Canada. But it is in rural and northern dioceses that locally trained ministry is making its greatest leaps and bounds as a vital part of wider Anglican ministry.

National Indigenous Anglican Bishop Mark MacDonald said that locally trained clergy, mostly non-stipendiary, are particularly common in areas such as northern Manitoba, Ontario, and Saskatchewan. He recalled that almost all clergy in the Diocese of Alaska during his tenure as bishop there were locally trained.

“The model that we’ve been working with of parish churches, each of which has at least one sort of full-time priest and a building … that model is rapidly failing,” he said.

“Many of those do continue and will continue. But as a uniform model for the whole church, that one’s coming apart … What we’re looking at is the flexibility of ministry to meet a flexibility of Christian communities, and I think our faith communities, our congregations, are starting to look somewhat different.”

Part 2 is here.

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