(Picture courtesy Campion Hall, Oxford)

The Dioceses of Durham and Newcastle are pleased to announce the appointment of the Revd Dr Jennifer Cooper as the new Director of Initial Ministerial Education (IME) Phase 2.  In this role, she will lead the programme of training for a diverse and growing cohort of curates in the initial phase of ministry, as well as supporting training incumbents and parishes. Jennifer is currently Academic Dean and Lecturer in Theology at the College of the Resurrection, Mirfield, an Anglican theological college preparing women and men for ordained ministry. Jennifer brings with her a wealth of experience of parish ministry and social outreach as well as theological education. Jennifer will begin her ministry in Durham and Newcastle in the New Year.

Commenting on her appointment, Jennifer said, “My ministry as a priest and theologian has been filled with many blessings, and none more welcome and exciting than this invitation to serve in the Dioceses of Durham and Newcastle in this role. It is a great privilege to work with women and men called to serve the Church in ordained ministry and with all those who support them in the important task of ongoing formation for the sake of the Gospel.  The opportunity to continue serving in the work of ministerial formation now through IME2 is a tremendous grace.

“As a Canadian, I am a northerner at heart. I am deeply thankful for my many years at the College of the Resurrection in Mirfield. And now I look forward to making my home in the North East with anticipation and gratitude.”

The Bishop of Durham, the Rt Revd Paul Butler commented, “Jennifer’s appointment is excellent news for the two dioceses. Having spent the past decade preparing people from a whole range of backgrounds for ordained ministry, Jennifer is ideally placed to work with us to develop our work with curates. Her proven ability as a theological educator and mission-minded priest will be a great asset to the Diocese of Durham as we continue to bless our communities in Jesus’ name as clergy and laity together.”

The Bishop of Newcastle, the Rt Revd Christine Hardman said, “I am truly delighted that Jennifer is joining us in this role.  Her commitment to the formation of men and women for ministry, passion for theology as a practical discipline, and desire to serve the Gospel through the life of the Church are infectious, and I look forward to the contribution she will make as we embrace the challenges and opportunities of mission and ministry here in the North East.”