On a Mission: Church and University join forces to engage with millennials
A partnership between the Diocese of Winchester and the University of Winchester has led to the creation of a new role that will bring the study of mission to the heart of the Diocese and as an integrated part of the University’s academic life. The Revd Francis Orr-Ewing, known as ‘Frog’, will take up the newly created post to become the Post-Doctoral Teaching Fellow of Mission.
As Postdoctoral Fellow in Mission at the University (founded on Anglican principles), Frog will join the School of Mission and help to provide training and research opportunities that support the strategic priorities of Winchester Diocese. In addition, Frog will be installed as Canon Theologian at Winchester Cathedral, a role that will give him the opportunity to consult, teach and stimulate theological reflection on mission and ministry. His passion for evangelism will influence how the Church engages with millennials and the ‘missing generations’ across the Diocese, nationally, and around the world.
Frog first studied theology as an undergraduate at the University of Oxford, where he met his wife Amy. After working in the City of London he trained for ordained ministry, completed an MTh in Applied Theology from Oxford University and served his title in St Aldate's Church, Oxford. From 2003 he led the vibrant and fast-growing community of All Saints Church Peckham. In 2010 Frog moved to start a pioneering community, Latimer Minster, in Beaconsfield, in the Diocese of Oxford, where he will remain Rector. In addition, over the last eight years Frog has taught at Wycliffe Hall, Oxford, and was Chaplain and Missioner of the Oxford Centre for Christian Apologetics.
Frog has extensive experience in university and parish missions, and is the founder of ‘Festival of Thought’, a public theology engagement with the global corporate community. The focus of his PhD research, from Kings College London, was on the Anglican urban church planters of 19th century England that had been inspired by world mission and involvement in the Church Missionary Society.
The Revd Frog Orr-Ewing, Post-Doctoral Teaching Fellow of Mission at the University of Winchester, said:
“I am delighted to start this new role, and so look forward to working with the Diocese of Winchester and the University of Winchester over the coming years and forging new training and equipping opportunities especially for postgraduate and vocational qualifications, that can serve the academic and church communities. The possibilities are immense and there is so much to gain from this new era of partnership and creativity.”
The Rt Revd Tim Dakin, Bishop of Winchester, said:
“The creation of this new post and the appointment of Frog marks an exciting moment and is testament to the strength of the relationship and partnership between the Diocese and the University of Winchester. Combined with Frog’s appointment as Canon Theologian at the Cathedral, this provides the ideal opportunity for the wider Diocese and the Cathedral to draw on Frog’s background, experience and missional teaching to encourage mission growth, particularly within the student population, and also in partnership with the Diocese’s companion links around the world.”
Professor Elizabeth Stuart, Deputy Vice Chancellor at the University of Winchester, said:
“The creation of this new role and our partnership with the Diocese of Winchester is fitting for a university that was founded on the Christian values of mutual and community flourishing. I am delighted that Frog has taken up this role and look forward to the contribution that he will make to the academic study of mission here at the University of Winchester and beyond.”
Mark Collinson, Canon Principal of Winchester Cathedral and the School of Mission, said:
“I am delighted that Frog has accepted our invitation to work in this unique collaboration with the University of Winchester and the Diocese of Winchester School of Mission. His energy, enthusiasm and breadth of experience of sharing Christian faith in both Western and global contexts will open up mission opportunities across the Diocese and with the Cathedral."