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Source: (consider it) Thread: Whom shall we send? The Vocations Thread
Rosa Gallica officinalis
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# 3886

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How's everyone settling in to new colleges/ courses etc?

I've reached the other end of the process, and have applied for a post-curacy post, and am now waiting with trepidation to find out if I'll get an interview. [Ultra confused]

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Piglet
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quote:
Originally posted by wheelie racer:
... how the church deals with/responds to disabled clergy ...

My only experience of a disabled clergyman was about 30 years ago in Orkney where the (Church of Scotland) minister of Hoy and the South Isles suffered with (I think) Parkinson's disease. He could walk, but in a very jerky and difficult-looking way, and drove an adapted car. I remember being very impressed the first time we saw him - he hadn't been in his post very long, but the elders from his church had already got down to a fine art exactly what sort of help he needed, and when; I'm assuming he must have let them know right at the outset what his needs were.

We couldn't help thinking that his particular parish was probably about the worst one you could imagine for someone with his disabilities (having to clamber on and off small boats, that sort of thing) but it didn't seem to daunt him in the least.

I wish you all the best in your vocation.

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Bostonman
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I've been feeling a calling to ordained ministry pretty strongly and consistently for the last year and a half or so, and my partner, her family, my family, and my current community members have been very encouraging. It's only grown stronger as time goes on. I'm taking my first "official step" this week when I meet with my priest -- and all my doubts and insecurities are surfacing! The church couldn't possibly think I'm called, could they? I'm so new! (or young or ...) Anyway best wishes for all of you further down the road, and a humble request for your prayers this week. Let's hope I actually get up the courage to bring the topic up at all.
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Raptor Eye
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[Votive] For Bostonman.

My God's will be done, and may you be blessed with his peace and strength as you explore your vocation.

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Be still, and know that I am God! Psalm 46.10

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Evensong
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quote:
Originally posted by Bostonman:
I've been feeling a calling to ordained ministry pretty strongly and consistently for the last year and a half or so, and my partner, her family, my family, and my current community members have been very encouraging. It's only grown stronger as time goes on. I'm taking my first "official step" this week when I meet with my priest -- and all my doubts and insecurities are surfacing! The church couldn't possibly think I'm called, could they? I'm so new! (or young or ...) Anyway best wishes for all of you further down the road, and a humble request for your prayers this week. Let's hope I actually get up the courage to bring the topic up at all.

I think you'll be awesome. [Big Grin]

[Votive] [Votive]

How did the meeting with your priest go?

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Bostonman
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It was great! He's excited. I'm excited. Couldn't have been better.

Now the long, slow march begins...

Thank you for your prayers.

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Piglet
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Glad to hear it went well, Bostonman.

Good luck and [Votive] for you on your new journey.

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I may not be on an island any more, but I'm still an islander.
alto n a soprano who can read music

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Jengie jon

Semper Reformanda
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Bostonman

Hope it goes well but DO NOT let them rush you through. I have sometimes seen, that when a face fits, things progress very quickly indeed. This in my experience is often a bad thing as it means a person comes to the next stage underprepared. At worst it can lead to a wrong decision, but even if not it can lead to unhelpful situations. It maybe a long process but you actually need that process to prepare for what is coming.

Jengie

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Cenobite
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quote:
Originally posted by Rosa Gallica officinalis:
How's everyone settling in to new colleges/ courses etc?

I've reached the other end of the process, and have applied for a post-curacy post, and am now waiting with trepidation to find out if I'll get an interview. [Ultra confused]

[Votive] for you in this next stage Rosa

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Cenobite: means "Common Life"; cenobites lived in community, serving one another and the rest of humanity.

