Ministries Council

Our remit

The remit of the Ministries Council is the enabling of ministries in every part of Scotland, giving special priority to the poorest and most marginalized, through the recruitment, training and support of recognised ministries of the Church and the assessment and monitoring of patterns of deployment of those ministries.

In the fulfilment of this remit, the Council offers strategic leadership in the development of patterns of collaborative ministry which enable the Church of Scotland to be effective in its missionary calling and faithful in its participation in the one ministry of Jesus Christ, and operates within the following spheres of work,

Our work

The policy development and implementation of the Council's work is carried out by committees in each of these areas.

Priority Areas - Following the Gospel imperative of priority to the poor and working directly in support of the poorest parishes in Scotland, developing resources to enable ministries and build communities of hope, enabling and supporting work in partnership with ecumenical, interfaith and statutory agencies to achieve the goal of alleviating poverty in Scotland.

Education and Support - Recruitment, Training and Support of Ministries Personnel

  • Developing and implementing patterns of enquiry and assessment and vocational guidance which enable the identification of appropriately called and gifted people to train for recognised ministries
  • Developing and implementing training patterns for those accepted into training for the recognised ministries of the Church
  • Enabling the transfer of people from other denominations into the ministries of the Church
  • Delivering pastoral support to those involved in the recognised ministries of the Church through the development and resourcing of local pastoral networks, direct one-to-one engagement and the provision of occupational health support, counselling, mediation and conflict resolution services
  • Promoting and providing vocational guidance and life-long learning opportunities for ministries personnel through in-service events, self-appraisal processes and a study leave programme

Partnership Development - Working with Presbyteries and other Partners in Planning and Resourcing Ministries

  • Working with Presbyteries, for effective deployment of ministries to meet the needs of the parishes of Scotland and charges in the Presbytery of England, including consulting with congregations and other denominations where appropriate
  • Working in partnership with other agencies of the Church and ecumenical partners, to enable the emergence of ministries to meet the needs of the people of Scotland in every part
  • Supporting those engaged in chaplaincy services both directly employed by the Council and employed by other agencies
  • Ensuring best practice in the employment, care and support of staff, including setting appropriate terms and conditions, offering developmental training to staff and those responsible for their management

Finance - Ensuring good management of funds and monitoring budgets

  • Planning strategically for the future funding of the recognised ministries of the Church
  • Managing the funds and overseeing the budgeting processes of the Council to ensure that maximum benefit is derived for the Church's ministries through the use of income and capital
  • Preparing recommendations on the level of stipends and salaries and liaising with Pension Trustees on matters relating to the setting of the Standard Annuity and discretionary increases in pension, and negotiating and reaching agreement with Pension Trustees on funding rates

Strategic Planning Group - Reporting to the Council with ideas on the future strategic direction of the Council's work.

The Council also has a number of task groups which undertake specific areas of work.

Meet the Ministries Council Team

Ministries Council team structure

Our membership

The Council comprises 38 members + 1 Convener and 4 Vice-Conveners (43). In addition, there are 4 appointments from other bodies (HM Forces Chaplains; Housing & Loan; General Trustees; Diaconate Council).


The Ministries Council will meet on the following dates:

  • Thursday 22 June, 2017
  • Wednesday 30 – Thursday 31 August, 2017
  • Wednesday 25 Oct, 2017
  • Wednesday 6 December, 2017
  • Wednesday 14 February, 2018
  • Wednesday 21 March, 2018


Minutes from Ministries Council meetings:



Contact for more information

Email us at or contact us at the Church's offices in Edinburgh.