Precentor of Lincoln

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The Acting Bishop of Lincoln, in consultation with the Dean and Chapter of the Cathedral, is seeking to appoint a Precentor of Lincoln.

Lincoln Cathedral aspires to be a ‘workshop of creativity and a working space for the Gospel of Jesus Christ’. The Cathedral, as a centre of worship and mission, also serves the diverse communities that make up Greater Lincolnshire.

Working collegially with the chapter and wider diocesan community the new Precentor will play a key role in the preservation of excellence in worship as mission both within the cathedral choral tradition and in the development of additional less traditional forms of liturgy to speak to wider contexts alongside forms of online worship within an historic cathedral setting.

For an informal conversation about the post please contact the Dean of Lincoln, the Very Revd Christine Wilson by email - or visit to download an application pack.

Closing date: 28 August 2020. The interview process will take place in Lincoln on Thursday 17 September and Friday 18 September 2020.

Enhanced DBS clearance is required for this post.

Overall Purpose of the Role

As a Residentiary Canon of the Cathedral, the Precentor takes overall responsibility on behalf of Chapter for the organisation and development of the worship and musical life of the Cathedral. The post holder is one of the two residentiary posts funded by the Church Commissioners for whole-time ministry in the Cathedral. As a Residentiary Canon, the Precentor is a member of the Cathedral Chapter, sharing fully the responsibility for all aspects of the Cathedral’s life. Day to day responsibility for particular aspects of that life is delegated to individual members of Chapter and through them to senior members of staff, within a clear commitment to collaborative and collegial practice.

Accountable to: The Dean and the Chapter

Directly Reporting to the post holder:

  • Organist and Master of the Choristers (Director of Music)
  • The Dean’s Verger (for the purposes of liturgical matters and service planning)
  • The Volunteer Sacrist

Main Responsibilities


To share in the responsibilities of Chapter, espousing the principles of excellent and transparent governance, to lead in areas of responsibility and to serve on committees as required.

Specific duties include:

  • Being committed to regular attendance at Morning and Evening Prayer in the Cathedral and to share fully in the liturgical life of the Cathedral
  • Act as Canon in Residence for the prescribed periods; discussed and allocated annually usually in September each year
  • Attend and participate fully in Chapter meetings
  • Share in the preaching and teaching ministry of the Cathedral

Liturgy, Music and Worship

Oversight of the work of liturgy and musical offering in the Cathedral, including:

  • Plan, prepare and oversee the statutory services and many other acts of worship in the Cathedral, including the daily liturgy
  • Ensure breadth and depth of the Cathedral’s music in collaboration with the Organist and Master of the Choristers (Director of Music) and the music team
  • Keep abreast of current liturgical development within and without the Anglican Communion and ensure that the Cathedral models best practice
  • To be ‘first singer’ and to share in the singing of the daily offices
  • Ensure the provision of religious education for the boys and girls of the choir to promote a genuine understanding of the music and to encourage baptism and confirmation
  • Give pastoral support to the Cathedral’s choirs and choir parents
  • Help implement the Chapter’s policies on Safeguarding Management of the Organist and Master of the Choristers (Director of Music), and the staff of the Music Department
  • Plan, oversee and monitor the Music Department budget
  • Work with the chair of the Music Council to raise funds to further the musical and liturgical life of the Cathedral
  • Develop new forms of worship to engage with the changing forms of spirituality in society

Personal Specification:

  • Have been a priest in holy orders for at least six years
  • Be a person of prayer, theologically aware and articulate
  • Have a strong understanding/experience of liturgy and the skill and imagination to turn this into inspirational acts of worship
  • Have a love of church and choral music and an appreciation and understanding of the work of musicians in a cathedral setting
  • Have an ability to support the wider work of music and liturgy in mission, reflecting the breadth of Anglican worship expressed across the diocese of Lincoln
  • Have experience of leading people, and a knowledge of financial systems and budgets
  • Have a keen awareness of safeguarding adults at risk and children in the church environment
  • Be musically competent and capable of singing the priest’s part in the daily offices
  • Have the ability to plan proactively, work to strict deadlines and have good personal and time management skills
  • Have proven pastoral skills
  • Have excellent oral and written communication skills
  • Be able to perform well under pressure with the energy and ability to handle a complex and heavy workload
  • Be able to work with flexibility and imagination
  • Be committed to working collaboratively with other colleagues on Chapter and of providing leadership where appropriate
  • Relate well to people of all backgrounds
  • Be competent in the use of IT and prepared to undertake skills training if necessary

Other Information

  • The Ecclesiastical Offices (Terms of Service) Measure 2009 (Common Tenure) applies to this post
  • An enhanced DBS check and Safeguarding Training will be required
  • Residentiary Canons are paid by the Church Commissioners. From April 2020 the stipend for a Residentiary Canon is: £29,614 per annum
  • Accommodation is provided in a Cathedral property free of rent and council tax
  • A 75% contribution towards heating, lighting, cleaning and reasonable gardening costs
  • Agreed working expenses will be reimbursed in full, upon production of receipts

Thank you for taking time to look at this particular post within the Diocese of Lincoln.

As one of the largest diocese in the country stretching from the Humber estuary in the North to the Wash in the South we are home to a population of just over 1,000,000 people living a variety of different settings from the urban centres of Grimsby and Cleethorpes and Scunthorpe, the City of Lincoln, the market towns, the coastal strip, the new housing developments and the many, many small villages which mark our landscape. All are equally important to us, and all we are seeking to serve in making known the good news of Jesus that has been entrusted to us.