Chaplain to the Bishop of St Albans

Posted 16 days agoExpires in 2 days
St Albans
£29,680 p.a

The Diocese of St Albans

Diocese of St Albans consists of the counties of Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire and part of the London Borough of Barnet. The population is some 1.9 million, and the total electoral roll number is approximately 35,000. The Bishop of St Albans has overall responsibility for the Diocese. He is assisted by two suffragan bishops, the Bishop of Bedford and the Bishop of Hertford, who in turn are assisted by the Archdeacon of Bedford and the Archdeacons of St Albans and Hertford. There are twenty deaneries and the Diocese has 336 parishes, of which about one third are rural, 201 benefices, 400 churches, 238 stipendiary clergy, over 50 self-supporting clergy, 160 clergy with Permission to Officiate and over 250 Lay Readers. There are 138 church schools and academies in the Diocese. The parishes in the Diocese have begun a fresh expression of church and have new worshipping communities linked to them.

Living God’s Love

This is the vision of the parishes, church schools and chaplaincies in the Diocese. This vision is grounded in our love of God and love of neighbour, flowing from God’s love for us. Its three priorities are:

Going Deeper into God: Transforming Communities: Making New Disciples

Using Mission Action Planning, we are developing confident and outward-looking mission and evangelism, leading to spiritual and numerical growth, the transformation of our communities and the growth of God’s kingdom in the world. The Diocesan Synod (the elected decision making body of the Diocese) and the Bishop’s Council, as the Standing Committee of the Synod, have a key role in formulating diocesan policy. The statutory work of the Church and support to the parishes is provided by the staff of the Diocesan office, located at Holywell Lodge in St Albans. Teams of officers are responsible to three separate bodies, which report to the Bishop’s Council and are ultimately accountable to Diocesan Synod:

  • The Board of Finance
  • The Board of Education
  • The Board for Mission and Ministry

Reaching New People

Under the umbrella of Living God’s Love, we have made a commitment as a Diocese New Worshipping Communities through an exciting project called ‘Reaching New People’ (RNP), funded in part by a Strategic Development Grant. This seeks to make new disciples of Christ and to grow flourishing Christ-centred churches. There is currently a comprehensive programme of vision days and training events. Care is also taken to acknowledge, value and accommodate the range of traditions present in the diocese through inherited and established forms of church. Our ‘Flourishing Churches’ work covers this important area.

The Bishop of St Albans is seeking a Chaplain who is pastorally sensitive, theologically able and liturgically literate as well as being socially aware and administratively competent to support him in his episcopal ministry in the diocese. The successful candidate should also have excellent interpersonal skills, genuine emotional intelligence, be able to deal with delicate and sensitive matters in a professional manner along with a high level of IT competence. They should also be able to work in a close knit team and be at ease in a role that is self-effacing with little public recognition.

If you would like to discuss the role further please contact Andy Crooks, the current Bishop’s Chaplain on or 01727 229076

The closing date for applications is Monday 4 December 2023 at midday.

Interviews will be held on Monday 11 December 2023.

The main responsibilities for this role are:

The ministry of the Bishop’s Chaplain is to support and facilitate the ministry of the Bishop of St Albans, working as a member of a small, dedicated team.

The person appointed as Bishop’s Chaplain will:

Resource and support the bishop in his ministry

  • Act as a sounding board and be a Christian companion, intellectually and theologically, to the Bishop.
  • Liaise on behalf of the Bishop in relation to his diocese and public-facing role, including liturgy, planning, IT provision, transport and scheduling.
  • Occasionally drive and act as liturgical chaplain at services such as licensing’s, ordinations and confirmations.
  • Administer and oversee the correct and timely handling of complaints and grievances, including those under the Clergy Discipline Measure, consulting closely with the Diocesan Registrar as needed.
  • The Bishop is the Convener of the Lords Spiritual in the House of Lords. The Bishop’s Chaplain is not required to take a major role in this aspect of the Bishop’s ministry, but there will be occasions he/she will need to liaise with his parliamentary researcher, and staff at Church House, Westminster and the Palace of Westminster.

