This post is for a House for Duty Associate Priest, to share with colleagues in a group of villages between the market towns of Stokesley and Yarm. Church life is well embedded in the communities, enhanced by the presence of a church school. There is good lay leadership in the parishes, and a stable pattern of worship. The focus of the Associate Priest's ministry will be pastoral, whilst having an eye to fresh missional opportunities. Over the next few years there is likely to be some re-grouping of the parishes, and the support that the appointee can give during this time will be an important element in moving forward.
Who we are
We are a newly formed group of parishes to the north of the North York Moors in rural North Yorkshire but within easy access of the main commuter routes to York, Leeds, Middlesbrough, Durham and Newcastle. The recent retirement of two clergy in adjacent benefices has given us the opportunity to restructure ministry in this area and we are seeking an Interim Associate Minister to help the emerging ministry team here to achieve this task.
The villages of Hutton Rudby, Middleton, Crathorne, Swainby, Carlton, Faceby and Potto vary in size and character – more information on each village and church can be found in the attached parish profile. Many people in the area commute into Middlesbrough or wider afield to work but there is also still a significant rural component to the ministry here, and a ministry to the large number of tourists who visit the area each year to enjoy the spectacular natural beauty on our doorstep.
The churches are all of a central tradition with a range of worship styles. Some churches would normally expect clergy to wear a cassock alb and chasuble but there is a great deal of flexibility amongst all the congregations. The buildings also vary in style, from the Grade 1 listed All Saints in Hutton Rudby to the much simpler chapel of ease of St Mary’s in Potto. There are 4 open churchyards which give a great opportunity for positive engagement with funeral ministry, and one church school in Carlton. In addition there is a community school in Hutton Rudby with whom we have growing links.
The churches in this area are going through a period of significant change. For the next 2 -3 years, three separate groups of parishes will be served by one ministry team on a transitional basis. Discussions about future arrangements are moving forward, on the basis of which it is likely that the parishes will be re-formed into two new mission groups. The transitional group is under the oversight of the highly experienced Rector of Yarm, Revd Canon John Ford, ably supported by two assistant curates (John will be Priest-in-Charge in the parishes to which this post-holder is licensed). In addition there are 4 active and experienced Readers plus a number of ‘retired clergy’ who support ministry across the deanery. The laity of the parishes are gifted and encouraging and contribute significant time and energy to the ministry in their communities.
The key issue facing the churches in the group over the next few years is to create two sustainable ministry groups, equipped and enabled to meet the missional and pastoral needs of the parishes. To help us in this task, we are looking for another priest to offer pastoral ministry with a missional edge to the communities here, complementing the gifts of the existing ministry team and providing some additional focal ministry across the group. We have strong ecumenical links, particularly in Hutton Rudby, and some really wonderful buildings in which to meet, including the new Church Hall in Swainby which is often used by groups from across the Archdeaconry for meetings, and the reordered Methodist Chapel in Hutton Rudby which has been transformed into a thriving community café. The opportunities for outreach are endless!
What we offer
We have already described the large and very able ministry team across the wider group. In the southern half of the group to which this post would be licensed is:
The house is a pleasant 4 bedroomed modern house in the village of Swainby, at the foot of the northern edge of the North York Moors. Some refurbishment work is expected to be undertaken before a new appointment is made. The house is set in a good-sized garden with mature trees and a large, private driveway with space for a caravan / motorhome if required.
Please see the following link before creating your application form-https://jobs.churchofengland.org/clergycandidatesfaq/clergy-profile/
Focus of activity
The new priest will be expected offer 18 hours of ministry each week, including Sundays, and to undertake the full range of ministerial activities across the parishes to which s/he is licensed, including:
The focus of the ministry will be primarily to ease the transition to a new way of working. We would expect the minister to be actively engaged with the Priest-in-Charge to develop and implement a plan to help the parishes adapt to a new way of working and to the new relationships within the expanded group. This task will require a high degree of pastoral sensitivity; change management experience would be desirable.
In addition to the challenges of creating a new group of churches and facilitating the development of a new team of ministers, the key challenges faced by the parishes are those common to many rural communities – ageing congregations and too few children. Some of the churches in the group are considering new patterns of worship, including perhaps a move to becoming a ‘Festival Church’ ie focussing on having a smaller number of really engaging services during the year at key times in the Christian calendar. Others are wanting to experiment with more informal family services to encourage local families to engage.
IT skills are essential
The Deanery of Stokesley encompasses the southern edge of the town of Middlesbrough, the market towns of Yarm and Stokesley, and a number of large and small villages in the vale to the north of the North York Moors, including Great Ayton, childhood home of the explorer Captain James Cook. The Deanery Leadership Team, led by the Area Dean, Revd Canon John Ford and the Lay Dean, Kate Brown, is currently in the process of developing its Deanery Mission Plan to deliver the Mission statement: ‘Our Mission is to commit ourselves in love and service to God and our neighbours and to co-operate with and encourage one another in proclaiming the Good News of Jesus Christ’. We see the main purpose of the deanery as supporting and enabling Mission and Ministry in Parishes by: mutual encouragement and support; sharing resources and good practices; and building good Relationships and improving communications across the whole Deanery.
The closing date for applications is Monday 14th January 2019.
Interviews are scheduled for Thursday 31st January 2019
Full details about this opportunity can be found in the attached documents.
If you would like to have an informal conversation about this post, please contact the Area Dean (Priest-in-Charge) Revd Canon John Ford (01642 964664; firstname.lastname@example.org) . Alternatively you are welcome to contact the Bishop of Whitby, the Rt. Revd Paul Ferguson (01642 593273), or the Archdeacon of Cleveland, the Ven. Samantha Rushton (01642 706095).
Unfortunately it is not always straightforward for clergy who are nationals of countries outside the European Economic Area to be appointed to posts in the Church of England. The policy of the UK Border Agency is that normally the organisation making the appointment has been able to prove that it is impossible to appoint a person who is a national of a European Economic Area country, before a visa giving permission to work will be issued to a person who comes from elsewhere.
Appointment is subject to a satisfactory Enhanced DBS disclosure.
The Diocese of York is a family of 607 churches and 126 schools in 470 parishes, which extends from Middlesbrough on the River Tees to Hull on the River Humber, and from the east coast of Yorkshire about as far west as the A1 road.
Led and guided by the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, our vision is to be a family of Generous Churches Making and Nurturing Disciples. We are currently working through a Diocesan Strategy that focuses on:
Find out more about us at our microsite: https://jobs.churchofengland.org/dioceseofyork/
Our official website can be found here: http://dioceseofyork.org.uk/