Much of what I spend my time doing is having conversations with amazing people! I am truly blessed in that, as I am sure you can understand. As we are beginning to open up more after lockdowns I am especially pleased when these happen face to face.
Over the past week CCE trustees and staff met together in person for the first time in over 2 years. Whilst a couple of our trustees have moved on to other roles (Fr Adrian Porter SJ and Fr Brendan Clover – Senior Provost at Woodard, who truly were the ones who had the original vision for CCE) we are delighted that Rev Justin White (Senior Provost of Woodard Schools Trust) Catherine Bryan (Assistant Director, CES) and Orla Kearns (Grant Administrator with Porticus) are now fully on-board and involved in moving CCE forwards. We had a time of reflection as to what has been achieved over the past 3 years of CCE and that helped us all to see more clearly how to move forwards.
I am a true believer that building partnerships and planning ahead are key to the foundations of any organisation. CCE is committed to this too and we are excited about the conversations with leaders within the New Testament Church of God as to ways in which, together we can begin to encourage their churches to catch a vision for education chaplaincy and connect with others as they do so.
Lucy Moore (Head of the Growing Faith Foundation) and I spent several hours together this week. Chaplaincy is a key element of the growing vision that is beginning to be worked out and we are delighted that, together we are seeing ways of connecting vision with real opportunities to serve and grow chaplaincy.
Our new Leadership, Ethos and Values course begins this week with several long-serving chaplains participating. This will be a great opportunity to dig a little deeper into the ways in which chaplaincy serves the school and college communities in which participants work. We plan to run this course again next academic year so do consider this as a way of you exploring your practice and context too.
Our 3rd Annual On-line Commissioning service will be held on Zoom on Sunday 11th September at 4.00pm. I hope this is in your diary! We are delighted to involve a wide range of people once more and trust that it will be a time of, not only highlighting the amazing work you all do, but also encouraging you that you truly are valued and cared for.
Finally, as we look ahead into the next academic year, I would value your ideas for any CPD that you would find valuable. Our digging deeper series has been well received (the final one is next Tuesday, 24th May click here to register) and the National Conference next year will some additional topics. However, our commitment to support you in addressing topics and themes that are of importance to you is resolute. Do let me know any ideas you might have.
Plenty to keep us focused on looking ahead! And, of course, as we do so, we move forwards in the strength, power and love of a Father who knows us intimately and has even bigger dreams for us than we can imagine (and I have plenty of imagination!!)
God bless you