Alert the media! Hire a skywriter! We are now accepting applications for the full-time assistant priest position at St. John's Church in Hingham, Massachusetts. And, while you'd have to work with me, who wouldn't want to serve at the ground zero of Lent Madness?! (Note to Scott Gunn: Archnemesis need not apply)
Why are we hiring? Because my current-but-soon-to-be-former curate/assistant, Noah Van Niel, has accepted a call to serve as associate rector at Chapel of the Cross in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. After serving among us for over three years, this is a terrific opportunity for Noah and an exciting move for the Van Neil family. And it leaves us seeking another rock star priest to join us on our continuing journey of life and faith.
Please take a look at the position description posted below along with some basic background information about the parish. If this sounds like you, please be in touch. If you know someone who fits the description, please forward this link. It would be a terrific opportunity for the right person. There are some incredible lay leaders at St. John's and I'm truly seeking a colleague whose gifts for ministry complement my own.
The one non-negotiable here is the person we're seeking must have a heart for youth ministry along with recent or current experience in this area. Please don't apply if this isn't you.
Position Description for Curate/Assistant Rector
The Episcopal Parish of St. John the Evangelist
172 Main Street
The Rev. Tim Schenck, Rector
St. John’s is a program-sized church in Hingham, Massachusetts, a beautiful coastal town on Boston’s South Shore. A parish with a long history of two full-time priests, St. John’s has experienced rapid growth in recent years. Our previous curate/assistant rector has been called to serve another church after three years among us, and we are eager to find another dynamic priest to help lead St. John’s into its next exciting chapter. The parish is full of creative, gifted parishioners and the potential for developing new ministries and drawing people into deeper relationship with Christ is tremendous.
Parish Mission Statement
We seek to share the Good News of the Gospel through engaging worship, faithful service, and life-long Christian formation while joyfully living out our faith in this community and the world.
St. John’s offers three Sunday services, 8:00 am (Rite I) and 10:00 am (Rite II) and, fromSeptember to June, a contemporary, informal Saturday evening Eucharist at 5:00 pm. Our yearly Average Sunday Attendance is over 250. In addition, there is a weekly mid-week eucharist at 10:00 am on Wednesdays followed by Bible Study and daily morning prayer is said at 8:45 am Tuesday through Friday.
We also hold a number of special worship opportunities throughout the year including Advent Lessons & Carols, Choral Evensong, the Blessing of the Animals, and Mass on the Grass. Liturgically, St. John’s is traditionally “Broad Church.” There is a fine music program, a strong adult choir with paid section leaders, as well as a Junior Choir that sings on selected Sundays.
At St. John’s we value strong life-long Christian formation for all ages. Adult Education programs are offered at various times throughout the year, and we regularly feature foundational courses such as “Episcopal 101” and “Bible 101”. Regular programs include our annual Lenten Series, Wednesday morning Bible Study (following the 10:00 am Eucharist), and a monthly book group. We have recently offered programs on spirituality, the Christian response to poverty, parenting, and a variety of seasonal classes.
Sunday School is a big part of life at St. John’s and we have a vibrant community of families who contribute to helping our youngest members of the parish feel important and cared for. Our teachers are volunteers from within the church who follow a weekly curriculum that teaches pertinent stories from the Bible as well as lessons on liturgy and ethics. Sunday School begins at 9:45 am, and the children join their families in church in time for Communion.
Sunday School starts with three and four-year-olds in the Pre-K class and continues through grade five. There are currently 150 children registered in the program with an average Sunday attendance of nearly 60. Paid daycare professionals staff a nursery for infants and toddlers.
Youth in grades six through twelve have the opportunity to participate in Youth Ministry programs, led by the curate/assistant rector with support from the parents and adults of the Youth Ministry Leadership Team. We have over 75 youth participate in these programs throughout the year. We also encourage young parishioners to participate in worship services as acolytes, junior ushers, choristers, and readers. Confirmation is led by the curate/assistant rector with assistance from lay leaders, and is available for students in 10th grade and above.
St. John’s traces its beginnings in Hingham to 1879 and celebrated its 130th anniversary in 2013. Land for a church building was purchased in 1881, and a wooden structure was completed in 1883. In 1906, the church building was moved across the street from its original location on Main Street. The new site, high on the hill at the corner of Water and Main streets, also contained the current rectory, built in 1789. In 1921 the current church structure, made of Weymouth seam-face granite, replaced the old wooden church.
The parish has had remarkably stable clerical leadership – unusual for any congregation. The Reverends Daniel Magruder (1921-1951), John Gallop (1951-1979), and Robert Edson (1981-2007) served for nearly 90 years combined. After a two-year interim period, the Rev. Tim Schenck was called as the parish’s eighth rector in August 2009.