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Pomona
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quote:
Originally posted by wheelie racer:
So, after nearly 15 years of running, I've come to the point where I can't run away from ordination any longer. I am looking at going down the Minister in secular employment route. Anyone have experience of this? Also currently more than a little anxious about the fact that I am disabled and frequently use a wheelchair and wondering very much how the church deals with/ responds to disabled clergy and how much this will come into discussions in coming weeks/ months as part of the discernment process. Mel

An ordinand in his third year of training is on placement with my university's chaplaincy, and is a wheelchair user. Tonight at our chaplaincy discussion group he talked about going for ordination as a disabled person, and to be honest the most shocking thing was that most theological colleges in England and Wales are not wheelchair accessible. Only three colleges were accessible when he was looking at colleges - Oak Hill, St John's Nottingham and one in Wales (don't know which one, sorry, but it's A-C). Now Cuddesdon has had new buildings built, that is also partly accessible, but I was still horrified by the lack of accessibility for disabled people with a calling to the priesthood. I will send you a PM with his details if you'd like to get in contact with him.

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Consider the work of God: Who is able to straighten what he has bent? [Ecclesiastes 7:13]

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Albertus
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The one is Wales would be St Michael's Llandaff- there is only the one here. It might have looked A-C to him (if he was comparing it to Oak Hill and St John's) but it isn't particularly; as the only college for the Province it works, AIUI very successfully, across the range of churchmanship.

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Jante
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quote:
Now Cuddesdon has had new buildings built, that is also partly accessible, but I was still horrified by the lack of accessibility for disabled people with a calling to the priesthood. I will send you a PM with his details if you'd like to get in contact with him.


However Cuddesdon have had disabled people in the past- and have done what they can to adapt the old buildings to help them, and as you say have now built new buildings which are wheelchair friendly.

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My blog http://vicarfactorycalling.blogspot.com/

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Rosa Gallica officinalis
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No interview. Sometimes I really wish God would write things in big letters in the sky.

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Come for tea, come for tea, my people.

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Evensong
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quote:
Originally posted by Rosa Gallica officinalis:
No interview.

Not sure of the system in the UK, but I hope you applied for more than one?

Stand Tall. One will eventually come. [Votive]

quote:
Originally posted by Rosa Gallica officinalis:
Sometimes I really wish God would write things in big letters in the sky.

Hell yeah!

I'm up for ordination to the diaconate shortly and all I have running through my head is Psalm 23 - tho I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil, for you are with me....

Somebody please tell me this is normal.

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a theological scrapbook

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pererin
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quote:
Originally posted by Albertus:
The one is Wales would be St Michael's Llandaff- there is only the one here. It might have looked A-C to him (if he was comparing it to Oak Hill and St John's) but it isn't particularly; as the only college for the Province it works, AIUI very successfully, across the range of churchmanship.

I've known some Con-Evo types who seemed to like it there.

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"They go to and fro in the evening, they grin like a dog, and run about through the city." (Psalm 59.6)

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Amos

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quote:
Originally posted by Rosa Gallica officinalis:
No interview. Sometimes I really wish God would write things in big letters in the sky.

Hang in there. Remember the Persistent Widow. Also, if you haven't made an appointment to see John Lee, the Clergy Appointments Advisor, it's a good idea--he's a good man.

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At the end of the day we face our Maker alongside Jesus--ken

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Avila
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quote:
Originally posted by Albertus:
The one is Wales would be St Michael's Llandaff- there is only the one here. It might have looked A-C to him (if he was comparing it to Oak Hill and St John's) but it isn't particularly; as the only college for the Province it works, AIUI very successfully, across the range of churchmanship.

When Welsh ordinands still had the option of applying to english colleges (before the province realised it couldn't afford to pay for a college and pay other colleges to take students) it was more AC, also more gay friendly than other colleges so that influenced some of the english ordinands I was there with. As a low church Methodist it was a culture shock, and it wasn't that conservative friendly at all.

Now that the full range of church life is part of it the dynamic will have changed a lot - as a lot of the feel of it came from students rather than structure, so turnover means culture shifts naturally.

