Reader Training in the Diocese of Chester

Exploring Reader Ministry

If you feel that you may be called to Reader ministry it is helpful to explore it thoroughly. Begin by doing the following:

  • Pray that God will help you to know whether you are being called to this ministry
  • Consider the demands on your life and the training involved
  • Talk with your incumbent to explore your calling further
  • Discuss your ideas and feelings with your family, friends, other members of your church fellowship and if possible with a Reader.

Reader Training

Reader training is designed to equip Readers for their future ministry in an ever-changing world. It is demanding both of energy and time. Therefore, if you feel called to be a Reader, you should identify what aspects of Reader ministry attract you and confirm with your incumbent and others that you are gifted in these areas.

Reader training has two essential elements – formation and information. You will not simply learn about things, you will be shaped by your learning.

Since the beginning of the global pandemic, Reader training has taken place online. We use a model of preparatory learning and in class discussion and application. Most modules are worth 20 credits (awarded by the University of Chester). These require 250 hours of study. Reader training, then, is not something you can fit in to what you already do. You will need to make time for it. Normally, this will mean relinquishing any roles you currently hold in your parish.

What work will I have to do?

Before you begin Reader training you must complete Foundations for Ministry, and have submitted assignments to the University. In Reader specific training, you will usually be available during term time on a Wednesday evening, and some weekends. Details of the programme change regularly in order to pace with the national church, and current circumstances. Assignments are tailored to be realistic and to fit within the guidelines of Reader ministry. It is likely that you will be asked to make podcasts or vlogs and write blog posts, as well as engage in more traditional written work.

For more information on Foundations for Ministry click here

If you would like to chat to someone informally about vocation please complete the Vocational Conversation - Initial Enquiry Form and then send it to who will then arrange the initial contact with a Vocations Adviser.

You will need the support and agreement of your incumbent and your PCC to proceed with Reader training. If you have any questions about Reader training contact:

Revd Canon Liz Shercliff, Director of Studies for Readers
tel: 07515 633856 Email:  or

Revd Simon Chesters, Director of Ministry

tel: 07580 006006 Email:

Incumbents putting forward candidates for Reader training selection should contact for an application pack.  The closing date for applications is 20 June

Reader Discernment Framework

Click here to download the document

Reader Handbook

Reader Handbook Revised December 2021 (See this for information on becoming a Reader, post-licensing support, the transfer process, becoming Emeritus and much more.)





Page last updated: Wednesday 5th October 2022 7:30 AM
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