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Parish of the Woodford Valley with Archers Gate and Kings Gate

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Ministry and Pastoral Care

Vicar: The Reverend Dr Michael Perry

Associate priest and assistant rural dean: The Reverend Patricia Powell

Licenced Lay Ministers: Lt Col Hugh Keatinge & Mrs Sylvia Parrett

Lay Pastoral Assistants: Gp Capt Micheal Lee, Mrs Celia Edwards, Mrs Suzanne Waters

Lay Worship Leaders: Mrs Suzanne Waters, Mrs Donna Young

What is Lay Ministry?

All parishes are made up of clergy, ordained by the bishop to carry out their work in the church and parish, and lay people (the laity) consisting of everyone else. Some lay people are particularly involved in church ministry

Licensed Lay Ministers (LLMs)

Lay Ministers are licensed by the bishop to work alongside ordained colleagues in the parishes where they serve. In some cases their ministry is rooted in the community or in the workplace rather than in the life of the local church.

Readers are a nationally trained and authorised ministry in the Church of England. These ‘lay theologians’ preach the gospel, teach and enable others to grow as disciples of Christ. They may lead and participate in worship, conduct funerals and offer pastoral care. In the Diocese of Salisbury Lay Readers are called 'Licensed Lay Ministers'.

Some Lay Ministers have a ministry with a different focus to that of the traditional ‘Reader’. Instead of a focus on preaching, teaching and enabling learning, they proclaim the gospel primarily through pastoral care.

Lay Ministers are often seen as a ‘bridge’ between the church and the world. They may be able to minister in contexts where clergy are not so readily accepted. Lay Ministers are constantly discovering new and flexible ways in which to serve.

Lay Pastoral Assistants (LPAs)

Lay Pastoral Assistants assist with the pastoral ministry of the parishes where they live. They are chosen by the vicar and PCC (Parochial Church Council), ministering under the direction of the vicar. They may work with children and young people, the sick, the recently bereaved and the elderly and housebound. They may take communion to those unable to come to church. Many benefices have teams of LPAs, some of whom specialise in a particular area.

Lay Worship Leaders (LWLs)

Lay Worship Leaders assist with planning and leading worship in the parishes where they live. Like LPAs, they are chosen by the vicar and PCC and minister under the direction of the vicar. They may be part of a worship committee or worship planning group, preparing acts of worship, leading morning and evening prayer, all age worship and other non sacramental acts of worship, although they do not preach.