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Avila
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quote:
Originally posted by Jante:
quote:
Now Cuddesdon has had new buildings built, that is also partly accessible, but I was still horrified by the lack of accessibility for disabled people with a calling to the priesthood. I will send you a PM with his details if you'd like to get in contact with him.


However Cuddesdon have had disabled people in the past- and have done what they can to adapt the old buildings to help them, and as you say have now built new buildings which are wheelchair friendly.
The problem with older buildings is a major issue, and will be in the churches served after training - yes there is room for a ramp but in a conversation area or listed so you will have to make use of a portable one. So you can't be the first there because someone else needs to unlock and put the ramp down etc....

Just a reflection of a situation in one of my churches - and thinking about if I or one of the key stewards was a wheelchair user. That and the need to get to toilets in the hall behind when geography means it is a lethally steep lane!

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http://aweebleswonderings.blogspot.com/

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orinocco
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Just thought I would pop in and give an update, I have been meeting with the Vocations Advisor and I think that seems to have gone well. I am now being sent on a six week placement to a different parish. This is partly to help me reflect on ministry in a different context but also as I stammer they want to see how I get on with speaking to people and forming relationships in a congregation where I am not known.

Wheelie Racer, I know my disability is very different to yours but my expereince is that it has been raised as an issue, and that is part of the reson for my placement but they do seem to be saying OK, you have this issue, but lets see if we can make it work.

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overground, underground, wombling free

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deusluxmea
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prayers for you and all on this thread.

I have come back from a retreat with the same irritating sense of calling that has lingered for four years. I don't know what to do. Or, I do know what to do, but I don't think I can do it.

Can I ask for thoughts on how people discerned the difference between a diaconal and priestly vocation?

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sospan
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quote:
Originally posted by deusluxmea:
prayers for you and all on this thread.

I have come back from a retreat with the same irritating sense of calling that has lingered for four years. I don't know what to do. Or, I do know what to do, but I don't think I can do it.

Can I ask for thoughts on how people discerned the difference between a diaconal and priestly vocation?


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sospan
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What I should have said above is.........

I’m going down the diaconate route at the moment – local panel in 2 weeks. Discerning between deacon and priest vocations isn’t easy – not least because a priest is also, and will always be, a deacon.

For me, part of it has been the external call. I have people nudging me to explore ordination for a long time – nearly ten years. However, things have always held me back, until recently. Independently of each other, and within 24 hours, two members of the clergy approached me and said, “Diaconate, not priest, but diaconate”. They were very specific; although they and others have since gone on to say that I should not rule out looking at priest.

The role of a deacon seems to fit with who I am, where I am in life, and where my skills and gifts are. When I look at the words from the ordination service, it’s not so much a “no” from me to being a priest but it’s more a big “yes” to the diaconate – reading the words is a bit like falling in love! If God wants me to do more – well okay then. But at the heart of my calling is the role of the deacon – and it always will be whether I end up ordained or not.

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Raptor Eye
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[Votive] For you sospan, and for deusluxmea, and for all as you discern your calling.

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Be still, and know that I am God! Psalm 46.10

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Piglet
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Sospan, it may be that at the moment the right path for you is the "permanent" Diaconate, but it doesn't rule out eventual priesthood. We've got an Ordination here on Monday: two of the candidates were made deacons earlier this year and the other one has been a deacon for 10 years. There's no reason why one has to lead immediately to the other.

As Raptor Eye said, [Votive] for you as you decide what course to take.

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I may not be on an island any more, but I'm still an islander.
alto n a soprano who can read music

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Pomona
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# 17175

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There are things I want to post but they deal with Dead Horses in relation to ordination - should I post here, or in DH?

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Consider the work of God: Who is able to straighten what he has bent? [Ecclesiastes 7:13]

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Welease Woderwick

Sister Incubus Nightmare
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quote:
Originally posted by Jade Constable:
There are things I want to post but they deal with Dead Horses in relation to ordination - should I post here, or in DH?

This is under consideration, Jade C, a reply as soon as possible.

