Title invitation for Theology Slam winner

AUGUSTINE TANNER-IHM has been invited to take up his post at St James and Emmanuel’s Church, Didsbury, in the Diocese of Manchester, subject to obtaining a visa.

Mr Tanner-Ihm, who is African American but has lived in the UK for nine years, won the Theology Slam 2020 competition, in which he spoke of being told by a diocesan director of the ordinands that he would not fit. a cure in a “monochrome white working class, where you might feel uncomfortable” (News, June 26, 2020).

Mr Tanner-Ihm completed his ordination training at Cranmer Hall, Durham, last June, but had struggled to secure a title post after being told by many parishes that they could not afford a vicar, he said on Tuesday. The situation had been exacerbated by the pandemic and he had not yet obtained a visa. The lack of a title post meant it was not ordained last year.

As of the start of this year, however, Home Office rules have been changed so ministers no longer have to prove they can do a job better than a Briton, increasing the likelihood that they will do a job better than a Briton. get a visa. He hopes to get a visa in time for his ordination, which is scheduled for July 4.

In addition, he said, the Archbishop of York, Bishop Stephen Cottrell, who was Mr Tanner-Ihm’s sending bishop when he was Bishop of Chelmsford, and the Bishop of Manchester, Dr. David Walker, had worked with the ministry’s division to secure funds. for the post of commissioners of the Church, as they had done for other posts in the diocese.

The St James and Emmanuel newsletter reported last week: “We are delighted to announce that Bishop David [Walker] wrote to Augustine formally inviting him to take up his title post at St James and Emmanuel subject to visa. Please pray for him and the visa situation.

Mr Tanner-Ihm said on Tuesday that he knew the parish well, having interned there at Easter 2019, and that he was delighted to serve in an “inclusive evangelical parish”.

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