Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Chaplaincy: A vital ministry

John Caperon who was Director of the Bloxham Project in England recently published A Vital Ministry: Chaplaincy in Schools in the Post-Christian Era. I have only just bought it and haven't read it yet. The work in this book comes out of what was done in the Bloxham Project. So what is the Bloxham Project? I think it finished in 2011 but this is what its purpose was:

“The Bloxham Project exists to promote and support the spiritual dimension in education.  Linking school leaders, chaplains, those with pastoral responsibility and subject teachers, the Project works to foster spirituality in schools and to bring to educational practice spiritual insight into the growth and needs of the whole person.   Firmly rooted in the Christian faith, while open to other traditions, the Project offers support for chaplains, school leaders and others engaged in education."

In 2011 the Bloxham Project  completed a major piece of research into school chaplaincy, in collaboration with the Oxford Centre for Ecclesiology and Practical Theology (OxCEPT), the research unit of Ripon College Cuddesdon.

The results of that research can be read here. This might give you some insight into the book.

Some key findings of the report included an outline of the key features of chaplaincy:

  • School chaplains have a specific vocation to work with the young within the extended community of the school: both children, staff, parents and governors – and the community within which the school is set – comprise their ‘parish’.
  • Their work is missional and inclusive: it is a service offered to all by the Church in a context where personal faith commitment may be minimal; it is prime mission in a liminal or frontier context.
  • School chaplains place the pastoral dimension of their vocation as its heart: it is a ministry involving a range of functions, but pastoral care for the person is what matters most.
  • In whatever form and style are appropriate to the context of the school and its pupils, liturgical leadership is treasured by school chaplains as an opportunity to create the conditions in which the presence of God may be experienced.
  • Beyond and through all their ministerial functions, school chaplains exercise a ministry of presence, representing and embodying the Christian faith.

 The research also has chaplains rate the importance of their different functions: 

  • Pastoral: caring for the whole community
  • Spiritual: leading the spiritual life of the community
  • Liturgical: leading prayer and worship
  • Missional: commending the Christian faith and supporting other faiths
  • Prophetic: ‘speaking truth to power'
  • Pedagogic: teaching about the Faith, and catechesis.

Thursday, 20 August 2015

Anglican Schools Australia Conference 2015

Did you attend the 2015 ASA Conference? Either way you can check out some of the content presented at the Conference right here. There was some fantastic content from Sarah Bachelard, Rufus Black, Dan Haeslar and Gillian Moses. I also made my own contribution during the Chaplains Day and as a Keynote.

Thursday, 6 August 2015

Life Vest Inside

Life Vest Inside has some great videos on "the science of"... Check these out: