The Presbytery of Westminster

The Presbytery of Westminster, located in the Greater Vancouver Region of British Columbia, is seeking a Full-Time Presbyter of Mission and Vision for a term of up to 5 years.

• The Presbytery of Westminster is a diverse community of congregations and specialized ministries of the Presbyterian Church in Canada seeking to fully engage in the unique possibilities for ministry in the Greater Vancouver Region of B.C. at this critical time.

• After several years of collective discernment around vision and direction, the Presbytery of Westminster has determined that a full-time Presbyter of Mission and Vision would best allow for the vision of the Presbytery around ministry, existing and new, to be realized.

• The Presbytery is seeking a faithful, innovative and transformational leader to help resource and guide the ministry of the presbytery to become a more faithful witness of the gospel of Jesus Christ in its full breadth.

• The Presbyter of Mission and Vision is a new position within the Presbytery and the ideal candidate would exhibit the flexibility required to grow into the position in consultation with the Presbytery.

If you feel called to explore ministry in this innovative and challenging context, please contact Rev. Rebecca Simpson, Convener of Search Committee, at rev [dot] rebecca [dot] simpson [at] gmail [dot] com or phone 1-604-226-8584.

Deadline for applications is October 1, 2019.

Full details below.

Presbyter for Mission and Vision – Position Description

Position Background
Over the past two years, the Presbytery of Westminster (POW) has intentionally examined its past practices and determined that material changes in its activities and goals are necessary if it is to be a good steward of the human and physical resources available to it and its constituent congregations and specialized ministries. POW rejected the “maintenance” model of doing church. POW believes that it must turn its focus toward helping congregations and specialized ministries thrive spiritually and missionally and either reduce or abandon its work that is not aimed toward that vision. This requires discernment and hard work, yet God is able to do great work in the congregations and specialized ministries of POW.

After two specific expert-led visioning days and other gatherings curated by an ad hoc vision team, POW created a Strategic Planning Committee (SPC) comprised of six directly elected clergy and lay leaders. SPC was charged to help make POW a good steward for “Inspiring Leadership for Transformation”: SPC’s mandate was to:

1. Provide leadership in helping catalyse and support new and existing congregations within Presbytery to be healthy and flourishing, which will be evidenced by the congregation’s reaching out to its community in word and deed and participating with the Holy Spirit in the reconciliation of the world;

2. Support specialized ministries within Presbytery to focus their mission and priorities to enhance their vitality;

3. Stress leadership development to assist present leadership to address the adaptive changes needed in our presbytery and to encourage future leaders within our Presbytery;

4. Present to Presbytery goals, priorities, educational opportunities and experiential models that will assist congregations and specialized ministries as they undertake change to be more faithful and fruitful in their ministries;

5. Determine a sensible way to free up resources to advance the vision and mission of the Presbytery and its strategic priorities;

6. Encourage accountability of all for the purpose of living out more effectively our Christian witness; and

7. Prepare a strategic plan for the Presbytery and its congregations and specialized ministries that address the above purposes and goals.

While the SPC has, with POW approval, undertaken various actions with respect to its mandate, the need for greater consistency, skill and focus in those actions have been evident to SPC. SPC believes that it is good stewardship to invest in a Christian leader, with appropriate skills and giftedness, to support congregations and specialized ministries at such a time as this in the life of POW. As such, SPC recommended and POW approved in principle the presentation of a formal recommendation around the creation of a General Presbyter, the position to be henceforth referred to as the “Presbyter for Mission and Vision” for the purpose of bringing transformational leadership to POW and encouraging such leadership in others.

Position Purpose and Duties

The Presbyter for Missions and Vision (PMV) is responsible for faithful, innovative and transformational leadership within POW. The PMV is not an ‘administrator” or a “Presbytery CEO”. Instead, the focus, efforts and results of the PMV will be tied to the mandate of SPC set out above for the purpose of healthy, flourishing and vibrant congregations, specialized ministries and leaders.

The PMV will provide strategic executive and entrepreneurial leadership, oversight, and communication to implement significant changes in POW’s activities and goals generally in accordance with the strategic plan of the Presbyterian Church in Canada and specifically with the six strategic priorities of POW:
1. Engage in biblical theological reflection and education that deepens understanding of and commitment to God, the church, and its place in Christ’s ministry and mission;

2. Engage in evangelism, outreach and discipleship;

3. Embrace a missional culture that nurtures initiative and risk-taking;

4. Discern, prepare and support leaders – lay, youth and young adults and clergy – for faithful and fruitful ministry;

5. Create, encourage and support communities of faith; and,

6. engage in healing and reconciliation between indigenous and non-indigenous peoples.

