Mustard Seed Programme leader

This job has now expired
Diocese of York
Approx £41k - £43k depending on experience

Making Disciples of People in Poverty

The Diocese of York takes in a very diverse area, which alongside the three urban centres of Hull, Middlesbrough and York also includes coastal towns, market towns and sparsely populated rural areas.

We are committed to seeing the body of Christ thrive in all of our communities. More than a quarter of the people of our Diocese live in the 49 parishes facing very high deprivation, and 10% live in parishes that are in the most deprived 1% nationally, all within or around Hull and Middlesbrough. Within Middlesbrough there are two of the three most deprived parishes in the country. There are many other less obvious pockets of poverty across the diocese.

In these places the proportion who attend a Church of England church is far below that for the rest of the Diocese. There is outstanding ministry in many of those places, particularly in meeting practical needs. However, we intend to become much more effective at making disciples who lead others to faith, seeing local expressions of worship take root and indigenous ministry flourish in those urban, coastal and rural communities.

There is an ambitious strategy taking shape across the diocese. Already in place is our Multiply initiative (, investing £5m to plant 80 new worshipping communities focused on those in their 20s to 40s. Existing parish ministry is being re-invigorated through our commitment to Leading Your Church Into Growth. These interventions include significant work in places of deprivation, but without a step change in missional capacity among people in poverty, potential will not be realised.

We are investing in making disciples and growing worshipping communities in places of deprivation through two key interventions. Through 'Stepping Up' we are equipping and mobilising evangelists, leaders, pastors and planters through the development of 'mission apprentices' and 'community ministers'. Through 'Ambassadors we are catalysing a flow of partnership and generosity between parishes in payer, energy and financial giving to change the culture of the diocese.

These interventions will enable a proliferation of 'Community Hubs' as locations offering community engagement with a discipleship pathway, within which new people will be reached and new forms of worshipping community will emerge.

This is where you come in! We need a servant-hearted, energetic and encouraging leader to roll-out and drive the delivery of our programme of work with people in poverty. Working closely with the Director of Making and Nurturing Disciples and the People in Poverty working group, the role involves initiating the Stepping Up development programme; launching the Mustard Seed Ambassadors initiative; developing a vision and resources for Community Hubs, and participating in the creation of the key funding bid.

You will be a Christian wholeheartedly committed to worship and witness, with an understanding of poverty in various contexts and a heart for people in the most deprived parts of our diocese. You will be comfortable working within a Church of England structures and cultures; able to handle complexity and initiate change. You will be highly motivated and well-organised, and adept at equipping and enabling others to flourish.

The Process

To discuss this opportunity further, contact Richard White, Director of Making and Nurturing Disciples, in the first instance by email at

The deadline for applications is midnight on Sunday 4 August 2019.

We aim to contact candidates by the week commencing Monday 12 August 2019.

Interviews for short-listed candidates will be held in Scarborough on Wednesday 4 September 2019.

The Diocese of York

The Diocese of York takes in much of North and East Yorkshire, including the cities of York, Hull and Middlesbrough, and two National Parks. Extending from the River Tees to the River Humber, and from around the A1 road to the incomparable Yorkshire coast, the area is home to around 1.4 million people.

We are a family of 607 churches and 125 schools in 470 parishes, led and guided in their faith and work by the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu. York Minster is our principal church. 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:
  • Reaching those we currently don't
  • Moving to Growth
  • Achieving sustainable finances

More about our strategy can be found here:

Unfortunately it is not always straightforward for people from 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 an appointment has been able to prove that it is possible 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.