The Revd Sonia Barron
Diocesan Director of Ordinands and Vocations
All Christians are called to serve Christ in every aspect of their lives – at home, in their work, in the church
Theologians spend a lot of time debating at what point discipleship becomes ministry, but what we do know is that we are ALL called to serve God in different ways.
The Church of England wants to encourage gifted and committed young men and women, from every background, to consider whether God is calling them into ordained ministry as priests. In Lincoln diocese we want to encourage Christian young people to think about ordained and lay ministry in the Church of England.
In a rapidly changing world, it is important for the church to reach new and younger generations, and find creative ways that honour all Anglican church traditions but also have a missional outlook and connect with those outside the church.
This challenge requires those with fresh vision and inspiration and young leaders who will be key to shaping the way forward for the Church of England. As a diocese, we want to encourage those considering both lay and ordained vocations. Our Young Vocations Advocates and mentors are available to chat to as a first step in this process.
The Diocese of Lincoln Young Vocations Advocates role is to encourage young people to take seriously the call from God whatever that might be. If you would like to find out more please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we can put you in touch with them for a chat, or, visit the Church of England website to learn more about lay and ordained vocations here and read about other lay ministries below.
Locally Recognised Ministries
There is a range of ministries, which are authorised or recognised by the local incumbent, church or PCC. These include most work with children and young people, different kinds of pastoral work, leading home groups, running the choir or music group, and many other things. It is up to the local church and person concerned whether any training is undertaken. The links at the bottom of the page will indicate some of the training that may be on offer within the diocese.
Diocesan Authorised Ministries
There are three areas of ministry where, in the Diocese of Lincoln, authorisation is given by the Bishops (this is required by the church’s canon law) and need some kind of training:
- Preaching (this includes responsibility for any talk or activity which would happen in the sermon slot in a Service of the Word)
- Leading services of worship
- Lay funeral ministry
There are also other roles that God might be calling you to do – like being a churchwarden, sides person, or PCC member.
Ministry Experience Scheme
We are also working with the Church of England MES project to provide 18-30 year olds the opportunity to experience the core of ministry within our parishes and study a bit of theology at the same time. Lincoln’s Xperience scheme is offered in both a rural context (Edenham) and urban context (Grantham).
Find out more here.
Meet our Young Vocations Advocates
I was ordained Deacon in September 2020 and am serving my curacy at St George’s Church, Lincoln. My own journey of discernment has been surprising and less than straightforward, but my first inklings of a sense of vocation came as a child and young adult. Because of this, I am keen to support and encourage young people considering any form of vocation with the Church of England.
I trained residentially at St. Stephen’s House, Oxford and was ordained at Michaelmas 2020 to serve my title at All Saints, Lincoln. As a ‘young vocation’ during my discernment, selection and training, I am particularly excited to be able to journey with others in their discernment of what, and to where, they feel that God is calling them to in his Church and in the world.
Do keep a look out on the website for a Young Vocations events where you can hear and learn more about the different ministries – lay and ordained – that God might be calling you to. You will hear real stories from real people involved in ministry of various kinds.