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It was a privilege to attend the October Parakaleo basic training workshop, on 16-18 October 2020, with 28 ministry wives from Canberra and Goulburn and surrounds. Five of the women registered were from rural/regional Australia.

Parakaleo is a Christian organisation that runs workshops for ministry wives. It empowers, supports and values women by acknowledging the joys and normalising the challenges that they can experience in ministry. Through a Gospel lens, Parakaleo teaches ministry wives practical skills for ministry.

Wendy Mugridge

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the workshop was online. This event provided the opportunity for us wives to re-focus our view of the Gospel, ministry and ourselves, reminding us that our hope and identity is in Jesus.

Thank you to Wendy Mugridge and Jane Bray, for their generosity with their precious time, their integrity, their authentic sharing of their experiences and facilitating the informative weekend for us. Bless you. Also a huge thanks to our beautiful Diocese, Bishop Mark Short, Bev Forbes, Mothers’ Union, CWA-Gungahlin, Canberra Ministry Wives Network and several individuals, for generously supporting the weekend so that all wives could attend.

Jane Bray

Bishop Mark and I continue to pray for all spouses, that they will flourish in their ministries around the Diocese. Parakaleo is one of the second year activities in our five-year plan to encourage spouses (for example, spouses of the clergy, school principals, chaplains, AIDF, Anglicare leaders, St Mark’s staff etc) in their ministries. Other events this year were a joint spouses’ meal and a male spouses Zoom event. Next year, the third year, we will be continuing with joint informal dinners/get-togethers.

We also will be considering a gospel response to problem-solving in ministry. We are currently finalising the details for a weekend training event on resolving conflict well. The facilitators for this event are Anglicare Chaplain and social worker Janice Ackland and her husband, James Ackland, both of whom are PeaceWise trained, and it is for all ministry spouses. If you would like to know more about the 2021 event, partner with the event or have suggestions about the spouses’ activities, please email us at the Diocese office via the Diocesan contact page https://anglicancg.org. au/contact-us.

Bless you. Please join us in praying for and encouraging the spouses around us. We thank God for all ministry spouses – you are our blessing.

PS: Dear spouses and ministry units, Bev Forbes is currently updating the contact email list for all ministry spouses (eg, spouses of chaplains, school principals, Anglicare senior executive, clergy spouses, AIDF, St Mark’s staff, ACC&C – staff) so they can receive emails about the events. Could you, please, email Bev at bev.forbes@ anglicancg.org.au with a direct email contact.

Below is one of the slides shared at the start of the Parakaleo weekend.

by Monica Short