Category: Conferences

National Deaneries Conference 2023 – Deanery Briefing LIVE

Deaneries ; "simpler, humbler, bolder"
What part should Deaneries play?

The Deanery's role in:
Re-Imagining .....   Re-Focusing .....   Re-Connecting ..... Mission and Ministry

The direction is set:  we are aspiring to be Simpler …. Humbler …. and Bolder!

  • A simpler Church, both in governance and structure and in the way we live and share the gospel
  • A humbler Church, recognising our failings and working with others to serve the common good
  • A bolder Church energised and enthused by the good news of what God has done in Jesus Christ and sharing that with everyone.

How can the deaneries respond to the national agenda?

Deanery Briefing LIVE! - the first National Deaneries conference for over four years -

will bring together leaders and experts to tackle head on and delve in deeper with “how to” breakout sessions and workshops addressing key issues to respond to the challenge of the national agenda.

Rev Rob Merchant: Mental Health and Faithfulness in an Age of Anxiety

Rob MerchantCovid-19 has touched each of us in one way or another and coping with the restrictions imposed to combat the pandemic has brought the issue of mental well being for both clergy and laity into sharp focus.

During this Briefing Rob draws upon his own experiences of living with a long-term mental health condition as a result of developmental trauma, to explore how we can enable safe conversations about mental well-being. The session involves reflection, top-tips, honesty, story, and most importantly, hope.

Revd Rob Merchant is Tutor and Director of St Mellitus College, Chelmsford; his additional responsibilities in the life of St Mellitus College include Dispersed Learning, contributing to ministerial formation and teaching, and Safeguarding.

Upon leaving school Rob worked as a care worker supporting people with learning disabilities. Since ordination he has served in a number of different ministerial contexts from multi-parish rural to single parish urban as an incumbent and as an associate priest, he has also worked in academic research and management.

Rob’s passion is to see people flourish in the ministry to which they are called, in whatever walk of life. He is married to Tamsin, who is Vicar of St Mary’s Hornsey Rise where Rob serves as Associate Vicar.

Mental Health and Faithfulness Presentation

Rob Merchant’s book: “Broken by fear anchored in hope” available here: (can also be purchased on Amazon)

John Spence

John SpenceJohn Spence is Finance Chair of the Archbishops’ Council and well known for his co-ordinating role on the Renewal and Reform agenda. He has previously been Chair of Chelmsford Diocesan Board of Finance and a Church Commissioner.

In business, John spent 32 years with Lloyds Banking Group culminating in six managing director roles. Since leaving in 2005, he has held many appointments across government, charity and business.

He is a cabinet member on Essex County Council, Finance Chair BITC, a treasurer for the QE2 Diamond Jubilee Trust and other things as well! He has successively been awarded the MBE, OBE and CBE, for services to community, charity and business respectively.

John is married with three children and five grandchildren.

Jimmy Dale

Jimmy is the National Youth Evangelism Officer for the Church of England.

He responsible for promoting and resourcing youth evangelism across the country.

Jimmy is based in London and is married to Sarah. As well as being passionate about youth ministry and evangelism, he is a keen spurs fan, a running enthusiast, and a passionate advocate of Apple products

Dr Bev Botting

Dr Bev Botting
Dr Bev Botting

Dr Bev Botting was appointed Head of Research and Statistics for the Archbishops’ Council on 13 February 2012. She joined the Church of England’s research team from the National Centre for Social Research (NatCen), where she had been Survey Outreach Officer for two and a half years, heading a survey research training programme for postgraduates and early career researchers.

Prior to that, Dr Botting was for a long time a statistician at the Office for National Statistics, variously majoring on child health studies, advising on the use of data for medical research, and leading on financial national social surveys.

Bev is a highly experienced and enthusiastic senior research manager and statistician with extensive project and staff management skills. She provides expert advice on record linkage and use of large national databases and is a published author and editor with experience of TV and radio interviews.

Citizens UK

Citizens UK organises communities to act together for power, social justice and the common good.

Community organising is at the heart of Citizens UK. Their diverse member organisations include schools, churches, mosques, synagogues, parents’ groups, health practice, charities and trade unions. They help these members to develop leaders, so they can participate in public life and hold politicians and other decision-makers to account on the issues that matter to them.

Community organising is democracy in action: winning victories that change lives and transform communities.

Community Organising is based on the principle that when people work together, they have the power to change their neighbourhoods, cities, and ultimately the country for the better. Citizens UK work with people who want to transform the world, from what it is to what they believe it should be. To do this they listen to their members, asking them about their concerns and developing strategies to improve their communities. Citizen UK ensure that civil society is at the negotiating table alongside the market and state, so that our communities are included in the decisions that affect them.

The Citizen UK vision is for a healthy democracy with civil society at its heart.

more ….

Jonathan Cox

Jonathan Cox is Deputy Director Citizen UK and Lead Organiser for Citizens Cymru Wales
Jonathan Cox

Jonathan began his organising career as Coordinator for the Independent Asylum Commission, which culminated in a nationwide campaign to end the detention of children for immigration purposes.

Alongside UK-wide work on migration, he has built alliances in Wandsworth and most recently in Wales, where he now lives with his wife and two children.

Jonathan holds a BA in History and Politics from the University of Durham and an MA in Community Organising from Queen Mary, University of London, where he co-led a Postgraduate Certificate in Community Organising course. He is an Associate Lecturer at Newman University, Birmingham, who now accredit Citizens UK’s training.

Jonathan previously worked in Westminster as a Researcher to an MP and Government Minister, and then as Parliamentary Officer for a leading refugee charity.

More on Citizens UK

Deaneries in Action – Getting things done


The 2020 National Deaneries Conference – Deaneries in Action – is at the Hayes Conference Center, Swanwick from 9th – 11 October.

We’ve done with the talking …. Now is the time for action and getting things done!

With a focus on Social Justice and engaging with youth and young people the 2020 National Deaneries conference will provide practical advice and examples to enable Deaneries to step up to the challenge.

Deaneries are ideally placed with a key role respond to the call to action and spearhead, energise and resource Social Action and Youth Evangelism.

Are you up for the challenge?

Reserve your place at the 2020 National Deaneries Conference and gear up for action.

more …