Getting the language right

In relating to your 'opposite numbers' in Partner Churches, there is nothing more infuriating than misunderstanding the terminology describing their Church, eg for Anglicans, a deanery is not the same as a diocese;

The regional expression of the United Reformed Church is a synod not a province; nor is it the United Reform Church!

Your Baptist colleague in the church leaders/representatives' meeting is likely to be known as the regional minister.

Establishing a database that gets right the titles of your fellow church leaders/representatives will reduce annoyance and gain friends.

Titles include:
The Bishop of the (named) Roman Catholic Diocese
The Bishop of the (named) Church of England Diocese (many have suffragen (assistant) bishops, some with an area responsibility), Church in Wales, Episcopalian Church
The Moderator of the (Regional) Synod of the United Reformed Church
The Regional Minister of the (Regional) Baptist Association
The Divisional Commander of the (Regional) Division of the Salvation Army - the Officer's rank may vary
The Moderator of the Church of Scotland
The Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Wales

Particular care needs to be taken where smaller churches are involved, eg Black and Ethnic Minority Churches, Evangelical and Pentecostal Churches, small Free Churches and Fresh Expressions.

Be vigilant about how partner Churches are described in Orders of Service - 'ecumenical partners' is preferable to 'non-Methodists;

'Representatives of Partner Churches' is better than 'Representatives of Other Churches';
The printing of detailed titles and roles needs to be accurate and checked carefully.

(This note could usefully be copied to your district officers and superintendents).

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