Aidan Smith, Trinity School for Ministry’s interim director, writes for the seminary’s website:
In late September 2014, I traveled to Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada in my role as Manager of Extension Partnerships to meet with the Education Committee of the Diocese of the Arctic (Anglican Church of Canada). Having recognized our mutual commitment to the call of Christ and the mission of the Church, Trinity School for Ministry and the Diocese of the Arctic have, in recent months, entered into a burgeoning partnership with the goal of training lay and ordained leaders for ministry in northern Canada. Through this partnership, it is hoped that a new generation of ministers will be formed and equipped to plant, renew, and grow the churches in the Arctic.
While many lay and ordained persons have faithfully served in northern Canada for decades, the Diocese of the Arctic has, unfortunately, suffered from a severe clergy shortage in recent years. The pain of clergy shortages is especially acute in the Arctic. In many communities across the Canadian north, the Anglican Church is not just one church among many churches—it is the only church for the entire community that it serves. So, when no minister is present, the people of that entire community suffer. There is a lack adequate pastoral care, an absence of the faithful proclamation of God’s Word, and an inability to engage in the Sacramental life of the Church. Though, thankfully, generations of faithful lay people have served these churches and these communities, keeping the lights on and the doors open, there remains the need for well-trained clergy to serve in the ministry of Word and Sacrament.
At the end of October, the Rt. Rev. Darren McCartney, Suffragan Bishop of the Arctic, traveled to Ambridge, along with members of the diocesan education committee, to further explore the possibility of an Arctic-Trinity partnership. Once fully established, the partnership would not only assist in the training of local leaders from within the Diocese, but it would also provide opportunities for members of the wider Trinity community to serve in the Arctic. It is the prayer of both Trinity School for Ministry and the Diocese of the Arctic that through this emerging partnership God will continue to raise up leaders to serve in the North and around the world.
… Trinity has already begun to see the fruit from this new relationship with the Diocese of the Arctic. Trinity’s Foundations for Christian Ministry curriculum will form the education core for clergy formation in the diocese. Also, two recent alumni, Jared and Rebecca Osborn, are in the process of moving to take clergy positions at St. Jude’s Cathedral in Iqaluit.