Types of ministry

Expressions of Ministry

In the Diocese of Bendigo there are three expressions of being a deacon or priest:

  • Stipendiary
  • Ordained Local Ministry (OLM)
  • Ordained Pioneer Ministry (OPM)


Stipendiary Ordained Ministry
This expression is the most common in the diocese and includes most parish-based stipendiary (paid) clergy.

It assumes that clergy in this category:

  • Have undertaken a tertiary qualification in theology
  • Believe they are called to ministerial leadership within the established parochial system of the Church
  • Recognise that their gifts for ministry will combine evangelism with pastoral care, preaching, teaching and leading worship

This expression of ordained ministry will aim to develop the life of the People of God in a parish context, for the service of God in the Church and wider community.


Ordained Local Ministry (OLM)
Ordained Local Ministry is seen primarily as an assisting ministry to stipendiary clergy. The experience so far has been of the bishop ‘tapping possible candidates on the shoulder’, or from a process of discernment where candidates are nominated by the local congregation.

The call here is a recognition of the ministerial leadership and qualities that the candidate has already demonstrated. OLM is arising in this diocese out of a situation that can best be described as ‘local church – locally grown’.


Ordained Pioneer Ministry (OPM)
The term Pioneer Ministry recognises the ministry of people who:

  • Are starting or sustaining a ‘fresh expression’ of church, a form of church for our changing culture established primarily for the benefit of people not yet members of any church
  • Are already ministering in a context outside of church structures. This may include street ministry, youth work, and social justice, ministry in a secular work place or place of recreation. It can be anywhere people gather


Qualities for those considering Ordained Pioneer Ministry include:

  • Authentic and integrated understanding of this ministry
  • Capacity to innovate and initiate
  • Mature and developed devotional life
  • Well developed abilities to initiate change and enable others to face it in a flexible and balanced way
  • Demonstrate maturity and robustness in the face of the demands of pioneering ministry
  • Self motivation
  • A good understanding of Gospel and Culture
  • A clear vision of how pioneer ministry fits with the Church’s wider mission
  • An ability and desire to work collaboratively
  • A commitment to the diocese and its mission, vision and values


Several clergy and lay people are involved in specific chaplaincy ministry areas in hospitals, community liaison, with the police, and in the education and criminal justice systems within the diocese.



The Rev’d Canon Heather Marten
Ministry Development Officer