Canon Precentor - background information

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1 Canon Precentor - background information Introduction Exeter Cathedral is the seat of the Bishop of Exeter, and a place of prayer, worship and welcome for the people of the city, diocese, county of Devon and beyond. It is also a venue for all kinds of cultural and educational events, and the focus to which the city and county turn in times of crisis, sorrow and joy. The cathedral community has five key priorities: Daily worship and personal prayer Welcome and pastoral care The nurturing of disciples Education and spiritual development Service to the community The Bishop, in conjunction with the Dean, is seeking to appoint a new Canon Precentor. The successful candidate will be a member of the Chapter, playing a full part in the governance of the cathedral, and will be responsible with the Dean for the worshipping life of the cathedral. Exeter The city of Exeter lies in the south west of England, and is the administrative capital of the county of Devon. With a population of around 118,000, Exeter is consistently rated as one of the best places to live in the UK. The city centre itself has an impressive new 235 million retail centre with over 60 new shops and restaurants. It is a safe, student-friendly city with a vibrant culture and relaxed atmosphere. The cathedral is geographically and spiritually at its heart, a fact reflected in the high profile it enjoys in the local media and community. The city has rail services to London (Paddington and Waterloo), Birmingham, Manchester, Bristol, and into Cornwall. It has a busy commuter airport, giving good connections nationwide. Exeter Cathedral Exeter Cathedral is a diverse organisation working, under God, to meet the needs of a wide variety of stakeholders. We are the place of the Bishop s seat (cathedra), the symbol of his teaching and spiritual authority, and the focus for his ministry. We are, therefore, the place where the Diocese of Exeter gathers for important events. We have a major role, too, in the life of the City of Exeter and the County of Devon. We are the place where times of significant celebration or sadness are marked, and so we have close working relationships the major institutions of the County. The Cathedral is a working church, in the Anglican tradition, and a place with a centuries-old pattern of daily worship. We delight in maintaining our part in the ancient traditions and beauties of English Choral Music. We look to help with the spiritual development of those who choose to worship here, and are able to offer a level of pastoral and spiritual care, appropriate to a cathedral, to those who come as worshippers, pilgrims or tourists. The Cathedral is also a major tourist destination in the South West of England and welcomes visitors from all over the

2 world. We have ambitious plans to develop our facilities (which currently include a shop and small café) for all our visitors. Exeter Cathedral is one of the nine Old Foundation cathedrals of England and its architecture dates primarily from the Norman period, although the building has been much restored, including an extensive reconstruction of the chapel of St James, which was completely destroyed by the Luftwaffe in a bombing raid in Notable features of the interior include the magnificent vaulting, misericords, the minstrels gallery, the astronomical clock and the organ. The Diocese of Exeter was formed in 1050 and covers the county of Devon. The Cathedral has long stood within the liberal catholic tradition of the Church of England. This is reflected in the regular pattern of worship and both clergy and congregation are fully supportive of the cathedral s music programme. On Sunday evenings, two new services, Holy Ground and have been conceived to appeal to a new constituency and to grow a new congregation. As the cathedral for the whole diocese, we work hard to ensure that the people of the diocese feel at home here, particularly when the diocese gathers for special diocesan services. We seek to be an inclusive community, where everyone is welcome, although as the seat of the Bishop, we are mindful of our need to adhere to the Canons and guidelines of the Church of England. Recently the cathedral has been through a challenging period, with a Visitation by the Bishop, and the departure of several clergy. We have been immensely grateful to all those who have worked so hard to ensure that our life and daily worship continue to flourish. A new Dean has now been appointed, and it is time to rebuild the stipendiary clergy team. The appointment of the Canon Precentor is a very important next step in this process, in helping to ensure that our worship is of the highest quality and is the foundation on which the whole of our cathedral life is founded. The Chapter Chaired by the Dean, the Chapter is formed of all the Residentiary Canons and up to four other Chapter Canons (appointed by the Bishop after consultation with the Dean, the Bishop s Council and the Standing Committee of the Diocesan Synod). The Chapter consists at present of: Mike Williams (Acting Dean) Jonathan Harris (Chapter Canon) John Endacott (Chapter Canon) Becky Totterdell (Residentiary Canon - and Diocesan Director of Ordinands) Trevor Jones (Chapter Canon) Jenny Ellis (Rowe) CB (Chapter Canon) As already noted, a new Dean has been appointed (Jonathan Greener), who is due to be installed on 26 November After the appointment of the Canon Precentor, a further Residentiary Canon will be appointed early in In 2018, the Chapter will have much to do in re-shaping and re-envisioning the cathedral, and the new Canon Precentor will play an important part in this process.

