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New Lay Ministers Licensed and Admitted

by Gerry Lynch last modified 03 Oct, 2017 10:28 AM

Lay ministries started and renewed at Cathedral service

On Saturday 30 September, four new Lay Ministers were admitted and licensed during a joyful service of Choral Evensong at Salisbury Cathedral and others were renewed their admission or were admitted from other Dioceses. 

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Kerri Canepa (Three Valleys Benefice), Michelle Cobley (Oakdale St George), Adrian Light (Weymouth Ridgeway) and Anne Mantle (Vale of Pewsey) are the first to complete the Common Awards course, having studied for three years alongside the ordinands at Sarum College. 

Claire Horton (Atworth with Shaw and Whitley) was also licensed, having completed the course. 

Jenny Baldock, from the Diocese of Winchester, transferred her licence to Salisbury, to serve at Hamworthy, and two LLMs, Barbara Marsden (Lulworths, Winfrith Newburgh and Chaldon) and Linda Rowe (Sherborne with Castleton, Lillington and Longburton), who had transferred from other dioceses during the year, were welcomed.  During the service, some 80 LLMs renewed their commitment to ministry in the presence of a large congregation. 

During the afternoon, Canon Dr Esther Elliott, Learning & Formation Officer and Warden of Readers in the Diocese of Derby, addressed the LLM annual meeting, focusing specifically on Serving Together, the report of the Lay Ministries Working Group, and covering various aspects of Licensed Lay Ministry.  A lively discussion followed as Esther took questions from the floor.  Bishop Karen, Warden of LLMs, thanked the LLMs for their ongoing service in their benefices, mentioning especially the 13 receiving Permission to Officiate today. 

There are currently just under 200 LLMs exercising a wide-ranging ministry in the Diocese.

Claire Horton is one. ‘Five years ago God was calling me to do something,’ she says. Having completed her studies, Claire is now a Licensed Lay Minister (LLM) in the Benefice of Atworth with Shaw and Whitley, near Melksham. 

Before embarking on the LLM programme Claire helped with administration and was involved in putting together services to introduce contemporary worship.

With encouragement from her vicar, Claire set out to explore this calling and attended the Salisbury Diocesan Vocations Day.

Claire says that she felt sure that lay ministry was the pathway for her, and was pleased Sarum College was recommended to her.

“The team at Sarum were amazing,” she says. Claire’s training spanned a period of transition between the Oxford Brookes and Durham University, which now validates the programme.

Being part of that transition was both a privilege and a challenge. Claire says she valued “working with the Sarum College staff and appreciated the training. I also benefited from the Formation Days at Church House.”

She also values the new model of lay and ordained ministry training together.

“Learning alongside one another is so important. That way, collaborative practice begins at the outset and is more likely to encourage a foundation for future working together in parish life,” she says.

A placement at Alabare, as part of the chaplaincy team, working with adults with learning disability ‘was a huge joy and blessing’ and also one that helped her to discern that, although she enjoyed her time there, she recognised that chaplaincy isn’t her calling at this stage: “I realised I have a heart for pioneer ministry in some form,” she says.

Claire says she now approaches her ministry with a different perspective.

“LLM training has helped me to grow – I now feel more confident about preaching and about engaging with scripture.” she says. “I also have a sense of recognition by the church and the congregation, and of having a distinctive role as a bridge between the Church and all aspects of community life.

“Working collaboratively alongside others, I look forward to finding ways to connect with people so that God’s love may be known.”

There is more information about training as a Licensed Lay Minister on this website, or take a look at the LLM page on the Sarum College website.

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