Jon J. Marlow

Jon is the Diocesan Director of Ordinands and Vocations Officer for the Diocese of Canterbury. He seeks to help current and future church leaders engage with the cultures in which they are ministering, using innovative research methods to recognize and respond to where God is at work.

Jon is currently undertaking a doctorate with Durham University exploring public responses to works of contemporary art in English cathedrals. He writes:

In calling my thesis ‘Faith comes through seeing’, I am staking a claim that when a work of art performs all three of the operations identified by Semiologist Charles S. Pierce (Functioning as Symbol, Icon and Index), it can have an effect that is analogous to a verbal proclamation of religious belief. I intend to explore how art can be used as a vehicle for stimulating and communicating Christian faith and experience, especially in the context of a Christian worship space.

During the spring and summer of 2020, Jon conducted a number of online research projects exploring the experience and theology of lockdown with church members and leaders in the Diocese of Exeter. The data from this research has helped local and diocesan leaders to develop theological responses to some of the biggest questions raised by the pandemic and to face some of the practical challenges of lockdown with faithful decision making and practice. Before lockdown he developed diocesan-wide research projects using photo-elicitation and photo-voice to help churches develop their vision and engage with their local community.

Jon was ordained in the Diocese of Exeter in 2006 and was based in Plymouth (Britain’s Ocean City) as a Curate, Vicar and then as Diocesan Mission Community Development Team Leader.


Jon J. Marlow, Thriving in Curacy: Overcoming Common Problems in the Placement and Training of Curates, Grove Leadership Series; no. 42 (Cambridge: Grove Books, 2021).


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