The PMV’s duties will vary over the term of the appointment based on the present and future health of POW and its congregations and specialized ministries. While PMV’s duties cannot be fully articulated at present, the PMV will be responsible for reviewing and analyzing the present strength of POW and its congregations and specialized ministries, and be responsible for recommending changes to each of those entities for better alignment with their priorities and goals and health of the bodies.

PMV will be expected, as part of the iterative review and analysis process for which the PMV is responsible, to be the main contact for all congregational visitations on behalf of POW. PMV will provide leadership, assistance and guidance to congregations and specialized ministries wherever they find themselves on the “incline-recline-decline” spectrum of organizational life. PMV will be expected to provide assistance (to the level related to giftedness and time constraints) with planting, implementing, renewing, and legacy honouring the vision of congregations. More specifically, PMV will be primarily accountable for the implementation of POW’s adopted goals of the next three to five years, being:

1. starting at least 3 new worshipping communities within its bounds arising out of possible new configurations of existing ministries, which may include amalgamations or the repurposing of existing ministries and their resources, and through the establishment of completely new initiatives;

2. examining the health and vitality of every ministry within its bounds, with the express purpose of seeking to assist each ministry in identifying ways by which the Presbytery can offer support in achieving healthier, more vital outcomes. This process will include a review of the vision, structure and resources of each ministry and will also encourage and equip leadership within the ministries to best serve the vision and desired outcomes;

3. providing up to $200,000 each to Hummingbird Ministries and Camp Douglas to assist these ministries in achieving healthier and more vital outcomes; and,

4. providing a number of immersive learning opportunities annually for all presbyters and congregational leadership and members.

In each circumstance, the PMV is expected to bring together spiritual gifts, wisdom and knowledge gained from past experiences to creatively address these challenges and perform all duties in the spirit of the shared missional purpose of POW. The PMV will combine responsibility and authority with accountability.

Qualifications and Competencies

The successful candidate will be able to demonstrate clearly having the following qualifications and competencies:

Qualifications
● Fosters Christ-centred faith and spiritual wisdom, and approaches ministry joyfully and personably.
● Has an aptitude for, as well as experience in, transition and change management.
● Demonstrates familiarity with, and willingness to learn more about, the mission, purposes and challenges of congregational ministry in the Lower Mainland of BC and POW’s specialized ministries, Hummingbird Ministries (Indigenous Ministries), and Camp Douglas (Christian Camping).
● Is willing to challenge POW, take risks, and face failure to learn and change directions.
● Has strong interpersonal skills and is able to work collaboratively and respectfully with others in exploring options to lead POW through a period of adaptive change.
● Maintains compassion and trustworthiness in leadership and models open communication.
● Possesses a personal and professional attitude of openness, pastoral sensitivity, and respect for persons.
● Is able to bring vision and imagination for faithful innovation.
● Demonstrates skill for complex organizational leadership with an eagerness to tackle hard issues and engage challenging conversations (e.g., theological difference and relational conflict).
● Enjoys and cultivates diversity; is able to encourage discussion of issues with openness, grace, and respect for diverse opinions.
● Seeks God’s justice in all levels of human affairs and encourages the involvement of the church in mission and ministry.

We note, all else being equal, that POW will favour a candidate who is an ordained teaching or ruling elder within the PCC or one of another Reformed denomination

Competencies

Change Agent and Change Manager Collaboration
Communicator Flexibility/Nimble
Interpersonal Engagement Organizational Agility
Spiritual Maturity Strategy and Vision
Willingness to Engage in Conflict Bridge Builder

Physical Requirements

The PMV should hold a valid driver’s license and be able to travel to churches and governing body meetings, both within and outside POW. The PMV must be able to attend denominational events/workshops when appropriate. The position requires the ability to stand, stoop, climb stairs, walk, crouch, sit, and regularly lift objects weighing less than 10 pounds. The position also requires the ability to use the phone and computer, with or without reasonable accommodation. The position requires physical and cognitive endurance; candidate must be able to perform coherently and accurately the duties of the position.

Evaluation and Review

The PMV will be accountable to POW thru the Strategic Planning Committee. That committee will initially conduct a review of performance at the six-month mark. That performance conversation will be repeated in another six months and annually thereafter or as needed.

Term

The PMV’s employment period will be for a period of up to five years.

Compensation

The position will pay compensation at least commensurate with Category A of the Stipend Grid of the PCC. There is flexibility around remuneration depending on the qualifications and circumstances of the candidate. The candidate will be enrolled in the pension and benefits programs of the PCC. Study leave of two weeks a year will be provided and a travel allowance of $10,000 a year will be allocated for the candidate’s work.

If you feel called to explore ministry in this innovative and challenging context, please contact Rev. Rebecca Simpson, Convener of Search Committee, at rev [dot] rebecca [dot] simpson [at] gmail [dot] com or phone 1-604-226-8584.

Deadline for applications is October 1, 2019.