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I give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way.
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What part of Matt. 7:1 don't you understand?

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Welease Woderwick

Sister Incubus Nightmare
# 10424

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quote:
Originally posted by Jade Constable:
There are things I want to post but they deal with Dead Horses in relation to ordination - should I post here, or in DH?

Post away but be aware that if it starts to develop as a DH-type debate we may ask you to take it there - AS is very much for support style posts rather than debating issues.

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I give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way.
Fancy a break in South India?
Accessible Homestay Guesthouse in Central Kerala, contact me for details

What part of Matt. 7:1 don't you understand?

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Carys

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# 78

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quote:
Originally posted by deusluxmea:

Can I ask for thoughts on how people discerned the difference between a diaconal and priestly vocation?

My vicar described those as fascinating conversations in our conversation about vocation on Thursday. That was a fascinating conversation in itself (although not on that topic) which has brought up a possible path which at one level sounds good but also scares me rigid.

Carys

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O Lord, you have searched me and know me
You know when I sit and when I rise

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Welease Woderwick

Sister Incubus Nightmare
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I think God quite enjoys scaring people rigid then leaving them with the quite distinct feeling that being scared rigid can end as a Good Thong.

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I give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way.
Fancy a break in South India?
Accessible Homestay Guesthouse in Central Kerala, contact me for details

What part of Matt. 7:1 don't you understand?

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Jack the Lass

Ship's airhead
# 3415

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quote:
Originally posted by Welease Woderwick:
... being scared rigid can end as a Good Thong.

Best typo ever. Wodders wins the internet today [Smile]

More seriously, my prayers for all of you who are trying to figure out what, who and where God is calling you to be. [Votive]

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Pomona
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# 17175

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quote:
Originally posted by Welease Woderwick:
quote:
Originally posted by Jade Constable:
There are things I want to post but they deal with Dead Horses in relation to ordination - should I post here, or in DH?

Post away but be aware that if it starts to develop as a DH-type debate we may ask you to take it there - AS is very much for support style posts rather than debating issues.
Thanks - I wanted to post about experiences of DDOs/BAPs/the ordination process in general, but definitely not a debate on the rights or wrongs of the situation. Just the practicalities, if that makes sense?

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Consider the work of God: Who is able to straighten what he has bent? [Ecclesiastes 7:13]

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Welease Woderwick

Sister Incubus Nightmare
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It makes sense to me - off you go!

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I give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way.
Fancy a break in South India?
Accessible Homestay Guesthouse in Central Kerala, contact me for details

What part of Matt. 7:1 don't you understand?

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Carys

Ship's Celticist
# 78

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quote:
Originally posted by Welease Woderwick:
I think God quite enjoys scaring people rigid then leaving them with the quite distinct feeling that being scared rigid can end as a Good Thong.

I think it's part of letting him be in control, that is scary, but so very right. Heart is actually quite peaceful about the idea but head is going "Noooooooo".

Carys

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O Lord, you have searched me and know me
You know when I sit and when I rise

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Thurible
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I was talking to a friend who is in The Process and he surprised me by suggesting that, if recommended, he was seriously considering going to a college very different from his own tradition (he too is an FiF, Society of Mary, Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament type and is looking at a college renowned for its evangelicalism). I couldn’t decide whether or not I thought it barking and so told him that I’d think about it.

Does anyone have any experience of/thoughts about doing the same sort of thing – in whichever direction?

Thurible

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"I've been baptised not lobotomised."

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Carys

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A former chaplain of a high ish liberal tradition chose to train at Ridley to challenge her preconceptions. Part of me says that for a FinF person a college fully committed to women's priestly ministry might be more of a challenge than an evangelical one that is unsure about it.

Carys

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O Lord, you have searched me and know me
You know when I sit and when I rise

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Pomona
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Cheers Woderwick.

So, does anyone have experiences of being openly LGBTQ and navigating the process? My DDO is conservative (striped shirts!). I am fully in line with Issues In Sexuality so I can't be caught up on that, but wondering if being open with DDOs/BAPs has brought positives, negatives or no impact at all for anyone?

