Go back in time well over twenty years and the County Ecumenical Officer (CEO) spent a lot of time taking minutes and servicing committees. Fifteen years ago, reflecting a huge change in emphasis and practice, the pro forma job description and person spec offered by CTE focused far more on mission and stressed enabling and networking. Fast forward to today and County Ecumenical Officers themselves have set out a vision statement for their post.
The content of that vision was generated at a national meeting of CEOs and translated into the vision statement by Robert Mountford, working with the other CEOs in the West Midlands.
While we retain the generic term ‘County Ecumenical Officer’ to describe someone appointed ecumenically to a county or Intermediate Body (IB) area, in practice many have different titles, reflecting the different emphases considered important when they were appointed. The new kid on the block, CEOs themselves suggest, is the Ecumenical Development Enabler who:
- Carries, nurtures and transmits the vision of Christian unity
- Works with diverse reality, understanding the complexity of the Church in the IB
- Engages beyond the Intermediate Body and embraces new thinking in work for mission and unity
- Supports IB Church Leaders
- Develops robust lasting relationships which don’t depend on the EDE
- Enables networking and bridge-building
- Is an effective and imaginative communications hub, sharing good news stories of mission and unity
- Enables co-operative actions for mission and unity.
CTE has still to try to translate this vision statement into employment documentation but you can download the vision statement below.