The Benefice of Hellifield and Long Preston - Priest in Charge

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Office Holder

The Bishop of Leeds and Christ Church Oxford (patron) are looking to appoint a Priest-in-Charge to the parishes of Hellifield and Long Preston. These villages on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, near Settle and Skipton, have close connections to farming and the rural way of life, and also excellent communications by road and rail. The two parishes are looking for an experienced, energetic and enthusiastic priest who will enable them to fulfil their mission of “sharing God’s love at the heart of our communities”. The churches have different liturgical traditions, which are both valued and respected. They offer a warm welcome, active and engaged lay participation, and the support of retired clergy.

This is a 0.5 post.

The closing date is Wednesday 17th November 2021

The shortlisting meeting will be held on Monday 22nd November 2021

Interviews will be held on Tuesday 30th November 2021

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,

We are seeking someone who will:

  • Plan and lead worship in the three churches in the benefice using available resources (people and resources) to ensure that high quality worship is maintained
  • Conduct occasional offices, Saint's Day and other special services throughout the year
  • Lead the spiritual direction of our parishes, sharing God's love at the heart of our communities
  • Steer Bible study groups, Lent study group and other teaching opportunities for members of both parishes
  • Take the lead in the provision of pastoral care to all within the community including those confined to home. Provide the sacraments to those who wish to receive them
  • Work in partnership with Churchwardens, retired clergy LLM, lay worship leaders and the congregations of both churches to build effective teams for worship and mission. Delegate where appropriate
  • Chair the two PCC's and explore opportunities for joint working to strengthen the mission of the church in both villages
  • Be a visible presence in both villages, and interacting with all age groups, participate in fund-raising events as appropriate
  • Work in and with our local schools, co-ordinating and building a team to deliver weekly assemblies in Long Preston VA CofE School, Open the Book in Hellifield Community Primary School and welcoming the children into church for services during the year
  • Actively encourage younger people, including families, single people and children, but also those in their 40's and 50's, to Christ and to church, whilst valuing the contribution of the existing congregations
  • Explore ways of building on the remote worship which has been taking place in the pandemic
  • Contribute to the mission and ministry with the wider Diocese, Episcopal Area and Bowland & Ewecross Deanery. Work with fellow Priests as part of the Deanery Clergy Chapter

Our new Incumbent will be:

  • A person of prayer and spirituality who can engage congregations of all ages by their teaching and preaching
  • A pastor who will be approachable and care for all in the two villages regardless of whether they are churched or not
  • A person who is comfortable leading worship in a variety of styles both formal and informal
  • A leader who can work with PCCs and others across the parishes to develop strategies for church growth
  • A delegator who can build on the skills of the teams within the parishes and develop them further
  • Someone who can be a visible presence in our schools and communities and build on existing networks

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.