It’s been a while since we last posted here. Partly due to all the things going on with the project. Here are some of the highlights.
1) We have been greatly encouraged by the response to the Chaplaincy Development Project over the past year. It seems to have really caught people’s imaginations! We believe with all our heart about the potential to see ‘Chaplaincy Everywhere’ and think that it can change the church and the nations.
2) We have been encouraged to get rid of the word ‘pilot’ and move into full scale project mode! You never know, ‘project’ may even be replaced by ‘programme’, though that is probably a few years down the road.
3) We are currently working with three districts to work with for the next two years. We need to find a fourth, but that will come soon. The three we are working with have so much potential, it really is an exciting time. All this is currently in process and all the paperwork etc. should be submitted by the end of March. We will know in May whether it is all systems go or time to conclude. So pray for us all in this process that God’s will is done, not just ours!
4) Meanwhile we are forming a Chaplaincy Everywhere exhibition which will tell the stories of chaplains from around the country. We are mega excited about the potential for sharing inspiring stories from chaplaincy with the church. We promise to share them here when the exhibition is ready to show to the world!
5) We are also rolling out some exciting research around the use of stories to evaluate the work we are doing. The hope is that the stories told will help to shape and form the national project as well as local chaplaincy projects we are working on.
6) If that were not enough, we are still all systems go with our local projects from this pilot year, and hope that before long we will have some exciting stories to tell from this first year… well actually 11 months and counting. We have learnt some valuable lessons over the past 11 months and will be taking them into the next stage. Thank you Southampton and Lancashire!!!
7) And, I (Jonathan) am writing a Chaplaincy Everywhere Lent Course. Yes, I am writing the sessions 3 weeks before they happen… so pray that I get all that done. We are piloting the course in a couple of places and hope to publish it for free to the whole wide world in September! It will take a small group through a process where by the end of it they are actually hatching plans for chaplaincy in their local community! Truly exciting to give the best of what we are learning away to the church for free… in the spirit of Open Source Chaplaincy!
Of course there is much more bubbling behind the scenes, exciting plans around future publicity and resources and … and… but these are some of the highlights.
Please pray for God’s grace, energy, focus, determination and all round glory to rest upon this work. It feels like the right thing at the right time and we hope that it continues to spread.
Thanks for your ongoing interest and encouragement. It is good to know that a community is growing that believes that chaplaincy is a radical response to God’s mission in the world.