Since the late 1950s, St. John’s has had a second priest serving as curate/assistant, including the current Bishop of Massachusetts, the Rt. Rev. Alan Gates (1987-1990). Most recently the Rev. Noah Van Niel served in this capacity for three years before being called as associate rector of Chapel of the Cross in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
The Person We Seek
We seek an energetic, gifted, engaging, and creative priest who will share our ministry with passion and devotion. We seek a person who will bring particular gifts and leadership in faith formation for all ages but especially with children, youth, and families. We seek someone who will share fully in the liturgical, pastoral, and administrative ministry with the rector. We seek someone who takes ministry but not him or herself too seriously. In other words, a sense of humor is essential.
Skills, Gifts, and Passions for Ministry
- Passion for the spiritual development of children and youth
- A heart for pastoral care
- Ability to work collaboratively and creatively with other worship, pastoral, formation, and administrative leaders
- Strong preaching skills
- An understanding of his or her particular gifts and the desire to support others in discovering and using their unique gifts for ministry
- Willingness and ability to take initiative and lead while collaborating with other clergy, staff, and lay leadership is vitally important
- Desire to include people of all ages in ministry: children, youth, adults, older adults
- Comfort with the ability to communicate using various technologies and social media
- Ability to plan ahead and be flexible at the same time
- Recognition of the importance of building and maintaining relationships in ministry, as well as building and maintaining programs
Responsibilities and Expectations
- The Curate/Assistant Rector is appointed by and is accountable to the Rector, and extends and supports the Rector’s ministry in the parish, community, and diocese. Under the Rector’s supervision and authority, the Curate/Assistant Rector shares in the responsibilities of pastoral care, faith formation, and administration of the Sacraments. The Curate/Assistant Rector works with other paid and volunteer staff, exercising lead responsibility in tasks and areas assigned by the Rector.
- Take an active role in the Youth Ministry program, leading and designing programs for youth including the Middle School and High School Youth Groups. Assist, advise, and engage with adult volunteers in providing middle school and high school youth with opportunities for formation, fellowship, and service. Lead Confirmation Class for teens with assistance from lay leaders and support from the Rector.
- Serve as staff liaison to the Sunday School and the volunteer Sunday School Leadership Team, offering spiritual guidance, direction, encouragement, Safe Church support, and training to volunteer leaders and teachers. Support parish families in their spiritual lives through online resources, seasonal programs, baptismal preparation, and face-to-face interactions.
- Serve as staff liaison to adult education committee. Facilitate weekly Bible study, work with Rector to develop and teach teaching Inquirer’s, Confirmation, and Lenten series classes.
- Develop small group ministries, many of which could ultimately be led by lay leaders.
- Work with other clergy and lay leaders on the Pastoral Response Team to develop a program to offer excellent pastoral care to our elderly members.
- Share presiding/preaching responsibilities at the Wednesday 10:00 am eucharist.
- Participate in the diocesan New Call program and other diocesan ministries.
- Attend monthly Vestry meetings, submitting a written ministry report one week in advance.
- Participate in regular weekly staff meetings.
- Lead us into new ministry, inspire us to use our imaginations, encourage us to reach out beyond ourselves, and help us to deepen our awareness of God’s presence in our lives.
- Maintain a pattern of life that sets a wholesome Christian example.
- Communicate to the parish via printed newsletter, weekly e-mail newsletter, and other channels.
- An annual ministry review will be conducted with the Rector.
- The Curate/Assistant Rector will work full-time. The Curate/Assistant Rector will be available for pastoral emergencies. Like other professionals, he/she may occasionally be asked to work on customary days off.
Compensation & Benefits
- Total clergy compensation is based upon diocesan norms for a parish of this size and vitality, and the priest’s experience, some of which may be allocated as housing (per IRS guidelines). TCC includes professional expense allowance and provisions for continuing education.
- Four weeks paid vacation.
- Two weeks paid continuing education time
- Eight weeks paid parental leave in the event of birth or adoption of a child.
- Health insurance and dental plan, per Diocese of Massachusetts policies
- Church Pension Group plan.
- Church-owned housing is provided; curate’s residence on Water Street is right next to the church and in walking distance to downtown Hingham and Hingham Harbor.
- Three-year minimum commitment, renewable on an annual basis at the discretion of the Rector and in consultation with the Assistant.
All compensation and benefits are offered according to relevant IRS, Episcopal Church, Diocese of Massachusetts, and parish policies and procedures.
Prior to approval to hire by the Bishop, Rector, and St. John’s Vestry, candidate must pass required Driver’s License, criminal, and credit background checks.
To apply, please send cover letter, resume, OTM Profile, and three sermons to:
The Rev. Tim Schenck at firstname.lastname@example.org (electronic submissions only).