After serving as a parish priest for over twenty years in Rochester and Guildford dioceses Paul joined the Bishop’s Senior Staff Team in January 2014 as Archdeacon of Dorking.
An Archdeacon with a ‘missional’ focus, Paul works with clergy, deaneries and PCCs to bring about fresh vision and growth. In particular Paul has a heart for ‘transforming deaneries,’ resourcing and encouraging clergy, parishes, and deaneries to work together to frame the diocesan vision ‘transforming church, transforming lives.’ Along with the Archdeacon of Surrey Paul manages the Appointments Process for the diocese.
Bringing caring for clergy to the heart of the diocese, Paul’s ministry is committed to the well- being and pastoral care of clergy “the life and growth of our parishes, our diocese and the National Church are vitally dependent upon the resourcing, releasing, health and wholeness of our clergy, and it is to this that I am committed.”
In 2015 Paul was elected to serve on General Synod with a particular calling to support ‘Renewal and Reform.’ In his Election Address Paul outlined he was standing “to bring a fresh pair of eyes to Synodical initiatives; to represent the parish and priesthood at the heart of decision making; to take brave decisions now for the sake of the future of our Church; to bring a determination to see through the programme of reform and renewal, and to embrace the vision and challenge this next Synod presents to God's Church.” Paul recently spoke at Synod in support of school admissions policies for clergy families.
Throughout his ministry Paul has developed a passion for exploring new ways of being Church - particularly relating to discipleship, small groups and church structures. He speaks on Café Church Fresh Expressions, growing new vision for corporate and personal renewal and has led retreats in this country and abroad including ‘In the Wake of St Paul’ retreats aboard a gulet in the Aegean, and a mountain biking retreat in the Sierra Nevada!
As a former teacher and Head of Religious, Studies Paul has a passion for education. Over the last twenty years or so this has particularly focussed on fostering the aims and ethos of Church Schools. He has served as a Diocesan Schools Inspector, a member of several Governing Bodies across a range of schools, and as a Director of the Guildford Diocese’s Academy Trust, ‘The Good Shepherd Trust.’ He currently serves on the Diocesan Board of Education.
Paul is married to Fiona who also works for the Church of England and has three children in their twenties as well as an energetic Springer Spaniel named Badger! He enjoys a range of activities including squash, badminton, mountain biking, ‘prayer running,’ rambling and sea kayaking. Long distance walks and pilgrimage have often featured in Paul’s life - highlights include the St Paul’s Trail Turkey, the Camino, St Cuthbert’s Way, the Offa’s Dyke Path and Pennine Way.
You can follow Paul on twitter @paulbdorking