Placements at St Peter Mancroft

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Posted on: Tuesday 10 May 2022

St Peter Mancroft, Norwich

Inviting young people to invest a year in creative engagement with faith, art and the city at St Peter Mancroft Norwich

We are looking to recruit two or three young people, inspired by our vision, and eager to create space for God in their lives and in the life of our community and city.

We have benefitted from all that our previous and current participants have brought to this role, each contributing their own gifts and skills and helping us to think more widely about our mission and ministry.

We are open to the year being shaped by the interests and passions of those who join us. Our context is city centre which requires us to be responsive and light footed in shaping our ministry and adapting to the changing circumstances and new opportunities that are opening up. You are invited to give a year to helping us shape our engagement with the city through involvement in developing our worship, and creative engagement with the wider life of the church.

Participants play a full role in our ministry team, sharing in the leading and planning of worship, including alternative services and the Christmas Eve Crib Service, contributing to our study breakfasts and live streamed reflections

In October 2021 we exhibited Gaia, which was extremely successful and raised Mancroft’s profile as a church that is engaging with cultural and societal issues. Gaia is an impressive six metre globe, created by Luke Jerram using detailed NASA imagery of the Earth’s surface. We developed a programme of events around Gaia to explore the Climate Crisis and environmental issues, including lectures, concerts, science activities, and an open mike busking event.

We are looking to develop a new strand of work exploring ways of responding to contemporary issues drawing on the stories and traditions of the Christian faith that is open and critically engaged. We are passionate about finding ways of telling the Christian story that resonate with the challenges that face contemporary society and will welcome enthusiastic and critical friends in this process.

We are a HeartEdge Hub Church, part of the HeartEdge Network initiated by St Martin in the Fields in 2017. HeartEdge is a movement for renewal, fuelled by people and churches sharing their assets, experience, resource, and need. An ecumenical network, HeartEdge brings together people to share ideas and experience, do theology and develop their church and community. HeartEdge churches are committed to developing the four Cs of:

· Commerce: Generating finance via enterprise, creatively extending mission.

· Culture: Art, music, performance re-imagining the Christian narrative for the present.

· Congregation: Inclusive liturgy, worship and common life.

· Compassion: Empowering congregations to address social need.

As a HeartEdge church we will provide theological support and opportunity for theological reflection by partnering with the Sheppard Scholars Scheme which will involve attendance at monthly sessions of study and theological reflection led by Dr Sam Wells at St Martin-in-the-Fields, on Trafalgar Square in London. These will be a mix of online and in person.

As a civic church Mancroft has a formal role in the life of the city, including the Remembrance Day Service, Holocaust Memorial Day Service, Norwich Pride, and a range of carol services for organisations across the city. We have created an Earth Chapel within the church as a place for people to bring their prayers and thanksgiving for the environment.

We are also exploring more informal and creative services using art, poetry, and literature. Services have included Taizé worship, Iona Community communion and healing services, and have addressed subjects including #MeToo, Christian Aid Week, Climate Change, Migration, and cultural representations of Jesus. We have close links with our neighbouring church of St Stephen’s and the churches of Norwich East Deanery, and there will be opportunities to explore ministry in different settings through deanery networks.

There is scope for working with music, bellringing, story, and the arts, for example as one of our Choral Scholars or Organ Scholars. Building on the success of Gaia we have an opportunity to expand the offer of the church building as a creative space for use by the community, for concerts and art installations. We have a programme of Saturday afternoon concerts and are keen to develop this offering to the city. There will be opportunities to be involved in events planning and delivery, working with our Head Verger and Events Coordinator, Chris Sanham.

We have work to do in interpreting the church for the many visitors and tourists who come into Mancroft that will open up opportunities to think about faith and spirituality. Creative input into this will be welcome.

Gaia has opened up links with schools and we are developing a programme of activities exploring science and faith that can be delivered in schools or in the church building.

We have a reputation as an organisation that takes the climate crisis seriously and this has opened doors for us to work with others. We have made a declaration of a climate emergency, the first church in Norfolk to do so. We are developing our Earth Chapel, working for our silver eco church award, and raising awareness through partnership with campaigning organisations.

We offer a committed and enthusiastic staff team, comprising of the Vicar (Edward Carter), Associate Priest (Fiona Haworth), Curate (Naomi Tuma), Lay Readers (Gill Persicke and Catherine Waddams), and other colleagues including the church wardens, director of music, organist, bellringing coordinator and team of vergers. Edward is Rural Dean in Norwich East Deanery.

Mancroft is a supportive and encouraging place in which to develop new skills and take risks. The Associate Priest will coordinate the scheme and provide support to the participants. We will provide accommodation within walking distance of the city centre, meeting all housing costs, and pay a weekly living allowance of £75, and meeting any expenses associated with your role.

The Diocese of Norwich are offering support through the Diocesan Vocations team, and participants can meet with the vocations outreach officer and, where appropriate, the Bishop’s Officer for Ordination and Initial Training. In addition, a mentor will be available, likely to be a curate, who will meet regularly with participants to offer support and a safe space to reflect with someone unconnected with the running of the scheme in Mancroft.

Read the Creating Space for God role description.

If you are interested in finding out more, please contact Revd Dr Fiona Haworth on Tel: 01603 615297 for an informal conversation or by email: suunjbegu@tznvy.pbz. If you would like to apply, please send a current CV with the names of two referees and a letter of application outlining your interest in this role, and the interests and passions that you bring to it.

How to apply

If you are interested in finding out more, please contact Revd Dr Fiona Haworth on Tel:  01603 615297 for an informal conversation. If you would like to apply, please send a current CV with the names of two referees and a letter of application outlining your interest in this role, and the interests and passions that you bring to it.

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