The Methodist Church aims to live out its theological conviction that God's love is for all. it conveys this to its governing body, the Methodist Conference, each year through reports that set a direction of travel that are both aspirational and rooted in strategic forward planning, In a report to the Methodist Conference of 2021, Justice, Dignity and Solidarity, it affirmed that, whilst its aim is to include diversity within every church setting, this aim is not always fulfilled in the experience of many church congregations and needs to be more firmly rooted in Methodism's self-understanding and practice. The report goes on to outline suggestions as to how this intention can be more firmly embedded in the life of all Methodist people with strategies for comprehensive EDI training for all existing Methodist leaders.
Thus project asks how the EDI policies of the Methodist Church, as outlined in the strategy for Justice, Dignity and Solidarity, become fully integrated into the teaching and formation of students studying for ordained ministry in ways that embed good practice from the outset, integrating academic learning and formation with the church's EDI practice?
In particular, this research intends to examine the teaching of the human life-cycle within the pastoral theology curriculum as it is now taught to an ecumenical cohort of students at the Queen's foundation and, with reference to the components of mandatory EDI training proposed by the Methodist report and in conversation with Methodist leaders and ecumenical colleagues, investigate ways of embedding the proposed strategies in the teaching and formation of ministerial students so that good practice can be integrated into both teaching and learning.
Although the starting point for this work lies within a Methodist context, the intention is to compare the discourse around EDI with the principles proposed within the Church of England and other ecumenical traditions represented at Queens, so that the emerging teaching reflects well the common understanding across churches and delivery of the course across the ecumenical spectrum.
See the Project Report: Glasson report