Training Ministers

Students train with us through a mixture of residential weekends, online material, local tutor groups and through their home setting.

We act as a dispersed community, held together in prayer and support. The deep strength of this is that the student’s academic learning and prayerful reflection is earthed in their practical context at every stage. Training Ministers are a key component in this.

What Training Ministers Do

Training Ministers are part of the Sarum course by helping the student relate their training to their local context. They are appointed by Sarum in consultation with the student, the sponsoring diocese or denomination, and the prospective Training Minister. It is an unpaid but rewarding role with important responsibilities which are for the benefit of the student’s formation in ministry. These are:

  • To support and encourage the student in their vocation, and to pray with and for them.
  • To meet for a reflective supervision with the student twice per module.
  • To help the student arrange opportunities for pastoral and preaching exercises as required in modules.
  • To make a priority of attending two Training Minister Days a year at Sarum, and one meeting in the home context in the first year, and to be in contact with Staff Consultants as appropriate.
  • To contribute to interim and final reports on the student.
  • To advise Sarum at an early opportunity if a change in Training Minister is needed for any reason.

We ask that Training Ministers and Students create a Training Partnership Agreement at the beginning of their work together, and to revise them annually, even if they already know each other well. This helps define the purpose of the reflective supervision meetings and serves as a marker of the student’s progress in formation.

Who should be a Training Minister

Training Ministers are frequently the incumbent or pastor of a student’s home church, but they don’t have to be. Associate or recently retired clergy often take on the role, or lay people who have an understanding of the process of training the student is going through.

We ask that, wherever possible, the Training Minister is not the student’s line manager if they are employed in some way by their home church, for instance as a church administrator. What is necessary is that the Training Minister is someone who will give the student guided space so they can reflect and discuss how their learning applies to their context and themselves.