National training programme for pioneer curates

Smiling group in cassocks without dog collars, holding new stoles

CMS's graduating pioneer ordinands for 2022 - there is now specially designed training on offer during their curacies

Announcing a supportive learning environment to bring pioneer curates together as our IME2 training for ordained pioneers goes national

With many dioceses only having one or two pioneer curates, it can be hard to provide specific training. I’m pleased to say that we can now offer such training across the Church of England.

This training programme emerged from the South Central Regional Training Partnership Pioneer Hub, which CMS has hosted for some years now, in response to the experience of the six dioceses involved.

We ran it for three years and it was soon opened up to other neighbouring dioceses as word spread. Since autumn 2021 this programme has now been rolled out to the whole of the Church of England.

Any curate who has been designated a pioneer either by going through a pioneer BAP or being recognised as a curate by their diocese can access the training. Last year 35 curates from 14 dioceses came together for sessions on pioneer leadership and listening to context.

The programme consists of a rolling scheme of six topics explored in one all-day in-person session and two half-day online sessions:

  • Listening in context
  • Pioneer leadership
  • Pioneer priest and pastor
  • Pioneer spirituality
  • Resilient pioneer ministry
  • Pioneer ecclesiology

In line with so much of CMS’s training, it is the pioneer community that forms by creating this space for pioneers to learn together that is really key.

On the whole ordained pioneers in most dioceses remain something of a rare species, and at times misunderstood. While this is slowly changing, bringing curates together like this is still really important. The gatherings are a place of affirmation and shared learning for those on the programme.

The Pioneer IME2 programme is co-hosted by Richard Passmore and Paul Bradbury. Richard is an experienced pioneer and leader of the Northern Mission Centre in Cumbria. Paul is an ordained pioneer minister and leader of Poole Missional Communities. Paul hosts the curates from the southern Archdiocese in person in Oxford with those in the north meeting with Richard in Penrith. The whole group then joins together for two sessions online.

More info and link to the form to access the course is available here:

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