3 The Music Department The Department consists of: Director of Music Assistant Director of Music Graduate Organ Scholar Liturgy and Music Administrator Lay Vicars (6), Choral Scholars (6), Girl and Boy Choristers (18 of each). Music has been an important part of the cathedral s life for hundreds of years. There has been a choir since the thirteenth century and today it maintains a regular schedule of eight choral services a week (during term time). The music is well supported by the Music Foundation Trust (MFT) which continues to raise more money to help fund the music of the Cathedral. There is also a Voluntary Choir, the St Peter s Singers, directed by the Assistant Director of Music, which sings as and when needed. The Canon Precentor As a member of the Chapter, the Precentor will play a full part in the governance and daily life of Exeter Cathedral. He or she will take the lead role in the design and implementation of our worship, and in managing the staff and volunteers who help deliver this. The Precentor also takes principal pastoral responsibility for the choir and the bellringers. There is an expectation that all the Residentiary Canons will attend the cathedral for morning and evening worship, unless it is their day off or they are working elsewhere. We hope our new Precentor will be able to sing (if not necessarily having a solo voice). Wider musical ability coupled with an appreciation for a broad range of musical styles is a distinct advantage in the creation of our worship and in building good relationships with the choral foundation. To facilitate our choral worship, it is usual for the Precentor to take holidays outside the choir terms, and to ensure that musical cover is in place while the choir is away. Housing The Canon Precentor will live in an attractive house in Cathedral Close, overlooking the cathedral. There is a study in the house, but the Dean and Residentiary Canons will work much of the time from the Cathedral Offices, since this provides a clerical presence on the cathedral site, and allows the clergy to play a full part in the day-to-day running of the cathedral. Further information For any further information, or an informal conversation about the role, please contact Bishop Martin Shaw, Acting Precentor, on or the Dean-Designate, Jonathan Greener, on (though preferably not between 21 October and 2 November when he will be out of the country). Application Please apply on the official Application Form, and note that the closing date for applications is 7 November at 10am. The interviews Interviews will take place in Exeter on 27/28 November. The first day will provide an opportunity to view the house, to attend Evensong, and to meet members of the choir and the Cathedral Chapter. On the Tuesday, you will have a meeting with the Director of Music, and the

4 opportunity to demonstrate your singing ability. There will be a formal interview with the panel, consisting of: The Bishop of Exeter The Dean The Director of Music Jenny Ellis (Chapter Canon) The Acting Precentor These notes should be read in conjunction with The cathedral website (www.exeter-cathedral.org.uk) The role description and person specification The Cathedral Constitution and Statutes The 2012 report from the Theos think tank, Spiritual Capital: the Present and Future of English Cathedrals, gives important insights into contemporary cathedral life.

