A week of filling in forms

A few weeks ago someone from New College (Uni of Edin) emailed our Bishop encouraging Piskie priests and lay readers to apply for the MTh and to say that Bursaries are available. It has been on my mind for some time – to do a Masters – and this seemed like the prompt I needed. Of course, coming as it did the week before Holy Week, I was only able to express interest at that point and then speak to the Vestry for approval which they did (not quite unanimously!).

With encouragement from New College, this week I have spent hours wrestling with the online application form.  They wanted my dissertation ( lost long ago in a defunct computer and hard copy borrowed but never returned) and my proposal for research. Didn’t realise you had to know quite so soon what you wanted to study. then they wanted 2 academic references – who would remember me after 9 years?  It did say that if you have been away for some time one academic and one line manager would do.  Contacted the person who supervised my dissertation and he rememered me but not my work so had to supply him with the said dissertation and my marks from every year of study!  Found them all but one, amazingly, but that’s not enough.  Took me two days in all and then discovered that there may not be Bursaries after all so it was probably all in vain. Bah.

Then I have spent the last two days filling in an 8 page form for my first Ministerial Review with the Bishop. How do I describe my ministry? Most and least enjoy? Balance of work commitment/family/friends? What theology have I read in past year? Impact on ministry? How do I pray? And so it goes on.

So, in answer to ‘what do I least enjoy?’ I think the answer this week is – filling in forms.


12 thoughts on “A week of filling in forms

  1. Nothing is ever in vain… and maybe the exercise is useful in working out possibilites/ that you might want to do some further study/ what you might want to focus on thinking about – whether or not it entails uni. study/ the mind or support of your vestry.

    Would be great fun having you around tho’, so hope it all works out. 🙂

  2. Now been told that without dissertation my application can’t go forward. I did say i’d found an old PT2 essay and they have suggested I update it. Ha! When and how? I’d have to scan it and then can’t change it. Oh well, that’s 2 days out of my life gone.

  3. You could quite validly kill, in Christian love, the person who never returned your dissertation.
    But that’s totally nuts that you’d need it – given the length of time it is unreasonable to expect you’d still have the thing. They shouldn’t have thrown out their copy!!

  4. I do know some scanners that will produce a text copy as well as an image file. Perhaps the national library might have one? Not that this necessarily makes life any easier! Paperwork is truly terrible, I sympathize greatly!

  5. Actually Ruthie, Elizabeth’s got a point re. scanners. And New College has a scanner in the library or the Manson lab which can do text copy….

  6. oh ruth your email made me so mad… new college they should welcome you with open arms and the massive amount of income you will bring with the fees… this is my experince of them…

    hello New College i studied with you 9 years ago . graduated MTh and need a copy of my transcript to apply for a new course… they say Sorry we have no records. you can have a letter to say you studied and did a placement but that is it. We cant even tell you what teachers or subjects where around.. Glasgow University were able to offer all the information form my 1998 degree…..

    there is a moral in this story go to Glasgow.

  7. Got it scanned and sent in, fwiw. Don’t hold out much hope.

    Mother Therese, I remember when you were going through this and it is shoddy. But I ain’t travelling through to Glasgow every week!

  8. Ruth, can I ask a more basic question:
    do you really want to do an MTh at Edinburgh??

    I know of one or two people who have made good use of it, but so many more who were frustrated and disappointed.

    Why not distance learning the Theology and the Arts at St Andrews? Or hop on an early train and go to Durham…

    If you are going to do it, make sure you look carefully at the course list — I could barely find enough things to take, since I wasn’t that interested in Reformed Everything. But maybe it’s changed again…

  9. This is pretty in-depth review stuff, Ruth, which I remember seeing something about from the diocesan mailing recently. Mind you, the shock of the diocesan one being so intense, still pales into insignificance when I was told that both colleagues and students would be asked about my performance at my annual review here!

  10. Ha, and what’s wrong with Reformed everything!!??? Technically, isn’t the Anglican church just another branch of reform? Okay, minus the Calvinism… and plus the bishops?
    *said she, stirring the pot*

  11. David, I once read an article in the Church Times about the need for review by the congregation and thought it was a good idea. Understand that not all clergy would though!

    I’m sure yours was all good.

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