In case you haven’t noticed, clergy come in all shapes and sizes! And that is as it should be:
And God has appointed in the church first apostles, second prophets, third teachers; then deeds of power, then gifts of healing, forms of assistance, forms of leadership, various kinds of tongues.
1 Corinthians 12:28 – Whole Chapter
God calls all sorts of people to be clergy – and why not? No two clergy roles are exactly the same, why should we expect the same kind of people to be capable of so many different roles?
The nature of the role has changed too over the years; I think it is fair to say that Britain can no longer be considered a “Christian Country”; yes, there is a christian heritage which has set the ethos of the country, but this is changing. While there used to be an assumption that everyone in the parish was christian, for example anyone who lives in the parish can be married in the parish church* and buried in the churchyard, this is no longer the case. The role has also changed as society has changed, since 2000 the following are legal requirements that parishes have to comply with, some with onerous administration requirements eg: CRB, DBS, GDPR, Data Protection, Charity Law, Safeguarding and Inclusion, Risk Assessments. Some parishes are lucky and have lay people who can manage these, while in others the clergy have to get more involved.
So, what kind of people do you want to be clergy?
* – terms and conditions apply, unfortunately