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The first ever “in-house” Interim Ministry Training session took place in the Trendell Lounge, the meeting space shared by the Synod of the Diocese of New Westminster and St. John’s, Shaughnessy on Thursday, November 16, 2017.

Bishop Melissa Skelton and the diocesan Missioner for Congregational Development, Tasha Carrothers welcomed 14 priests from around the diocese. The diverse and experienced group that attended the all-day session included: priests currently serving as interim priests-in-charge, vicars, rectors, priest associates, regional deans and a priest newly retired from full-time ministry. This was a participatory training session with all in attendance sharing their skills and knowledge to delve deeply into the “seven tasks of the interim.” Bishop Skelton’s goal was to equip the 14 participants with the skills needed to engage these tasks, as follows:

  1. Increase parishioners’ sense of predictability: a) Goal setting- b) Vision for interim: Biblical story or story from the tradition or history of the parish - c) Shared expectations between interim and wardens/PC 
  2. Build relationships between interim and parish and among parishioners with each other
  3. Bringing practices into alignment—where important and essential—when it comes to Diocesan policy and practice (also called “norming”)
  4. Assist the parish in getting in touch with its “data” and story
  5. Activate participation
  6. Increase transparency
  7. Maintain or build the quality of the total Sunday morning experience

Bishop Skelton, Tasha and the participants enjoyed the experience and are looking forward to implementing these “tasks” and seeing positive results in faith communities where interim ministry is currently part of the parish’s reality.


  • The Reverend Grant Rodgers, Vicar, Christ the Redeemer, Director for Anglican Formation, VST; the Reverend Allen Doerksen, Vicar, St. Matthew, Priest-in-Charge, St. Thomas, Chilliwack; and standing at the easel, the Reverend Karen Urquhart, Interim Priest-in-Charge, St. Christopher’s.
  • The Reverend Stephanie Shepard, Interim Priest-in-Charge, St. John’s, Port Moody, Regional Dean of Tri-Cities/Burnaby; The Reverend Dr. April Stanley, Interim Priest-in-Charge, St. Stephen’s, Burnaby; The Reverend James Duckett, Interim Priest-in-Charge, St. Paul’s: the Reverend Ruth Monette, Interim Priest-in-Charge, St. Timothy; the Reverend Sharon Salomons, Assistant Interim Priest-in-Charge, St. Catherine, Capilano, Director for Diaconal Formation,  diocese of New Westminster.

Photos: John Sovereign