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What do Chaplains look like?

"I was a stranger and you welcomed me..."Matthew 25: 35

Close your eyes and think what does the Chaplaincy ethnicity mix look like where you work or live? It possibly looks like you — unless you are from a BME background.

Sitting on the Comnexional Equalities and Diversity Commission for the last 3 years I have been raising the issue about the lack of BME representation in the world & ministry and especially so in Chaplaincy. Recent publications speak of a 'Kaleidoscope of Chaplaincy' but real the picture doesn't look like a kaleidoscope. Being in the Birmingham District I have aimed to address some of the inequality.

Recently at the Birmingham Circuit launch of their Holy Habits programme I spoke with the Zimbabwean Fellowship with an aim of speaking at one of their Fellowship gatherings and to introduce their fellowship to the ministry of Chaplaincy.

Revd Cleopas Sibanda will be the Fellowships new Chaplain and it is hoped that the members of the Zimbabwean Fellowship will come to see that they too could be Chaplains in all sorts of places so we could really be on the road to 'an inclusive church'. Visits have also been made to the Methodist Chinese Church in Northfield with a view to further Chaplaincy exploration

Revd David Butterworth MA
Mission in the Economy Officer, Chaplaincy Everywhere
Birmingham District

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