Will you help to train a priest?
How to give to TAP: the Church Times Train-A-Priest Fund and TAP Special Hardship Fund.
Download the TAP information leaflet
Go to online giving page
What does the TAP Fund do?
The Church Times Train-A-Priest (TAP) Fund was set up by Rosamund Essex, Editor of the Church Times, in 1952, when the number of Church of England ordinands who were married with children increased sharply. Since then the Fund has existed mainly to provide support for the dependants of married ordinands in theological college training.
More than 5870 ordinands and their families over the years have received valuable help from the Fund.
Unmarried ordinands, too
Since 1997, dioceses have been able to draw on the Fund to support unmarried ordinands, too.
The level of grants made towards the maintenance costs of married and single ordinands in college and mixed-mode or context-based training has been between £178 and £1050. The average grant made in the past year to married candidates with children has been £980.
There is also a TAP Special Hardship Fund to which all candidates in particular financial need can apply, whether married or single or training at a College or Regional Course or Ordained Local Ministry Scheme.
Any grants given from the Special Hardship Fund are not taken into account by dioceses when setting the level of ordinary support.
This year, 10 per cent of donations to the TAP Fund will be directed towards the Special Hardship Fund, in addition to any donations specially earmarked for this purpose.
Emergency grants have been made to 41 candidates in the past year (a total of £14,415).
How can I give to the Fund?
The Fund is organised by the Church Times, to whom donations should be sent. The Church Times has never deducted any administrative costs. This means that every pound you give goes straight to the support of the priesthood.
The assessment and administration of grants from the Fund is undertaken by the Ministry Division of the Archbishops' Council.
The easiest way to donate is by means of the special online giving page: www.hymnsam.co.uk/train-a-priest.aspx.
This is a secure page, and so your donation can be given safely, in just a few moments.
Send a cheque
We still accept cheques, postal orders, cash and charity cheques. Please make cheques payable to "The TAP Fund" and send to:
Hymns Ancient & Modern
13a Hellesdon Park Road
If your donation is eligible for Gift Aid please include a completed Gift Aid form: Train-A-Priest Fund information leaflet and Gift Aid form
If you have a charity account with Sovereign Giving or the Charities Aid Foundation, you can give by charity cheque.
If you are a UK payer of income or capital gains tax, a payment by Gift Aid means that the Church Times, through Hymns Ancient & Modern, can recover 25p for every £1 that you give.
A donation of £10 becomes £12.50 to the Fund.
If you pay tax at the higher rate (40 or 50 per cent), then you can claim back the difference between basic and higher-rate tax yourself when you complete your annual tax return.
To add Gift Aid simply select this option on the Online Giving Page or, if you are sending a donation by post, complete the Gift Aid Form.
The Bishop of Sheffield writes
The Bishop of Sheffield, Dr Steven Croft, who chairs the Ministry Division of the Archbishops' Council, has written to the Editor of the Church Times (20 February 2014):
Sir, - As we approach Lent, our thoughts turn to the call of Christ to follow him as a community of missionary disciples. For some, this takes the form of a call to ordained ministry. Some respond to this call while in their teens and twenties and are able to offer their whole working lives to ordained ministry. Some leave behind successful careers in order to minister in areas of great need. Therefore we are most grateful that the Church Times is once again running its Lent Train-A-Priest Fund appeal. . .
The TAP Fund continues to provide our ordinands with valuable financial support, allowing them to concentrate fully on their training. Every penny given by your readers goes to the ordinands and their families to help with living costs or (via the TAP Special Hardship Fund) unforeseen financial difficulty. . . When the Church is looking hard at ways significantly to increase the number of ordained ministers, the need for the TAP Fund is as great as ever.
We pray that, as your readers bless our future clergy through their generous gifts, so they, too, may be blessed this Lent.
Church House, London SW1
Last year's appeal brought the grand total raised by the TAP Fund over the years to
(that is, more than £9 million in current values)
all for the direct maintenance and support of ordinands and their families.
A TAP prayer for Lent
For all who are training to be priests in the Church of England
look mercifully on your Church
and on all who offer themselves
to be trained for the priesthood;
so that by their labours your light
may shine in the world,
and the coming of your kingdom
may be hastened;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.