FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions
What age do you have to be to join?
Ideally, 18 to 30 but we are open to older members on a case by case basis.
I live abroad can I come?
At present the scheme is only available to British/EU citizens who can reside and legally take up employment here. This may change as Brexit legislation develops. If you believe you have a valid visa to the UK please feel free to contact us and discuss this further.
What is the faith criteria for entry?
You must be a practising Christian, ie. someone who professes the Christian faith and be a member of a church or chaplaincy.
Is it limited to Anglicans?
No, but the charity operates in an Anglican context.
How is it funded?
The charity receives various grants and members are expected to work in one of sponsoring business in the hospitality trade for just over two days a week. Currently, members contribute £50 of their earnings a week.
Is it "high church" or "evangelical"?
It is in one sense both. The warden, Daniel, is a keen promoter of a generous orthodoxy and C S Lewis' notion of a 'mere Christianity' which combines both evangelical sensibilities and passion with catholic spirituality. Our participants have been a mix of high and low churchmanship.
Can I join if I am in a relationship?
We ask that participants are be able to give fully of themselves to this special year. If you are in a relationship then you will have to ask yourself how consuming and distracting this could be to your time here? With this in mind we ask that participants follow the same guidelines of professional conduct of the clergy with regards to sexual conduct and acknowledge the Biblical principles of holiness where sexual relations are contained in exclusively in marriage.
What if I enter into a relationship while in the year in community?
We ask for a serious discernment before rushing in because this is such a special year out. In particular romantic relationships should never be sought with other participants as this would be unfair to whole intentional community.
Is this community open to both men and women?
Men and women are welcome.
Where is it?
The current house was based in the village of Malborough and as this is now allocated to an HTB curate we are in the final negotiations for a new house in the same village.
Are there young people around?
Yes, and particularly in the summer when hundreds of seasonal workers are taken into employments. There is a quite a buzz about the place.
Is there opportunity for youth work?
The scheme links in with Youth for Christ Kingsbridge and we expect you to volunteer with them for at least half a day a week. In the past two years the majority of pastoral work has been youth-based and Fresh Expression based.
How is selection done?
You apply via this website We will then make a decision about inviting you or not. If successful you can come to a day of exploration where you will be interviewed.
Will I need to be DBS checked?
Yes, unless you have already been checked in the Diocese of Exeter and this is current. We will still ask you make a confidential declaration irrespective of whether you have a DBS or not? This is because you will be working with children and vulnerable adults.
What are the entry points?
We are fairly flexible but in essence we want to have all entrants in by January 2020.
Is there a time probation period?
Yes, six weeks. At the end you will be interviewed to see if this is right for you.
What if I am in the Church of England discernment process?
The Diocesan Director of Ordinands of your diocese and this diocese will have a conversation about how your discernment process may continue. Where possible we prefer that you do not go to Bishop's Advisory Panel (BAP) until near the end of 12 months.
Is this only for future vicars?
No, last year we took a former teacher and watched him find his true vocation as an artist.
What are the practical arrangements?
Residents each have their own bedroom. Each room is furnished but please bring your own bedding. Business journeys are reimbursed at 45p/mile for car owners. Residents take it turns to do jobs around the house including cooking and cleaning .
What about meal times?
Residents are expected to cook communal healthy meals. In the past some have grown their own vegetables. Special diets can be catered for.
Can I come if I have a disability?
The scheme is both mentally and physically challenging and we would need to have a further discussion to see if this were possible.
Do I get time off in the year?
We allow for the same kind of holiday time as anyone working in a full-time job might expect. Members have Monday off.
Will I be expected to do academic study?
Participants will travel to Plymouth on Tuesdays in term time for a day of study with the St Mellitus South West Theological College. As this is an audit (just attending) there is no written work. We would like you to study within your capacity. We encouraged members to journal their experiences.
I'm not very good at praying - does this matter?
All that is needed is a willingness to have a go and an openness to guidance. We are not looking for spiritual experts from day one.
What guidance will be provided?
The local clergy, Daniel, Christian and Judy provide pastoral support. The parish administrator Debbie gives some advice and time in running the scheme on a practical level. Bishop Nick, the Bishop of Plymouth acts as overseers ('Visitor') of the whole scheme. The diocese also provides access to spiritual directors who see members once a month for an informal conversation about participants' spiritual life.
Can my parents come to visit?
Yes, and we can help find accommodation for them?
What is 'New Monasticism'?
This is a movement of people who are opting to make a commitment to Christian community and are open to a radical way of living. It is not an attempt to play at being monks or nuns but recognises that the deep tradition of the monastic life has something to shape and inform the present and future church.
Do I have to wear special clothes?
No, but members did design a hoody last year which we will order for you. Some parishioners also made a crosses on ropes . A few of times a year we invite members to wear an alb for big services like Easter and Christmas. This is the nearest you get to look monkish!
Is there a lot of chanting?
No, this community is not pretending to be something it is not. There is daily prayer, worship and contemplative prayer and residents are welcome to lead it in the style they feel most comfortable with. We have seen a mix of evangelical and catholic styles of worship.
Will I be comfortable worshipping in the local churches?
We have three local Anglican Churches, Holy Trinity Salcombe, All Saints Malborough, Holy Trinity Galmpton. All three are very welcoming friendly churches. See www.salcombechurch.co.uk They have something for everyone ranging from a 60 member Gospel Choir, Messy Church, Sunday Eucharists, Evensong, Taize Services, etc. We also from time to time link up with the HTB Resource church in Plymouth - St Matthias.
Why is it called St Peter's Foundation?
St Peter comes from the fact Malborough Church used to be called that in the 19th century. The cathedral in Exeter is also named after the apostle and so has a special place in the heart of the diocese. The word 'foundation' reminds us that much of the work of this charity is building foundations for future Christian leaders.
Is there wifi, phone, TV?
Yes, there is wifi, mobile phone signal and a telephone. There is a large TV in the living room.