Part-time training has its challenges, not least of which are evening classes after a day's work, and making time for essays and projects during the week. But it's these pressures that bond us as a group and I have formed so many lifelong friendships.

Study

Most students study for a Diploma in Theology, Ministry and Mission accredited by Durham University Common Awards over 3 years. For students with some previous theological study, programmes can be tailored to individual needs and training over 2 years is possible.

Part-time training requires an average of 12 - 15 hours a week which includes teaching sessions, time for reading, and completing assignments. The teaching component takes place on one evening a week during three 10-week terms, six residential weekends per year, and one residential week in the summer or around Easter in the final year. These teaching components are supported by independent learning, reflection and practice in home parishes. Training in this way is both stimulating and stretching which is why we provide personal support and guidance for each student, either from core staff or a local tutor.

The study sessions cover a wide range of topics in theology and biblical study but the emphasis is always on the practical application of theology to ministry. This means that a significant part of the course involves spiritual formation and competence skills. Almost all students also undertake two placements which can be arrange with considerable flexibility.

Prayer

Prayer is at the heart of everything we do. We meet together for worship on study evenings, we pray in small groups and at services in Chapel during residential weekends, and the summer school gives us the opportunity to worship together in a sustained way over the course of the week.