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Consider the work of God: Who is able to straighten what he has bent? [Ecclesiastes 7:13]

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Poppy

Ship's dancing cat
# 2000

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My experience of the vocations process is that you do have to be open about major issues in your life and that will include sexuality, divorce, children, health and all that we bring to the table. But it is more about how you reflect on and find God in a situation and how that impacts on prayer life and ministry rather than the gory detail.

Whether sexuality is the first thing you discuss with your DDO is about boundaries perhaps.

On a side note I'm somewhat surprised that striped shirts are an indicator of conservatism. Round here the conservatives don't wear clericals at all so maybe it is a regional thing!

[ 05. November 2013, 10:49: Message edited by: Poppy ]

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At the still point of the turning world - there the dance is...

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Pomona
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# 17175

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quote:
Originally posted by Poppy:
My experience of the vocations process is that you do have to be open about major issues in your life and that will include sexuality, divorce, children, health and all that we bring to the table. But it is more about how you reflect on and find God in a situation and how that impacts on prayer life and ministry rather than the gory detail.

Whether sexuality is the first thing you discuss with your DDO is about boundaries perhaps.

On a side note I'm somewhat surprised that striped shirts are an indicator of conservatism. Round here the conservatives don't wear clericals at all so maybe it is a regional thing!

Not sure I've ever encountered clergy who don't wear clericals at all and I've encountered some spectacularly conservative evangelicals - IME striped shirts are a step up from pale blue, although no clericals is probably a step up from that.

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Consider the work of God: Who is able to straighten what he has bent? [Ecclesiastes 7:13]

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Thurible
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# 3206

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quote:
Originally posted by Jade Constable:
So, does anyone have experiences of being openly LGBTQ and navigating the process? My DDO is conservative (striped shirts!). I am fully in line with Issues In Sexuality so I can't be caught up on that, but wondering if being open with DDOs/BAPs has brought positives, negatives or no impact at all for anyone?

I don't have experience of being such but do have experience of navigating the process in two dioceses. In both, the DDO was quite happy for candidates to be gay (the first was pre-civil partnerships) and, in the second instance, happy for candidates to be partnered. What both were determined on, though, was that the candidate understood and sought to live by the guidelines in Issues in Human Sexuality. If they were able to write that on the reference, it shouldn't come up at BAP.

Thurible

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"I've been baptised not lobotomised."

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ButchCassidy
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# 11147

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What others have said.

I'm one of that alphabet soup, and so (by common report) is my DDO, but we've never mentioned it to each other. If I did mention my orientation, I suspect she would say 'why should I care', unless it had some bearing on another aspect of my personality. I've never felt the need to raise it - its not a question of not being open, but IME its irrelevant to the sort of stuff they want to know about you. They seem to think your personality is shaped by factors other than your orientation (shock horror I know..).

Did mention it to another vocations person further back in the process, as an experiment, and they were pretty chilled too. Apparently at the BAP you have to tick the Issues box, as you've said, but as said, thats 'ask and move on'.

The only thing could be is that they will want to talk to your significant parner/spouse, if applicable, to check they're behind you, know what being a vicar's spouse entails etc. So there it might obviously come up, and I don't know how people deal with that. But AFAIK you're not in that position (and nor am I praise God).

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Pyx_e

Quixotic Tilter
# 57

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Being a member of the LGBT community is no bar to ordination, is not “a sin” and at every BAP I have been to we are reminded by the Panel Secretary that we cannot discriminate. On any grounds.

That said, there is always “Issues on Human Sexuality.” Any candidate, gay, straight, single, divorced, married, remarried or a widow comes under scrutiny about the quality and nature of their relationships. Rightly so. Being ordained gives power, power can (and is) abused. If a person is not self-aware, is in a period of (or recovering from) crisis, grief or trauma then this is a concern. If a candidate lacks common sense or has shown incontinence or has a flippant, immature attitude then this is a major concern. If any candidate has not shown some reflection of their sexual self in relation to God’s word, the teaching of the Church and the realities of their lives then what the hell are they doing offering themselves in the first place?

