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Title: The practice of ordained ministry within the contemporary Church of Scotland : problems of identity, role, and function
Author: Macaskill, Donald
ISNI:       0000 0001 3614 8232
Awarding Body: University of Glasgow
Current Institution: University of Glasgow
Date of Award: 1998
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This work arises from a premise that the practice of ordained ministry within the Church of Scotland is in a state of 'crisis' and it suggests that this analysis is appropriate. The nature of this crisis is discussed together with institutional reactions thereto. Following a presentation of the concepts of role, identity and the self, consideration is given to the role of the parish minister in Scotland up to the contemporary period. Consideration is given to the changing role of the minister in contemporary Scotland, the issue of professionalisation and the affects of role conflict and uncertainty on the conditions of stress and burnout in ministry. Thereafter analysis of the main aspects of ministerial practice is achieved through means of a postal questionnaire and structured interview technique. Vocational issues of initial vocation, training, priority, worship and theology are examined and discussed, followed by more relational aspects of practice, including, pastoral care, family and spouse relationships, women in ministry, congregation and collegial relationship and most particularly the minister's self- understanding and self care. In each of these areas it is suggested that the contemporary practice of ministry is evidencing dis-ease and distress and that such a practice vitiates a resolution of the perceived 'crisis' of identity and role. Nevertheless it remains clear that for the majority of parish ministers the functions of worship leadership, particularly preaching and pastoral care remain dominant within their self-conception of their role and identity. A relational, social trinitarian theology of ministry is advanced together with the model of minister as human friend. Both emphasise and concentrate on the relational dynamics of ministry. It is argued that there needs to be an examination of the relationship between function and being in ministry, together with a re-conceptualisation of the nature of ordination, the role of the sacraments in ordained ministry and the relationship between the ordained and the whole people of God. Recommendations are offered for both institutional and theological change to encourage the development of a ministerial practice and theology which concentrates and affirms the relational dimension of parish ministry.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Philosophy