Sabbaticals are a required part of a presbyter's or deacon's performance of his or her duties. They can be extremely beneficial both for the individual minister and for the health of the wider Church and can significantly enhance the ministry of the whole people of God.
For Methodist presbyters and deacons, a sabbatical is a period of release from ordinary ministerial duties, in addition to normal holidays, for the purpose of pursuing an approved programme of study, research, work or experience. It is intended as a time for re-equipping, refreshment and renewal.
All presbyters and deacons in Full Connexion and stationed in an appointment within the control of the Church are expected to take a regular sabbatical. The years in which sabbaticals may be taken are normally every seventh year of travel as a minister.
Sabbaticals are part of the continuing development of ministers and as such need to be carefully planned, well in advance. Each minister must create a Support Group and choose a Convenor, who will work alongside the Advisory Group. The Circuit Meeting needs to agree to the dates and arrangements to cover the minister whilst they are away from the Circuit.
In the Northampton District, Sabbaticals are guided and monitored by the District Sabbaticals Advisory Group, led by Sue Bayliss. This group is responsible for approving the plans a minister makes for the time away from Circuit and also for accepting a report once the sabbatical is complete
Here on this page are some resources to help ministers, districts and circuits as they prepare for ministerial sabbaticals.
Finally, please contact Sue Bayliss if you have any queries.