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One college down, two to go

The wife and I began our tour of theological colleges yesterday as we try to make a decision about where I want to train and where we want to live for the next couple of days. We visited St John’s College in Nottingham yesterday and had a really good time with them there.

I was pleasantly surprised to see that the staff at St John’s had really thought about our arrival and even done some background work and thinking for us on potential accomodation to rent. It may be that they all do that but the extra care it showed was really encouraging to me. We had a good tour around, had some good interviews with the Principal and Dean, saw a house and attended a service.

If I was to advise anyone in a similar position, I’d recommend that you write down a list of things you want to think about and ask before you go. We kept forgetting things and then having to backtrack and ask later. I’d also advise you to see the Financial Adviser for your diocese first. We haven’t and there were so many questions that arose because we don’t know how that works yet that it kind of got in the way.

Lastly, although you can leave before the evening worship – don’t. We learnt a lot just by being with them for worship and, as my vicar said to me, ask yourself the question whether you could worship here. It’s important because these guys will pretty much be your church for the next couple of years.

All SPCK shops to close

Working, as I do, in the book trade, I got a heads-up this morning of fairly monumental proportions for the church in the United Kingdom. One of the bookshop managers for SPCK cancelled their usual appointment with one of my colleagues earlier today since she has been told that SPCK will be closing all its shops over the next few months due to STL pulling out of the SPCK/STL deal.

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It’s official

The Bishop’s letter arrived promptly this morning so it is official. I am going to be a priest in the Church of England! Needless to say, the wife instantly started texting all our family and friends who’ve been waiting on the news. I’m blogging and will shortly send emails, including an apology to all those who we didn’t tell because of the advice that the CofE gives.

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I got in

They must be mad. I’m a little in shock at the moment. Pleased, excited but in shock. This afternoon while the wife was at her dad’s, I got a call from my DDO confirming that they had received my report from the Bishop’s Advisory Panel and I had been recommended for “training for the Ordained Ministry (Priest) with the expectation that [I] be deployed nationally”. Sounds impressive.

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