Coordination of the work of the Bishop’s Staff

  • Act as secretary to the regular Bishop’s Staff meeting, developing and preparing the agenda for meetings, attending, contributing and taking the notes, monitoring the decisions made in meetings and progress-chasing agreed actions.
  • Attend meetings of the Bishop’s Council and Diocesan Synod as required.
  • At the Bishop’s request, attend and contribute to meetings as the Bishop’s representative. These may include, e.g., core groups, conference planning teams, event coordination groups and various diocesan committees.
  • Planning and overseeing occasional residential meetings of the Bishop’s staff.

Assist the Bishop in the support of the clergy of the diocese

  • Liaise with the clergy and lay leaders of the Diocese as necessary and act as a representative and ambassador for the Bishop throughout the Diocese and beyond.
  • Draft letters and answer questions, liaising with other members of the Bishop’s Staff, with a particular responsibility for complex matters requiring research.
  • Manage the personal records of clergy and ensure compliance with the provisions of GDPR.

Office duties as a team member at Abbey Gate House

  • Work close with the Bishop’s PA and the Secretary to the Bishop in maintaining a welcoming, efficient and responsive office, with particular regard to clergy and public enquiries, data protection and GDPR, record keeping, licensing and authorisation matters, ecumenical liaison and diplomatic/civic engagement.
  • Working hours are 9am to 5pm weekdays at the Bishop’s office, working flexibility where evening and weekend duties are required.
  • Working closely with the Bishop’s PA, oversee the house, estate, plant, leased vehicle, security and other material and practical elements associated with the Bishop’s ministry.

To carry out other duties from time to time as required by the Bishop.

The ideal candidate should have:

The following qualities are desirable:

  • A love for and appreciation of the diversity and breadth of the Church of England.
  • A sense of humour which can be retained under pressure.
  • Ability to carry heavy workloads, work to tight deadlines and prioritise.
  • Loyalty, discretion, and trustworthiness.
  • The ability to deal appropriately with highly sensitive and confidential information.
  • A willingness to ask tough questions and address challenging situations.
  • Significant understanding of safeguarding matters.
  • Emotional intelligence with an attendant ability to embrace and appreciate diversity.
  • Established pastoral and listening skills.
  • The ability to prioritise and organise oneself and others.
  • Communication and interpretive skills, verbally and in writing

In addition, the post-holder will need to

  • Be able to travel. A car driving licence is essential and a willingness to drive the Bishop’s car when needed and use their own car for work when necessary.
  • Be available outside normal working hours to respond to urgent or immediate issues.
  • Be available to attend events outside normal working hours on a ‘time off in lieu’ basis.

Non-clergy staff will be automatically enrolled into the Pension Builder 2014 Pension Plan (PB2014) in line with legislation unless they choose to opt out. Clergy already in the Church of England Funded Pensions Scheme (CEFPS) will have the option of either remaining in this scheme or joining the PB2014 scheme.

Bishops Staff have an income protection insurance arrangement. To be eligible for cover under this policy an employee must be a member of the (PB2014) scheme. Please note that insurance cover is not necessarily automatic, and that underwriting may be required by the schemes in some instances (for example if you do not join the scheme at the first available opportunity or opt out of the scheme and subsequently re-join). Cover will be subject to any terms and conditions laid down by the insurance company.

As we are a member of the Armed Forces Covenant, we welcome applications from those who have served in our Armed Forces and their families

We are committed to building a culturally diverse workforce. As part of this commitment, we welcome applications from people, regardless of their background. As a Disability Confident committed employer, it is important to note that there may be occasions where it is not practical or appropriate to interview all disabled applicants who meet the minimum criteria* due to high volume. We limit the amount of interviews conducted to five applicants per open post we advertise.

*Where applicable depending on post requirements.