Continuing Ministerial Development
No minister can learn at college all they need to learn. And no minister can operate in isolation from the support, friendship and advice of others in ministry. A healthy approach to ministry involves a commitment to both ongoing learning and accountability. This benefits the minister themselves, their families and their churches or mission settings. Churches play their part by giving ministers time and financial support for their development.
Through Autumn 2020, the Ministries Team are introducing a framework for Continuing Ministerial Development (CMD). Every accredited or recognised Baptist minister is strongly encouraged to engage with the CMD scheme. Those who are pastors in our Baptist churches but who do not have formal accreditation for their role are also welcome to engage with it. Our hope is that accountable ongoing development becomes an unquestioned element in our ministerial culture – simply part of what all ministers and pastors do.
The purpose of CMD is to sustain the well-being and capability of ministers.
The outworking of CMD is the practice of five habits:
Learning through reading, training, conferences, blogs, seminars, theology days and so on.
Attentiveness to their own relationship with God and to their physical, emotional and relational well-being.
Accountability through mentoring, pastoral supervision, spiritual direction, coaching, soul friends, or learning communities.
Connection to fellow Baptist ministers by meeting together, and to the Baptist family by serving locally, regionally or nationally.
Review, by asking others to reflect on their ministry strengths and weaknesses at least every three years.
Those who participate in CMD meet with a peer once a year for a 'CMD audit'. Together they will record their development over the previous twelve months and plan their development over the coming twelve.
You can find out much more in the CMD handbook. All ministers are asked to read this handbook and start to think over the coming months about how they might initiate or refine their practice of the five CMD habits, ready for their first CMD audit in November 2021. There is nothing to stop ministers holding a CMD audit sooner than this, or even immediately, if they wish.
Please note that the recommended terms of appointment already allow ministers a week’s study leave each year as well as a sabbatical of up to three months every seven years. These are both in addition to their annual leave entitlement. We hope that churches will readily grant time and financial assistance to ministers for these and other elements of CMD. There is a summary of the CMD framework available that may prove useful for church leadership teams who want to understand what the broad requirements are.
Two recorded webinars with Tim Fergusson from the Ministries Team, introducing CMD, are available online, one with BSL interpretation. Plus we will be hosting a monthly CMD webinar concerning a topic to do with ministerial development. Details of all forthcoming webinars and recordings of all those already broadcast can be found here.
Click here to contact the Ministries Team about CMD.