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We are looking for a Virger; someone who is passionate about welcoming visitors to St Paul’s Cathedral; whether they come to attend worship or to view this important, historic landmark.
The Virgers support the delivery of mission and ministry at the Cathedral. They prepare for and assist with services alongside the Cathedral Clergy including administering the chalice at services of Holy Communion (Eucharist). They provide point of contact for visitors attending services or requiring pastoral support. The Virgers also work closely with other teams from across the Cathedral to ensure safe, smooth running of events and services and the proper care of the Cathedral fabric and collections.
We would like to hear from you if:
- you are a communicant member of the Church of England;
- you have a basic knowledge of the liturgy of the Church of England and an appreciation of the different worship traditions;
- you are able to provide a welcoming, caring and compassionate approach when dealing with all visitors, regardless of their reason for visiting the Cathedral;
- you are reliable and calm under pressure, with the ability to use own initiative;
- work collaboratively and are flexible in approach; and
- you have an excellent eye for detail, which you will need in all aspects of the role.
In return you’ll find we are a welcoming place to work and we each take responsibility for our part in the Cathedral’s work, looking after St Paul’s for the next generation.
- Our holiday allowance is 33 days including bank holidays
- Our pension scheme allows for up to 7.5% employer contribution
- And as you might expect we have life assurance of four times basic salary and an employee assistance programme.
We are an inclusive employer and welcome candidates from all backgrounds.
The Dean’s Virger and Deputy Head Virger manage the Cathedral floor on a day-to-day basis, assisted by a team of Virgers in delivering the Cathedral’s mission and ministry. The role of the Virger, therefore, is to:
- prepare for and assist at services in collaboration with the Cathedral Clergy;
- assist and support other departments at all other events taking place in the Cathedral;
- be the link between worship, events, sightseeing and fabric matters, ensuring that the ethos of the Cathedral and the welcome the Cathedral provides is visible in all;
- be a warm and welcoming presence to worshippers, visitors, clergy, VIPs and those in need;
- take responsibility for those areas delegated by the Dean’s Virger and ensure the Dean’s Virger is fully informed of the delegated area.
- Being a presence within the Cathedral to respond to the needs of clergy, staff and visitors.
- Working with clergy and other departments towards a common shared aim.
- Reporting regularly to the Dean’s Virger and keeping the Dean’s Virger properly informed, especially in relation to those areas delegated by the Dean’s Virger or in his absence the Deputy Head Virger.
- Taking a role as leader of the team when acting as the Nominated Person in the absence of the Dean’s Virger and Deputy Head Virger.
Ministry of Welcome
- Supporting the Cathedral clergy, staff and volunteers, in providing a place of welcome to all.
- Supporting the role of the Pastoral Team on the Cathedral Floor.
- Being the link between staff and clergy in ministering visitors’ pastoral matters.
- Providing a pivotal role in safeguarding children and vulnerable adults, working closely with the Chaplaincy team.
- Working with clergy in maintaining and updating the Cathedral intercessions list.
Worship and Ceremonial
- Assisting in the delivery of the practical elements of all services and events in a spirit of collaboration with all those involved.
- Working collaboratively with the Liturgical Office and other departments in the execution of all services and events.
- Preparing for and assisting at all services held in the Cathedral.
- Administering the chalice at services of Holy Communion (Eucharist) for which a licence is required from the Dean and for which the administrant must themselves be a communicant member of the Church of England.
- Working with the Collections department in the care and maintenance of Cathedral property and its loans.
- Maintaining the tidiness and condition of furniture, vestments and linen.
- Maintaining records and historical particulars appropriate to the Virgers’ Department.
Health and Safety
- Ensuring that all policies are adhered to.
- Ensuring that the Accident Book is properly kept.
- Keeping the Clerk of Works informed of Health & Safety matters as they arise.
- Together with the Security team, ensuring the proper security of the building while on duty and at handover.
- Implementing emergency procedures in conjunction with the Visitor Experience team.
Delegated Areas of Responsibility as allocated to Individual Virgers by the Dean’s Virger
Laundry and Linen
- the good order of all choir and clergy cassocks and cinctures and the good order of all clergy and choir surplices and linen;
- the laundry of all altar linen, and for liaising with outside laundry firms regarding it;
- ensuring that all clergy, choir and altar items are presentable at all times;
- keeping an up to date record and annual audit of all linen in stock and for carrying out regular stock checks;
- Responsible for the department’s proof reading of all in-house published documents, including service papers, music lists and leaflets.
