The Chelmsford Diocese has announced that it will be cutting a number of stipendiary jobs in a bid to balance its budget sheet in light of the ongoing financial fallout from Covid-19.
Following a meeting of the diocesan synod’s finance committee, it was decided that 60 jobs were to be cut, with plans for stipendiary jobs to be reduced to the “‘minimum sustainable number’ of 215 by 2025."
A briefing from the meeting explained:
“The time is now right to reconsider the number of stipendiary curates we will need to maintain incumbent numbers as well as the length of curacies and the possibility of placing curates towards the end of their training to support vacant parishes. We do not plan to furlough stipendiary curates in order that training and formation continues. And we recognise that many of our curates have been in the forefront of applying technology for ‘church at home’.”
A diocesan spokesperson added: “Periodic review and monitoring of the number of stipendiary incumbency posts in the diocese of Chelmsford is part of a strategic mission planning cycle that started in 2011. Like all organisations, we have experienced a significant financial impact as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Triggering a new review at this time is based on mitigating a worst-case financial scenario, while we pray and work for the best.
“Indeed, in recent days, we have been encouraged by the generous giving that we have seen in many of our parishes and the support for our clergy and churches as they serve their communities during this time of great need.”