For many years, the Bishop’s Office has encouraged congregations to conduct a Mutual Study of Ministry (MSM) every few years. An agreement to do an MSM about 18 months into the new priest’s tenure is part of all new Letters of Agreement between congregations and their Rectors or Priests in Charge.

The Canon to the Ordinary (or, if necessary, another consultant provided by Bishop Thomas Brown) facilitates all “first time” MSMs.  It’s helpful to have a couple of months lead time, so if a priest and congregation are nearing the 18 month mark, the priest should get in touch with the bishop to talk about the process and reserve a date for the first meeting with the Vestry. For more information, please read this letter describing the purposes and procedures: MSM Introduction Letter.

After that, it’s a good idea to conduct an MSM every two or three years; the Canon to the Ordinary generally does not facilitate those subsequent MSMs, but is happy to help you find a trained facilitator.