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Fresh Expressions Enabler

Please Note: The application deadline for this post has now passed.


The post-holder will be part of an exciting new team, under the direction of Dr Paula Gooder, and part of the wider Mission and Ministry Stream overseen by the Bishop of Aston, the Rt Revd Anne Hollinghurst. Others in the immediate team will include a Church Planting Enabler, an Intercultural Mission Enabler, a Growing Leaders Facilitator, a Mentor Facilitator and an Urban Estates Mission Enabler, all working closely with our Training and Development Support Team.

Post Introduction

Birmingham is the UK’s second city with the youngest urban population in Europe and one of the most lively and diverse regions. The Church of England Birmingham covers an area of nearly 300 square miles and includes parishes in the West Midlands including Birmingham and parts of Solihull, Sandwell, Warwickshire and Worcestershire.

Right at the heart of what we do there are over 187 Church of England places of worship with an average weekly attendance of 17,000 from a population of 1.5 million. These churches represent a wide scope of Church tradition and breadth of ethnicity.
It is a time of new opportunities and potential in the Church of England Birmingham as we seek to shape ministry for a changing church and world as part of our “Transforming Church - Shaping the Future” vision. We are looking for individuals who will bring imagination and strategic thinking, and who will relish the challenge of exploring new opportunities in response to the particular needs of the Birmingham context. 

Role Responsibility


The primary role of the Fresh Expressions Enabler will be to inspire, train and support individuals and churches throughout the diocese as they find teams of people to join them in setting up Fresh Expressions of varying kinds. They will be expected to be involved in a Fresh Expression themselves (though not in overall leadership because of the time commitment of this).

1. The development of Fresh Expressions across the Diocese

  • Develop a greater appetite for Fresh Expressions in the Church of England Birmingham across all traditions, ethnicities and geographical areas
  • Help clergy, key lay leaders and the Bishop’s staff to identify potential Fresh Expressions leaders and pioneers in their churches and the diocese and create a supportive network for them

2. Training and Support

  • Invest deeply in a small number of key pioneer leaders, helping them learn how to lead and multiply Fresh Expressions and, where possible, to develop deanery Fresh Expression Enablers
  • Support potential leaders as they start new Fresh Expressions
  • Contribute to training across the diocese (particularly with the BAME leadership tracks) to nourish and support Fresh Expressions in all areas of the diocese
  • Advise and support churches who are considering the place of a mixed economy in their parish.
  • Enable the sharing of stories of what is happening to and from the wider Church and encourage prayer for new and established Fresh Expressions

3. The Fostering of Good Communication and Relationships

  • Work closely with the wider Mission Learning and Development team to ensure that Fresh Expressions fits coherently with the other work in the team (especially that of Church Planting).
  • Work with the Mentor Facilitator to create a network of mentors for new and existing leaders of Fresh Expressions
  • Work with the Growing Younger team to help develop Fresh Expressions of Church with a focus on children, youth and families and to find and develop young pioneers
  • Work with others to establish and prioritise Fresh Expressions in underrepresented places and with underrepresented peoples

4. Evaluation and Monitoring

  • Work with the Project Analyst to oversee the evaluation and monitoring of our Fresh Expressions strategy.
  • Introduce and update a database of Fresh Expressions including their progress towards becoming a full expression of Church

The Ideal Candidate

We are looking for someone with a strong Christian faith and a love for God’s Church, who has the following qualities and experience:

  • Passionate about Fresh Expressions of church
  • Able to inspire and influence others
  • Approachable and adaptable – being able to work well with a wide and diverse range of people
  • Experience of building and leading successful teams, with a track record of working collaboratively
  • A willingness to contribute to and work with the other teams in the Church of England, Birmingham
  • An appreciation for, and a commitment to work positively within, the breadth of the Church of England.  Experience and understanding of the Church of England would be desirable.
  • Significant knowledge and understanding of Fresh Expressions theory and practice and practical experience of setting up a successful Fresh Expression
  • Experience of developing and providing training, preferably in a church context
  • Excellent communication skills (written and verbal)
  • Able to facilitate conversations with and between different groups
  • Great networking skills
  • Experience of creating and maintaining databases is desirable
  • A valid driving licence and access to a vehicle for work.

This post is open to lay or ordained applicants. There is a Genuine Occupational Requirement that the post holder is a practising Christian

About Us

Right at the heart of what we do there are 188 Church of England churches and worship centres with an average Sunday attendance of 14,000 from a population of 1.5 million. In these churches are clergy and church-goers representing a wide scope of Church tradition and breadth of ethnicity.

Around 165 paid priests, together with additional self-supporting ministers, offer spiritual and pastoral care in the parishes, together with retired clergy, readers, local ministry teams & other non-ordained ministers.

The ninth Bishop of Birmingham, The Rt Revd David Urquhart, was welcomed to Birmingham in November 2006. He leads the Church of England across the Diocese and has formed a team of senior staff. The Bishop shares his Episcopal oversight with the Suffragan Bishop of Aston.

In the heart of the city, Birmingham Cathedral, dedicated to St Philip, is led by the Dean, The Very Revd Catherine Ogle. It has been a place of Christian worship since 1715 and was designed by the English Baroque architect, Thomas Archer.

The Diocese is divided into two pastoral administrative areas led by the Archdeacon of Aston (The Ven Simon Heathfield) and the Archdeacon of Birmingham (The Ven Hayward Osborne). Each of these areas contains a number of Deaneries, or groups of parishes.

This role is one of many we are recruiting for as part of our vision for mission and ministry. To learn more about this role or others please click here

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