New department to provide even better support

    Lichfield Diocese News
    7 Jul 2019
    Pete Bate

    Diocesan teams are being restructured and aligned more closely to ensure churches get even more focused support.

    A new department shaped around the three diocesan priorities: developing discipleship, encouraging vocation and inspiring evangelism will ‘go live’ in September. It is a visionary way for a diocese to organise its central staff based on providing greater strategic coherence under the diocesan priorities.

    The Discipleship, Vocation and Evangelism (DVE) Department will work with our ‘frontlines’ – parishes, fresh expressions, chaplaincies, schools and Lichfield Cathedral – to enable them to embody our shared vision statement in their contexts:

    "As we follow Christ in the footsteps of St Chad, we pray that the two million people in our diocese encounter a church that is confident in the gospel, knows and loves its communities, and is excited to find God already at work in the world. We pray for a church that reflects the richness and variety of those communities. We pray for a church that partners with others in seeking the common good, working for justice as a people of hope."

    The department will be made up of three newly-shaped core teams:

    • Mission - will serve parishes, fresh expressions and chaplaincies with strengthened links to school outreach (through a new Mission In Schools Enabler post) and Lichfield Cathedral (through a new Archdeacon Missioner post).
    • Transforming Church & Community - incorporating Transforming Communities Together, the Diocese’s joint venture with Church Urban Fund
    • Vocations & Training - bringing the vocations, training and ministry development teams together to offer a clear pathway to those exploring their vocation and ongoing support to clergy and other leaders.

    The teams will be based under one roof at Three Spires House in Lichfield, working closely with the Board of Education Team and the diocese’s Central Administration Support Teams who are a short distance away at St Mary’s House.

    As part of strengthening the service parishes already receive from the diocese, each deanery will also have a named member of central staff as a link point for diocesan support and assistance.

    Lindsey Hall, who will head up the new DVE Department, said: “This is a really exciting development which will focus the way we support a changing church in a changing world. The new DVE Department will seek to be creative, collaborative, resilient and supportive - in response to what people and groups across the diocese have told us they need.

    “The ground work for the realignment has been laid in recent months with the move to Three Spires House alongside our Board of Education team. It is great that links with Education and the Cathedral will be deepened through the new shared posts.”

    Diocesan CEO Julie Jones said: “These changes, which are cost neutral, are about shaping the way we do things better to provide the best possible support to the 420 parishes, over 200 schools, multiple fresh expressions, chaplaincies and the cathedral in our large and diverse diocese.

    “We want to work in a joined-up way that means churches feel well supported and connected to the diocese and each other. This is an innovative way of doing things which will develop over the coming months as we identify further opportunities for collaboration and support.”