The Trinity Residency Programme
Since our inception in 2013 Trinity Church Oxford has been committed to training future leaders of all kinds. Our alumni include elders in churches, pastors and church planters, full time evangelists in Britain, Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas and leaders in academia and business. Our programme of training and discipleship has included an intern scheme, but we now wish to add a Residency Programme.
We seek to identify and recruit future leaders from the UK, Europe and beyond and to invest in them through the Trinity Residency Programme. The Programme will combine ministry experience, personal mentoring and leadership training to equip emerging church leaders for a lifetime of Christ-glorifying ministry. It will focus on candidates who are planning to plant or pastor churches. They will have either completed their formal theological training or be in the process of doing so.
Aims of the Residency
We aim to develop Residents in three main areas:
· Knowledge - Teaching and personal study programme aimed rounding out a theological education. Study will therefore be focused on gospel, life, church and mission.
· Character - Mentoring and discipleship to help residents reflect on what they are learning through their study and experience, and to apply this in their own lives and let God shape them through it.
· Skills - Training and practical experience to develop core skills such as teaching the Bible, one-to-one discipleship, evangelism, as well as leadership skills in church ministry.
Qualities of the Candidate
We are looking for Christian leaders working towards full time gospel ministry who are either theologically trained, or in the process of being trained through remote learning. In particular we are looking for people with:
· A clear evangelical theology, and a commitment to word-based ministry.
· An existing level of skill and aptitude that indicates to us that they are called to gospel ministry.
· Christian humility and servant heart and a level of Christian maturity that is already exhibiting itself in leadership in their current church.
· The ability to work as part of the church staff team.
Elements of the Residency Programme
The Residency Programme is a programme running from September to June. Students may be enrolled for one or more years depending on need, opportunity and resources.
Ministry experience will comprise between a half and three quarters of a Resident’s time – depending on the amount of time that needs to be devoted to study. During the year a resident will be given opportunity to experience a variety of elements of pastoral ministry ranging from preaching to administration. Core elements will include:
1. Discipleship and pastoral care. Residents will be assigned pastoral tasks, including one-to-one discipleship, involvement in a small group, and specific tasks as needed.
2. Preaching. There will be opportunities to preach both in Trinity Church and in other local churches which we support. The number and range of opportunities will depend on the individual but will not be less than twice a term.
3. Evangelism. Residents will lead a discussion table for seekers at The Search; an evangelistic initiative of the Oxford Inter-Collegiate Christian Union (OICCU). Additionally they will be encouraged to develop gospel-sharing relationships.
4. Administration and team leadership. Residents will be given some administration and a team leadership role within the church in order to develop their skills leading volunteer teams.
5. Residents will be involved in leading worship services and prayer meetings. They will attend staff meetings, and elders’ meetings as appropriate.
1. Residents will have a monthly one-to-one mentoring meeting with the Pastor or another senior church member.
2. There will be a monthly meeting of all Residents and other emerging leaders with the Pastor to read papers and discuss books on pastoral matters.
3. Residents may additionally be mentored by others who are overseeing specific areas of their ministry experience.
Teaching and Training
1. All Residents will be given guided reading which will be discussed in group mentoring sessions. In addition if a candidate has completed their formal theological education, then further bespoke guided reading will be provided.
2. A student can spend up to 25 hours per week studying for a theological qualification. In particular, in Oxford, there are Union Learning Communities in Oxford for the PGDip (mentored by Peter Comont), and the MTh, and there is a Crosslands Seminary hub. A Resident may be enrolled on other courses by agreement with the Pastor.
Trinity Church works in partnership with a number of local, national and international organisations to recruit, train and deploy Residents.
Residents may be placed with other churches or Christian organisations for part of their time. This will negotiated with the parties concerned.
- Oxford Schools Chaplaincy ministers in local schools and can provide placements for those interested in work with young people.
- Oxford Intercollegiate Christian Union (OICCU) offers opportunities to be discussion leaders for groups of non-Christian students.
- Friends International runs regular outreach events for international students.
- Mahabba is a local network of churches seeking to reach Muslims.
- A number of local churches in different situations are willing to receive Residents for ministry experience of various kinds.
We are open to Residents being enrolled on any suitable course of training which permits them the time engage with the Programme. We have particular partner links with:
Union School of Theology and Mission, provides a PGDip and MTh based in Oxford.
Crosslands Seminary provides training in Oxford focused on church planting.
The Cornhill Training Course in London focuses primarily on helping people teach the bible.
Trinity is part of the FIEC, the South Central Gospel Partnership, Acts 29, the Redeemer City to City network. We are linked to the Greater European Mission through whom American Residents can gain a visa.
Peter Comont, Lead Mentor
Peter has more than 25 years of experience in pastoral ministry; in planting, revitalising and established church situations. He has been a teacher, trainer and mentor for Langham Ministries, Porterbrook Seminary (now Crosslands Seminary), Union School of Theology, the South Central Ministry Training Course and a book review editor for Themelios Journal.
He is currently the Pastor of Trinity Church.
Edith Vilamajo, Mentor for Women
Edith served for twenty years in student ministry throughout Europe. She recently completed her DMin and is now working to publish a book in Spanish based on her doctoral dissertation entitled “Forming to Transform: New Paradigms for the Renewal of the Teaching Ministry in the Church”. Edith is also a teacher for the Evangelical School of Theology (EET in its Spanish initials) (https://www.escuelafieide.net/) where she is also taking on the new role of student advisor with responsibility for Pastoral Care and Ministerial Development at the school.
Edith loves journeying alongside people in their walk with God and ministry, and mentors several people in ministry, usually women.
Edith is from Barcelona. She is currently based in Oxford with her husband Peter and their four-year-old son, Alex.
The Residency Programme is offered free of charge to Residents.
The cost to a Resident for accommodation and living expenses is likely to be about £16,000 for a single person, though it may be more or less depending on circumstances.. Responsibility for raising this lies ultimately with the candidate, however Trinity Church will support the candidate in fundraising, and is seeking partners to provide grants for those whose resources and connections are not sufficient to raise their own support.
If you are interested in applying, you may like to visit the church on a Sunday. We would be happy to provide hospitality and even a bed for the night. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to express preliminary interest or to find out more.