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Sunday, 14 October 2012

Postulants from Grand Canary to Moscow explore vocation to the sacred ministry

Fr William Gulliford gives guidance to the postulants for Holy Orders
The Diocesan Vocations Seminar was held in St Columba's House in Woking from 9 - 11 October. This is the annual event where postulants for Holy Orders gather for some intense days of discernment led by the Director of Ordinands, the Revd William Gulliford. Fr William is assisted by the bishops, the Director of Training, the Revd Canon Ulla Monberg, and some assistant Directors of Ordinands. This year those assistant Directors of Ordinands were the Revd Canon Hugh Broad from Costa C├ílida, Spain, and the Revd Canon Barbara Moss from Gothenburg, Sweden. This year's postulants were men and women from Spain (mainland and Canaries), Russia, France and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

The days at the Seminar are full, with interviews for each postulant which focus on each of the nine criteria for selection for Holy Orders in the Church of England. There are also group exercises and input from former ordinands and theological educators about the process and journey towards ordination. All this is under-girded with the daily office and eucharist.

At the end of the Vocations Seminar the Diocesan Ministry Team makes recommendations about the next stage for each postulant, which may include being sent on to a national Bishops' Advisory Panel, which is where the final recommendation in terms of entering training for ordained ministry is made.

As Fr Hugh Broad is retiring at Easter this was likely the last Vocations Seminar he will be helping with. We will miss his years of experience in ministry and his wise and insightful skills of discernment and direction. He is seen below chatting to one of our postulants from Madrid.

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