Jesus leads the Church through His Word. In a local church this is expressed through elders who teach the Bible, one or more of whom are set apart to bear the significant preaching responsibility (referred to as ministers, pastors or church leaders). The most important thing a minister does is preach, so being equipped to preach is the main thing in a minister’s training.

The Trust runs small overnight training conferences for Church Leaders in Training funded by the Trust, in order to develop these leaders’ preaching. There are a number of groups, each consisting of up to 12 participants who are at a similar stage in training.

Typically, Church Leaders in Training are funded by the Trust for 3 or 4 years. We ask Church Leaders in Training to commit to an annual Bonar Trust preaching conference with the same group of people over the 3 or 4 years. Our experience is that as people get to know and trust one another, they are committed to working hard together on preaching. Testimony to this is that the first group, having completed their formal training and now serving in leadership roles in churches, continue to meet annually.

The aim is that these groups continue to meet when they have finished their formal training, not only to work on their preaching and Bible teaching, but to embrace the accountability and support these groups give. This is what is happening with groups post-training continuing to meet. Moreover, these networks function formally through organized conferences, but alongside this in numerous other interactions through the year.

These are the leaders who will develop the vision and strategy for ministry training across Scotland.