Work for us
Social Justice and Community Outreach Worker
Union Chapel Church is appointing a core member of our Ministry Team to lead our programme of social justice and community outreach. Building on our existing programme, our church wishes to build awareness and develop projects addressing social, economic, racial, and climate justice from a faith perspective.
The post-holder will organise a series of events, podcasts and contributions to Sunday services. S/he will also organise group activities for our local community as practical responses to the issues raised.
The church has maintained much of its programme during the pandemic but is hoping to expand once more as the situation, hopefully improves. Besides the Christian festivals, the church commemorates Black History Month, Holocaust Memorial Day, Refugee Week, and LGBT+ Pride. We have a programme concerned with the environment called Community of Creation. Each Wednesday we hold our Culture Café for the local community with art work and discussion. Union Chapel has a regular drop in service for people experiencing homelessness and the church is aiming to develop more activities with them. We have recently formed a new project called Gospel Arts and have formed an auditioned group called Union Chapel Voices which will perform at church events, the first being Black History Month.
Learn more about the role:
About Union Chapel
Union Chapel is a historic nonconformist church in Islington with an international reputation as a centre for art, faith and community. We continue to live out our radical Christian faith in these powerful times. The congregation, whilst comparatively small, is experiencing growth and is enthusiastic to share the challenge of our Christian conscience through our worship and by raising awareness of contemporary social concerns.
From the outset Union Chapel was known for music. Our organ is a recently-restored Henry Willis organ which is a world class instrument. The Chapel is now one of London’s most popular music venues, hosting performances from well-known artists. It also has a programme of comedy and film. Events are run on a commercial basis by our own production and events company Union Chapel Directions.
The church established a project for people in crisis and experiencing homelessness, called Margins. Their programme includes a training programme in catering who also provide the catering for events held in the Chapel.
Union Chapel is a Grade 1 listed building of architectural significance. Management of the premises is undertaken by the Union Chapel Project, established by the church not only for day-to-day work but for an extensive programme of conservation. We have a conservation architect on the staff and a fundraising programme to progressively bring the building up to a standard which reflects our concern for the many thousands of people who use it.
The next phase of our development programme will refurbish our Sunday School room. This is a beautiful space with huge potential for further productions and community activities. It is expected that the fundraising target for renovations will be reached shortly and work will be complete by the end of 2022. This will allow for increased community based activities.
You will be joining a team of people enthusiastic for the church’s mission. Rev Vaughan Jones is the Minister in the church. Vaughan has an extensive background of work in the voluntary sector both in homelessness and migration. Our Church Worker, Harley Stapleton Brister manages our social media output and supports the administration of the church’s activities. Our Church Deacons are experienced with theological, financial and management expertise.
We are looking for a person with a strong sense of Christian vocation and a passion for social, economic, racial and climate justice. We want her/him to be part of our community, active in our worship and building our Sunday congregation.
We are looking for someone with imagination, experience and rooted in a theological understanding of prophetic ministry. The successful candidate will share Union Chapel’s liberal, nonconformist commitment to inclusivity in church and community life.
We envisage this as a full time post but understand that someone with exactly the skills and outlook we need may only want to work for four days a week. This can be discussed.
How to apply
To apply please send an up-do-date CV, covering letter indicating your experience and ability to meet the criteria within our Person Specification and why you would like to work for Union Chapel Congregational Church and return it to:
Or post to
Union Chapel Congregational Church (FAO Vaughan Jones)
19b Compton Terrace,
London N1 2UN
Closing date for applications: September 12th 2021
Job title: Social Justice and Community Outreach Worker
Responsible to: To the Church and Deacons’ Meeting with line-management by the Minister of Union Chapel Congregational Church
Purpose of Job: To work within the Ministry Team (Minister and Deacons) to widen the reach of the church into our local community, and networks of Christians engaged in social, economic, racial and climate justice; and develop and manage a programme of engagement reflecting the Church’s commitment to inclusivity, community building and social justice.
Outcomes: The proclamation of the Gospel message of respect for creation and the nurturing of peace and justice through building communities which break down walls of division.
Increased participation in church sponsored events within Union Chapel by church members, volunteers and the wider community.
Greater diversity and integration between different ages, cultures and backgrounds within our worship and the life of the Chapel.
An exciting programme of smooth and efficiently organised events and activities.
Hours: 37.5 hours per week - flexible working needed, including some Sundays.(30 hour week would also be considered)
Programme Management and Development
To work within the Ministry Team to develop an annual programme of community engagement events and activities in line with the church’s priorities for the year and its commitment to social, economic, racial and climate justice.
To participate in leading Sunday worship.
To develop a varied programme of activities for the weekly Culture café
To work with the Margins’ Team in developing group work activities which broaden the Union Chapel’s offer to the local community.
To recruit and supervise sessional staff
To recruit and coordinate volunteers to help run the church events including Culture Café and social justice related activities.
To manage the budget for community related activities.
To attend and contribute to the success of church events.
To liaise with other Union Chapel staff members to ensure appropriate rooms, staff and other logistical requirements are in place, as needed.
Networking and relationship building
To attend church services on a regular basis and engage church members and attendees within the church’s programme.
To develop relationships with relevant partner organisations and professional networks
To work with Union Chapel Project to support them to fulfil their aims in facilitating community activities within the Union Chapel building complex.
To promote chapel activities within local networks, the voluntary sector and local authority services.
To be proactive in engaging with culturally diverse groups to build relationships and include in community activities.
To develop a wider database of contacts within the community, e.g. other local churches and organisations who may be interested in Union Chapel events.
To liaise with the Congregational Federation and other church networks for inclusion in their newsletters and submit prayer requests.
To implement safeguarding policy and inform the Deacons of any legislative changes or breaches of the policy.
To carry out all DBS checks for church staff and volunteers.
To risk assess all community activities and ensure appropriate training is given for volunteers and leaders who help run activities.
To ensure all activities comply with health and safety and other relevant regulations.
To undertake such other duties as may from time to time be required.
Union Chapel is seeking a person with a strong and demonstrable vocation for Christian ministry and mission.
Here are the key areas of knowledge, experience and skill we are looking for. We realise that suitable applicants may not meet them all but should demonstrate a willingness and capacity to acquire them in the course of the work.
Education and knowledge
Relevant undergraduate degree or equivalent (not necessarily in a UK institution).
Knowledge of church networks and relevant faith based organisations.
Awareness of the underlying theological and social understandings behind Christian approaches to social justice.
Understanding and commitment to Union Chapel’s liberal, nonconformist tradition as an inclusive church.
Experience of working cross culturally.
Experience in developing community activities within an inner city context.
Experience of working in a liberal, nonconformist, congregational style church setting.
An understanding of safeguarding and good practice within a community setting.
Ability to plan, manage and deliver targets on time and to manage and contain workload.
Proficient in appropriate Office software.
Self-organising and able to manage a small team of staff and volunteers
Ability to give pastoral support when needed to staff, volunteers, church members and members of the general public.
Ability to manage budgets and financial constraints.
Willingness to work flexibly
Commitment to personal and professional development
A good team worker.