Parishes, schools and agencies

Church ministry empowered through coaching

Five stories of how the diocese's coaching program has made a difference to ministry leaders

December 15 2016Have you ever looked back on a challenging period and recognised how much it helped you to grow? This is the experience of six participants in the Anglican Diocese of Melbourne's coaching program, featured in a series of DVDs launched at Synod 2017.

The coaching program, which began in 2011, aims to help diocesan ministry leaders become more effective leaders of Christ’s mission within their local parishes and communities.

The people featured in the five DVDs speak about the difference the coaching experience has made to them – and to those they work with. Whether coach or client, they have all been encouraged to look at their patterns of leading to identify how they could grow in their different roles. All of them have taken steps to change.

Jennie Savage recently moved to Mount Eliza Anglican Parish as vicar. Jennie had worked with her coach to explore the possibility of leading a larger parish – and then to plan a clear, thoughtful transition to the new context.

Phil Meulman, vicar at St Mark’s Forest Hill, was looking for a new sense of creativity and vocation. Becoming a coach brought personal challenges as he gave up his “fixer” role to become an enabler of others’ growth.

John Carrick sought out a coach when he became priest-in-charge at St Thomas’s Burwood. John finds that the continuity and accountability of coaching are helping him build a greater confidence and clarity in his leadership.

Mavis Payne and Maria Brand-Starkey formed a coaching partnership when Maria first became priest-in-charge at St Stephen’s Warrandyte. As Maria matures in her role, they are both seeing the benefits of their work together.

Samantha White, Families and Children’s Minister at Mt Eliza, trained as a specialist coach to people leading families ministry – a ministry which is critical to the future of the church.