Self care is never a selfish act,
it is simply good stewardship of the only gift I have,
the gift I was put on earth to offer to others.
Clergy wellbeing is an important subject, it is not something that is optional, or a niche subject for certain people, or something that happens when the diary is less packed.
As a diocese we encourage our clergy to look after their physical, mental and spiritual health by putting healthy systems of work, rest and play in place. All clergy are encouraged to take regular holidays, retreats and quiet days, as well as marking a sabbath.
However, we are realistic to know that clergy wellbeing is not just a matter of good self care. At times the pressures of ministry might become too heavy to bear and any one of us might appreciate a listening ear, some counselling or advice.
If you would like a confidential conversation The Revd Canon Nicholas Gandy OGS is our officer dedicated to the pastoral care of clergy and their families. He has access to a number of counsellors with different specialties. He is also available for confidential, one off conversations, within safeguarding limitations.
St Luke's Hospital for the Clergy have developed a whole range of resources for clergy, including some to help during the Covid-19 crisis.
The Society of Mary and Martha at Sheldon offer a confidential support hub and retreat for ministers in crisis.
The Clergy Covenant
The Covenant for Clergy Care and Wellbeing was made an Act of Synod at the February 2020 Group of Sessions of the General Synod. The Covenant seeks to embed better pastoral care for clergy and to support them at every stage of their ministry. Further reading and information is available here.