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Interim and Transition Ministry: a beginner’s guide

A group of experienced ministers involved in interim and transition ministry offer their collective guide to this area of vocation.

MUCH has changed in Scotland over the past few decades. The Christian faith and values which once shaped life in Scotland have encountered huge challenges, and rhythms of life and worship which were once the ‘warp and weft’ of the nation’s spiritual life are no longer a ‘given’. The Church faces a fresh missionary calling to reach the generations who no longer follow without question the faith or the Church allegiance of their forebears.

But beyond the landscape of national change, the Church also faces the internal task of helping congregations to navigate a course through seasons of crisis or difficulty which can arise in any local congregation.

For over 20 years now, a small but extremely dedicated team of interim ministers has been deployed to congregations throughout Scotland on a short-term basis to help congregations face and process this latter form of change. And more recently, within the past six years, a new and additional expression of ministry has come into being with a team of transition ministers whose role, though similar in some ways, is different and quite distinct, seeking to help congregations transition over a longer period to a new and different expression of life, ministry and mission which will be more relevant for the future of the Church in the emerging landscape of Scotland.

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