Rector of the Benefice of Lower Wharfedale

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Kirkby Overblow, North Yorkshire

Benefice of Lower Wharfedale, comprising of the Parish of Kirkby Overblow with Sicklinghall; Parish of Pool with Arthington and the Parish of Weeton with North Rigton and Stainburn

The Benefice of Lower Wharfedale is seeking a motivated and creative priest to lead the people of these parishes in their Christian journey, to work with them to enhance the life of their churches, and to embed faith in the heart of their communities. Set in beautiful countryside between Leeds and Harrogate, and accessible to York, and the Yorkshire Dales and Moors, the Benefice comprises three parishes and includes six churches. The people of the Benefice are looking for a priest who will to provide confident priestly leadership, model prayerfulness, encourage discipleship, grow lay ministries and be a sign of grace and blessing in the communities. The parishes have identified six shared values: leadership, faith, compassion, commitment, community and vision. They are looking forward to welcoming a priest who will live among the people, who has the ability to adapt to differing needs, and who will engage in rural and social matters. The new incumbent will assisted by a part-time Associate Priest, a Reader and a benefice administrator.

The closing date is Monday 14th October 2019

The shortlisting meeting will be held on Wednesday 23rd October 2019

Interviews will be held on Thursday 7th November 2019

If you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact the Rt. Revd. Dr Helen-Ann Hartley, Bishop of Ripon, Tel: 01765 601094 or email her PA Mrs Judith Richardson,

The Benefice of Lower Wharfedale comprises six churches which serve villages of varying sizes, scattered dwellings and farms. The area is largely rural with strong connections to the towns and cities of Harrogate, Otley, York and Leeds underpinned by reliable train and bus services. Enjoying the best of both worlds the Benefice is also on the doorstop of the Yorkshire Dales with all the amenities and attractions they have to offer.

The Benefice requires a rector who can:

  • Provide confident priestly leadership, model prayerfulness, encourage discipleship, grow lay ministries and be a sign of grace and blessing in the communities whilst remaining true to our six shared values; leadership, faith, compassion, commitment, community and vision.
  • Live among the people and has the ability to adapt to these differing needs and who will engage in and care about rural and social matters.
  • Be sociable, confident in initiating conversations and keen to participate in village life.
  • Inspire the faithful, develop their discipleship and pilgrimage, and strengthen them as Christians, getting to know the communities and their visitors with imagination and creativity.
  • Encourage and develop lay leadership.

The Benefice require someone who:

  • Has experience of working in clergy and lay teams
  • The Ability to work to a Safeguarding Policy
  • Can engage and give pastoral support for people of all ages; particularly a experience of developing ministry to draw others into missing age gaps
  • Will love of the sacramental and a commitment to the Eucharist
  • Is an effective communicator, teacher and preacher
  • Has proven ability and motivation to work both within and beyond church structures
  • Has the ability to establish a rapport with a wide range of people – Christians and non-Christians – in a variety of contexts
  • Has the ability to to initiate and manage change
  • Has experience with congregations in differing situations, including in villages
  • Has experience of leading mature and thoughtful worship
  • Has experience of working with schools and school-age children

The Diocese of Leeds comprises five Episcopal Areas, each coterminous with an Archdeaconry. This is now one of the largest dioceses in the country and its creation is unprecedented in the history of the Church of England. It covers an area of around 2,425 square miles, and a population of around 2,642,400 people.

The three former dioceses were created in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries to cater for massive population changes brought about by industrialisation and, later, mass immigration. The diocese comprises major cities (Bradford, Leeds, Wakefield), large industrial and post-industrial towns (Halifax, Huddersfield, Dewsbury), a spa town (Harrogate), market towns (Skipton, Ripon, Richmond and Wetherby), and deeply rural areas (the Dales). The whole of life is here, along with all the richness, diversity and complexities of a changing world.

The Diocesan Bishop (The Rt Rev’d Nick Baines) is assisted by five Area Bishops (Bradford, Huddersfield, Kirkstall, Wakefield and Ripon) and five archdeacons (Bradford, Halifax, Leeds, Pontefract, Richmond & Craven). The Bishop of Ripon is the Rt Rev’d Dr Helen-Ann Hartley.

Our vision as the Diocese is about confident clergy equipping confident Christians to live and tell the good news of Jesus Christ. For all of our appointments we are seeking clergy who have a joyful and confident faith which has inspired a track record of church growth, both numerically and spiritually.