Together for the Common Good wins strategic award to develop lay leadership
Together for the Common Good (T4CG) has won a strategic award to deliver a 12 month programme of lay leadership development within Catholic dioceses and other communities.
The award, from the Charles Plater Trust, was presented to T4CG by Cardinal Vincent Nichols, one of CTE’s Presidents. The £50,000 grant will be shared with five diocesan and charity partners; the Caritas organisations of Nottingham, Brentwood and Shrewsbury dioceses, plus Nugent Liverpool and the Parish of St Mary Moorfields in the City of London.
Each partner will deploy T4CG’s “Here: Now: Us People” Common Good workshop as part of their lay formation and parish development plans. T4CG will recruit a Project Leader to coordinate the programme over 2020-2021, and it is envisaged that 400 people will participate.
Cardinal Nichols said:
“Together for the Common Good is exploring some of the most important themes in our society today: how do we build a more resilient sense of shared endeavour? What will bring about a common effort across our society? These challenges are so important as we face deep-seated changes in our way of life, in new relations with Europe, and with the created world. I am delighted that this work will be strengthened by this award from the Plater Trust.”
Underpinned by Catholic Social Teaching, the programme inspires and equips lay people to fulfil their vocational responsibility by putting Common Good principles into practice and by working with others of different opinions and backgrounds. Through building local relationships, participants will tackle the breakdown in social trust within their communities.
The Charles Plater Trust funds projects relating to Catholic Social Teaching and in Catholic contexts. However, the Here: Now: Us People resource is designed for mixed cohorts of Christians from different traditions working together. It is ideal for Churches Together groups.
T4CG is seeking funding to roll out the programme more widely and discussions with strategic Anglican, Free Church and other ecumenical partners are underway.
Jenny Sinclair, Founder Director of T4CG said:
“We’re excited to be working with five fantastic partners. The Here: Now: Us programme makes explicit the connection between faith and action. It acts as a catalyst to inspire lay people to play their part, from the grassroots to the boardroom. In this era of social fragmentation, developing Common Good lay leadership is a gift the Church can bring to help strengthen our communities and contribute to national renewal.”
The resource fills a gap in lay formation and parish development, strengthening engagement within local communities and cultivating more diverse and collaborative forms of lay leadership. The resource also provides effective and accessible Catholic Social Teaching formation for staff and volunteers in Catholic agencies. It helps people to articulate why they do what they do, helping to guard against mission drift.
T4CG is now recruiting for the Plater Trust funded Project Leader role, a part-time position commencing in April. The application deadline is 23 March 2020.
Project partners share their vision
Partners anticipate that the programme will strengthen lay leadership, deepen the sense of shared mission and increase social action volunteering:
Paul Bodenham, Programme Leader for Social Action, Diocese of Nottingham said:
“The programme will help foster and harness the faith, commitment and know-how of the people of the diocese through lay formation, peer-support and co-operation. We anticipate it will help us ensure forthcoming parish reorganisation results in confident, generous, missionary communities.”
Steven Webb, Director of Development, Diocese of Brentwood said:
“Our aim is for the resource to help us foster more faith-inspired charitable works and encourage more lay people to take on new leadership roles within the diocese. We expect more well- trained, well-formed people (including young people) who will pass on their learning to others.”
Mary Kilcoyne, CEO, Caritas Diocese of Shrewsbury said:
“T4CG’s support and resources will enable us to train facilitators to strengthen lay leadership in several areas of the Diocese.” Mary added that the programme would support the diocese’s aim to “build stronger, supportive missionary communities… and create Caritas parishes sharing our mission of loving service to others.”
Marie Reynolds, Caritas Manager, Nugent Liverpool said:
“We have been researching how to train our volunteers to become more involved with Catholic Social Action. T4CG’s Here: Now: Us People resource will enable us to develop a formation programme for better trained leaders who in turn will be active and take on more responsibility within their local communities.”
Fr Chris Vipers, Parish Priest at St Mary Moorfields said:
“We are the only Roman Catholic church in the City of London. T4CG’s Here: Now: Us People Common Good workshops will enable members of our parish to bring Catholic social thinking into the square mile and to help build a society built on gospel teaching in which everyone can flourish.”
Find out more
For more information:
About Together for the Common Good
Together for the Common Good (T4CG) is a small charity helping people across the churches play their part to strengthen the bonds of social trust, and is one of CTE’s Bodies in Association (organisations working ecumenically).
We see a society in the UK today that has deep fault lines and is more polarised and fragmented than it has been for many years.
Our work involves calling people to fulfill their unique vocational responsibility by putting Common Good principles into practice and by working with others of different opinions and backgrounds in shared purpose to build up civil society.
Visit Together for the Common Good (T4CG)'s website at www.togetherforthecommongood.co.uk
Photo details: Taken by Marcin Mazur of Philomena Cullen and Cardinal Vincent Nichols (Chair of Trustees, the Charles Plater Trust) presenting the award to Jenny Sinclair, Alison Gelder and Catherine Brady of Together for the Common Good.