Supplies and Consumables
- for the ordering and safe storage of all consumable and sacristy supplies;
- keeping an up to date record and annual audit of all supplies in stock and for carrying out regular stock checks;
- ensuring that all consumables and sacristy supplies are ordered well in advance for Christmas and Easter and Festivals and Special Services as required.
Vestments and Plate
- the good order of all Cathedral Vestments and Plate, liaising over repairs with the Collections department and the Cathedral Embroiderers, in consultation with the Dean’s Virger and the Sacrist.
- ensuring records of plate and vestments are kept up to date, and liaising with the Collections department.
- working with the Collections department over loans of Cathedral Vestments and Plate;
- ensuring the smooth running of the audit by Central Chancery of all Vestments, furnishings and plate belonging to the Order of the British Empire, the Order of St Michael & St George and the Imperial Society of Knights Bachelor;
- providing tours of the Vestments and Plate in consultation with the Dean’s Virger.
- Responsible for maintaining and updating the weekly and monthly reports, Special Service Archive filing system.
- Updating all service check lists and the Department’s Handbook and ensuring that these represent an accurate record.
The Ideal Candidate
- A communicant member of the Church of England.
- Experienced at the liturgical aspects which make up a significant part of the Virgers’ role, and a basic knowledge of the liturgy of the Church of England and an appreciation of the different worship traditions.
- A sympathy with and a willingness to work within the ethos of the Cathedral.
- Able to support the Dean’s Virger in developing their vision for the Virgers’ team, and lead the team / take responsibility and to use own initiative in the absence of the Dean’s Virger or Deputy Head Virger.
- A warm, caring, supportive and compassionate approach when dealing with all individuals, being able to separate the person from the behaviour, and to handle disruptive behaviour in an appropriate manner whilst always showing respect for the person.
- A positive, cheerful nature with an ability to work effectively and collaboratively and to build strong and effective relationships.
- A good, clear and confident communicator, not only among the Virgers’ team but with all departments and personnel throughout the Cathedral.
- Professional and accountable approach to work with excellent attention to detail and to provide a high standard of support.
- Able to work for a number of different clergy and senior lay staff at different times, while providing the same professionally high standard of support.
- Excellent organisational skills. A proven ability to plan, prioritise and manage workloads and to meet deadlines.
- Calm, practical and flexible approach. Able to manage demands under pressure and to handle last minute changes with a positive, can-do attitude.
- Reliable, discrete and resilient.
- Ability to work as part of a team.
- Good IT skills.
- Able to work at heights, climb stairs and lift and carry.
Introduction to working at St Paul’s Cathedral
St Paul’s is an equal opportunities employer and holds together a very diverse set of activities and aspirations. It is the Cathedral of the Diocese of London and the seat of its Bishop, a national church and an international spiritual focus, a space for worship and holiness, a place of learning, debate and challenge, an icon of resilience in the face of adversity, an architectural heritage centre, a partner in the City of London, and a commercial enterprise. In addition to offering acts of worship throughout the day, St Paul’s is open for prayer and sight-seeing seven days a week.
St Paul’s Cathedral seeks to enable people in all their diversity to encounter the transforming presence of God in Jesus Christ.
The Cathedral is a community of worship and mission with a particular role in supporting the Bishop of London in her work across the diocese and beyond.
We are above all a living Christian church, inspired by the love of God in Jesus Christ to offer welcome, prayer and learning.
Together, we are entrusted with the outstanding building and the iconic dome, the fruit of human skills offered to the glory of God. We will curate and fashion the building on behalf of current and future generations as a sign of hope for all.
We will bring together all our resources to make a tangible difference to people’s lives, shaping policy and attitudes to tackle social injustice, specifically in the area of young people’s mental health.
Welcoming – We all offer a warm inclusive welcome to everyone: our colleagues, volunteers and each one of our visitors.
Responsible – We are people of integrity, each responsible for part of the whole of the Cathedral’s work, looking after the Cathedral for the next generation.
Engaging – We seek to engage everyone in our mission, at the Cathedral, within London and across the world.
Nourishing – As a community we work together in a learning environment, aiming for the highest possible standards in everything we do whilst acknowledging that we cannot do everything.