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6 Canon Precentor - Role Description The general duties of a Residentiary Canon include: Attending the Daily Liturgy and Offices Preaching and leading worship, as set out in the published rota Playing a full part in the life of the deanery and diocese (without compromising the worshipping life of the cathedral) Full participation (with Trustee responsibility) in the governance of the cathedral as a member of Chapter Departmental leadership and management responsibility In addition the Canon Precentor will: 1. Take the lead, with the Dean, in discerning appropriate patterns of regular worship for the Cathedral, and implementing these. 2. Be responsible day to day for the content of Cathedral services, the production of Orders of Service and making practical arrangements to deliver the same. Exeter Cathedral is used to and expects imaginative liturgies to reflect the seasons of the Church s Year or the special occasion for a service. Hymns are chosen in conjunction with the Director of Music. 3. Be responsible for the many special and diocesan services throughout the year and preparing creative orders of service to meet their needs; working with the Liturgy and Music Assistant in liaising with the Bishop s Office, and the various groups and organisations to make the necessary practical arrangements to enable those liturgies to take place. 4. Take a lead in the delivery of worship, and in preparing and briefing the clergy. A Precentor who can sing will normally officiate at Evensong. 5. Be responsible for the various clergy rotas. 6. Lead and give strategic direction to the Music Department on behalf of the Cathedral. This includes line-managing the Director of Music, and supporting the Director of Music in line-managing the Assistant Director of Music and Organ Scholar; providing a high level of pastoral care for the choir and choir families; ensuring that Safeguarding and Safety legislation is properly implemented; accompanying the choir on their outings (choral and social) and on tour. 7. Further the Cathedral s relationship with Exeter Cathedral School from where our choristers come. 8. Manage the Virger Team in their liturgical work and oversee the sacristy. 9. Take responsibility for and provide pastoral care for the servers and ringers.

7 10. Work with those who are delivering the Holy Ground and services to provide support, and to develop these services appropriately. 11. Lead the Cathedral Community in a Worship Audit, as required by the Bishop in his Charge following his Visitation. 12. Be a member of, and/or attend Informal meetings of the cathedral clergy and staff The Matthew Locke Society The Exeter Cathedral Old Choristers Association The local RSCM Committee 13. Work with other members of Chapter to ensure the cathedral is actively engaged with the local community through civic, charitable and other links. 14. Alongside Chapter colleagues, foster good relationships with clergy and parishes across the diocese. 15. Engage with colleagues from other Cathedrals by attending the Precentors Conference, and with other national liturgical bodies like Praxis, represent Exeter Cathedral, and participate in the sharing of best practice. The Canon Precentor will: Be appointed under Common Tenure with the stipend of a Residentiary Canon Participate in the Diocesan MDR process Have a house provided in Cathedral Close Have expenses of office reimbursed from the Cathedral Usually take holidays outside the choir terms Usually work from an office in the West Wing Receive administrative support from the Liturgy and Music Assistant Maintain a computer diary which is accessible to colleagues This role description should be read in conjunction with the Cathedral Constitution and Statutes October 2017

8 Canon Precentor - Person Specification The successful candidate will be a person who: EXPERIENCE Essential at the time of installation has been six complete years in holy orders Has the ability to sing liturgically (even if not a natural solo performer) has musical ability, experience and interest, together with knowledge of the Anglican choral tradition and repertoire is sympathetic to, and comfortable with, Exeter s ecclesiastical and liturgical tradition has experience of working with Common Worship in a variety of contexts is familiar with, and appreciative of, the Book of Common Prayer Desirable has pastoral experience in a wide variety of situations JOB SKILLS has an interest in the design and delivery of traditional and creative liturgy pays attention to detail and presentation of written texts is a good communicator both orally and on paper is a team player and enjoys working with and encouraging colleagues is resilient with enough self-confidence to work in a team, without feeling threatened by others is able to contribute to the development and delivery of a strategic vision does not shy away from conflict, and is willing to make tough decisions is at ease with the high profile role of a cathedral is an efficient administrator and computerliterate has the aptitude to manage and develop others has a driving licence and own transport has an interest in the relationship between theology and liturgy

9 PERSONAL is committed to personal and common prayer has a lively faith, which is readily articulated is able to support equally the sacramental ministry of men and women is open to new people and ideas and willing to learn and change has an ability to gain and maintain the confidence of diocesan and secular leadership October 2017

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