This letter has been presented at Diocesan Leadership Team, Management Committee and in Regional Archdeacon’s meetings.
As we are now four years since my enthronement as bishop, it is time to take stock of where we have come as Diocesan family and where to from here. Until this point, the south of the Diocese has arguably received most of my energy. There is no doubt that we have seen a significant change in momentum and are seeing the fruit of a positive shift in culture.
It feels like the right time to explore the possibility of Jenny and myself moving, possibly to Whanganui, to be present to support and strengthen the north of the Diocese.
Therefore I would like to call an Assistant Bishop who will be based in the south of the Diocese, to continue to offer leadership and build momentum. This person would lead on to the next level and deepen our culture change. There is a strong team in place who provide great alignment and cultural direction and would support the new role holder to continue to drive change.
In my opinion, the ideal position holder might possess a skillset which is aligned to the Diocese’s strategic vision, however he/she might also possess abilities which complement, rather than replicate, my own leadership. The ideas outlined below are not inclusive and are just thoughts at this stage.
AREAS OF ALIGNMENT
The position holder must be aligned in areas of:
- Leadership – will be a skilled, visionary leader;
- In setting and living in active practice the Diocese’s culture and direction – holding closely to the Diocesan values of lost, last and least; family; and discipleship;
- Having the ability to form and develop teams.
The position holder might hold the following skills, which provide a complement to current leadership:
- Will be aligned more closely to the ‘centre’ or mainstream;
- Will have proven networking ability in secular corridors of power – government, corporate, academic;
- Will be able to engage at the Provincial level;
- Will have strong written skills;
- Will be a strong pastor/teacher.
We are currently budgeting for a half-time role. The role holder would be fully active as an Assistant Bishop, but it is anticipated that the remainder of their role would already be subsumed within a current ministry position. Thus until we know who the potential role holder will be, we are budgeting for a half-time position.
This proposal will be discussed at pre-Synod regional meetings and at Synod itself in 2016. I encourage people to discuss this idea widely. At Synod we will make a decision on whether or not to move forward with this. If Synod decides to proceed, an Electoral Synod will be called in the first half of 2017.
These ideas are purely personal thoughts at this stage and are very much open for discussion.