Readers are called to minister as Skilled Teachers of the Faith, Enablers of Mission and Leaders in Church and Society. They minister in a variety of different situations from parish to workplace chaplaincy, and bring an extraordinary range of gifts into ministry: preaching the Gospel in worship, leading study groups, assisting in pastoral ministry, connecting a world of work and social need with our worship, drawing on insights from daily life and many realms of experience.

Over 250 Readers are licensed by the Bishop in our Diocese for a ministry of preaching and teaching in a pastoral context. We are keen to develop Reader ministry among all age groups and with people from as broad an experience of life as is truly representative of Birmingham and the surrounding region.

Have a look at our videos below to hear the stories of two Readers in our Diocese, Val and David.

Watch the story of Val, a Reader in the Church of England Birmingham who has found that her ministry as a Reader gives her confidence to speak to others about her faith and to value those she speaks to.


Hear the story of David, a Reader in the Church of England Birmingham and how he has discovered that his Reader ministry gives him a firm foundation in his workplace.


Reader Training

Specific training events for Readers are organised as part of the Readers' Continuing Ministerial Education programme. These are planned by a team made up of Readers and the Head of Ministry Formation. There are usually three training days in this programme each year: a Saturday in May (often on a Biblical or pastoral theme), a training day in September for Readers wishing to train for Funeral Ministry, and a Saturday in the Autumn which focuses on the particular book of the gospel for the coming preaching year.

It is helpful to know of training opportunities which Readers around the Diocese have found helpful. If you have news to share on these please let your Assistant Warden or the Warden know. If you are interested in training to become a Reader, please have a look at our Reader Training page.

Grants for further training

The Birmingham Readers’ Association is pleased to offer financial support to Readers wishing to pursue further study and training to develop their ministry. Have a look at our Grants for further training page to find out more.