It is (in my view) an injustice that same sex stable committed relationships are not seen in the same light as marrieds but this is the institution we are in and people are offering themselves to serve. A person may not agree with 30mph speed limits but passing the driving test and then bombing around at 70mph is never going to be a win friends and influence people.

Fly Safe Pyx_e

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It is better to be Kind than right.

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3rdFooter
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# 9751

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quote:
Originally posted by Thurible:
I was talking to a friend who is in The Process and he surprised me by suggesting that, if recommended, he was seriously considering going to a college very different from his own tradition (he too is an FiF, Society of Mary, Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament type and is looking at a college renowned for its evangelicalism). I couldn’t decide whether or not I thought it barking and so told him that I’d think about it.

Does anyone have any experience of/thoughts about doing the same sort of thing – in whichever direction?

Thurible

No direct experience but I did observe, and at times council, some of my colleagues in substantial stress within my fairly mixed college. Ordination training is a challenging time and if collegiate worship is another layer of stress (rather than a time of fellowship) then I would be concerned.

Going to an open but trending evangelical would probably be OK (Cranmer Hall, St John's possibly). I would suggest that Oak Hill would have the potential for disaster.

I admire your friend's urge to challenge their thinking but you also need to survive The Process.

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3F - Shunter in the sidings of God's Kingdom

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Zacchaeus
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# 14454

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Our vicar trained on a regional training course. Which tend to have a very mixed bag of ordinands and churchmanship on them.

They say that that was one the best things about the experience, learning to understand and get along with people of many different persuasions,FiF, charismatic, anglo catholic.

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Niminypiminy
Shipmate
# 15489

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^ This is indeed a real strength of regional training courses.

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Lives of the Saints: songs by The Unequal Struggle
http://www.theunequalstruggle.com/

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geroff
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# 3882

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Bump.
As I am sure there are still many new vocations this thread needs to be kept going.
As for us, we are nearing the end of our curacy, looking to move on soon. Please pray for Rosa G O and me at this time.

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"The first principle in science is to invent something nice to look at and then decide what it can do." Rowland Emett 1906-1990

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Carys

Ship's Celticist
# 78

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Prayers for you and Rosa GO Geroff.

Can I ask for prayers too, coming close to sending an email to start exploring the path that was suggested in recent chat with vicar.

Carys

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O Lord, you have searched me and know me
You know when I sit and when I rise

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Laxton's Superba
Shipmate
# 228

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I have a new BAP date!
Going through all the forms again.
For anyone who went to a second BAP, how much of what you write before did you use the second time?

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aig
Shipmate
# 429

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No advice - but lots of prayers for your BAP. [Votive]
Where and when is it?

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That's not how we do it here.......

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harmony hope
Shipmate
# 4070

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Hi Laxton's Superba - I went through it twice so please feel free to pm me if you'd like to ask any questions! (By the way my second time was lovely [Smile] )
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uncletoby

hobbyhorsical
# 13067

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quote:
Originally posted by Zacchaeus:
Our vicar trained on a regional training course. Which tend to have a very mixed bag of ordinands and churchmanship on them.

They say that that was one the best things about the experience, learning to understand and get along with people of many different persuasions,FiF, charismatic, anglo catholic.

It's worth mentioning here that in Cambridge, training takes place to a large extent through the Cambridge Theological Federation, which means that students from both Anglican theological colleges, as well as from URC, Methodist, Roman Catholic and Orthodox Colleges, are taught quite a lot of their courses together (it varies depending on the academic pathway you take). So you can be rooted in your own tradition, whilst learning from people from different traditions.

I don't know if it works in a similar way in Oxford.

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`` L--d! I cannot look at it ----

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