Anglican Schools Australia (ASA) values the work of chaplains in our schools. As a network it seeks to provide encouragement, support and professional development for chaplains.
In particular, the Network undertakes to develop resources for chaplains to use and share with one another and with the students and staff in their care.
Each year at the ASA conference, chaplains, principals, senior academic and pastoral staff, and classroom teachers gather together alongside senior clergy and school governors in a spirit of collegiality and celebration, as new ideas are explored and professional relationships strengthened.
Many chaplains work alone or in small teams, so these conferences enable them to showcase and pool their resources, while accumulating new ones.
One ASA initiative was the formation of the Chaplains’ Consultative Committee in October 2016. Representatives from each state and the ACT Chaplains’ Network meet to learn what each state is doing to support and encourage the work of chaplains.
ASA is keen to further develop this ‘sharing of ideas and resources’ with chaplains around the nation. We especially welcome chaplains new to the network and hope you will connect with other chaplains and benefit from their experience through the links we establish. Most importantly, we encourage you to make use of this website, together with the Blog – aplaceformission.org and our closed Facebook Page dedicated for Chaplains working in Australian Anglican schools (links in the tabs below)
If you have resources or ideas, please share them.
If you have a request or question, please raise it.
Finally, if you have a moment, pray for us and our students that together we might grow in the knowledge and love of Jesus Christ our Lord.
In 2015 the Management Committee finalised details for an agreement between ASA and the Centre for Chaplaincy Studies at the University of Cardiff in Wales (in partnership with the Anglican Diocese of Hong Kong), for Australian school chaplains to study a three-year Master of Theology in Chaplaincy Studies.
For the first two years, chaplains will undertake four 4-day ‘intensives’ per year – one each in Cardiff (Wales) and Perth (Australia), and two in Hong Kong. The third year involves writing a dissertation. They will be studying alongside chaplains from the UK, Asia, and beyond.
Our first Australian chaplain enrolled in the course in September 2015 and graduated in 2019. The Reverend Jean-Pierre Schroeder, who at that time was a Chaplain at St Mark’s Anglican Community School in Perth, spent part of September at St Michael’s College in Cardiff for the first ‘intensive’. Here he met chaplains from England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. He spent the second intensive in Hong Kong where he worked alongside students from the Diocese of Hong Kong.
Jean-Pierre said the student intake was diverse, going beyond those of us in the Christian tradition. People of other faiths are encouraged to study chaplaincy to meet the needs of their faith traditions. The course contains special Islamic and Buddhist components for research and reflection.
Jean-Pierre enjoyed being able ‘to tap into the knowledge and experience of the tutors as well as having access to the accumulated research of students who have passed through the College’s halls.
Jean-Pierre has also enjoyed meeting chaplains who minister in very different contexts from schools, meeting chaplains who work in the military, prisons, hospitals, airports, even shopping malls. He says this diversity gives the experience added depth and sets the course apart.
Jean-Pierre’s MTh studies were financially supported by the Anglican Schools Commission, St Mark’s Anglican Community School and the Diocese of Perth. Other dioceses and school principals are urged to consider supporting chaplains in this purposeful professional development.
Course costs are comparable to those in Australia.
A rich tradition of worship exists in many Anglican schools, from large public services to regular chapel worship for students, and services for staff and families. The school prayer or hymn often has a significant place in the worship tradition. These well-known components may be supplemented by a large number of additional worship resources and may be adapted in preparing worship to celebrate Anglican schools at diocesan, city, regional, deanery, parish, or school level.
Some dioceses/provinces already organise annual services at which schools, staff and students give thanks to God for this remarkable educational and missional enterprise. These diocesan/provincial services provide a model for others to hold similar services. The following resources provide a starting point for planning.
The various services in A Prayer Book for Australia (1995) provide a wealth of flexible material. The rites of Morning and Evening Prayer set out a clear pattern for worship that allows for hymn/song, opening sentences, Bible readings, reflection/sermon, Affirmation of Faith, Collect, Lord’s Prayer, Blessing, hymn/song. The Service of Praise and Proclamation (APBA, p.34ff) is especially recommended, along with the various daily services (APBA, 381ff).
For Eucharistic worship, the Third Order (APBA, p.167ff) gives flexibility, and Thanksgiving 5 (APBA, p.139ff) provides opportunity for greater congregational involvement.
APBA has many other resources to be explored. Prayers, litanies and confessions for various seasons and occasions are found at p.181ff. Occasional prayers include that for Australia (p.203), and Places of Learning (p.206). A collection of Thanksgivings is found at p.218ff, and Blessings on p.221.
Other resources include:
We hold before you the Anglican School communities
Throughout Australia and give thanks for our communion with one another.
We celebrate the diversity for which we are known ? the uniqueness and value of our many parts.
Empower us to serve our students, their families and our schools with the love of Christ.
Guide us in our planning, preaching and teaching, that
Your name be known and revered.
May we continue in the ancient call to do justice, love kindness and walk humbly with our God. (Mic 6.8)
We pray this in the name of Jesus Christ, our Lord and our Light.
God of wisdom, source of all truth, we pray for teachers and students in Anglican schools here and around the world. May we search for the truth and use it for the good of all. Enable us to grow in wisdom, and live in the love and understanding we see revealed in Jesus. May we learn to love you and to serve others in your name, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
(The Contemporary English Version, or another modern translation, is recommended for school use.)
Recommended selections from the Old Testament
Recommended selections from the Psalms
Recommended selections from the New Testament
Recommended selections from the Gospels
Hymns/Songs recommended from ‘Together in Song, Version 3’ (Australian Hymn Book II in electronic edition)
ASA runs a closed Facebook page for ASA Chaplains (https://www.facebook.com/groups/1690383871237877/) as a way of keeping in touch, sharing ideas and resources, and supporting one another. This is a forum to allow Chaplains to share discuss ideas throughout the year.
The Place for Mission blog is a place for people working in Anglican Schools to come together and discuss some of the joys and challenges of their work. Posts cover the many facets of schools ministry and include contributions from people working across Australia. The blog aims to stimulate thinking and to provide a platform where ideas can be shared and conversations kicked off.
Andrew Stewart, the chaplain at Mentone Grammar in Melbourne, curates the blog. He is always on the look out for contributions so if you have an idea to share or want to reflect on an aspect of ministry please be in contact with him – email@example.com
Chaplaincy in Anglican Schools: Guidelines for the Consideration of Bishops, Heads of School, Chaplains, and Heads of Theological Colleges
A paper by the late Reverend Dr Tom Wallace on behalf of the Australian Anglican Schools Network (now known as Anglican Schools Australia), Anglican Church Office, North Adelaide, Aug 1999.