Executive Director

Arlington, MA
Type: Clergy or Lay
Posted Sep 13, 2021
Job Title
Executive Director
Name of church or organization
Bethany House of Prayer
Arlington, MA
Job Description
Bethany House of Prayer
Arlington, Massachusetts
Executive Director SearchAbout Bethany House of Prayer

Bethany House of Prayer has for over twenty years been a center of spiritual renewal, retreat, and refreshment in Arlington, Massachusetts. Rooted in the Episcopal tradition and founded as a companion ministry to the Sisters of St. Anne, Bethany is a non-profit religious organization widely known for offering spiritual direction, retreats, contemplative prayer, worship, and writing groups as well as art exhibits, poetry readings, and hospitality for ecumenical and interfaith groups, and individual quiet days. Our website  www.bethanyhousearlington.org provides more detail about us, including in particular the pages on our History, Values and Statement of Mission.

About the Position

We seek in our next Executive Director someone who has a deep and mature Christian spiritual life, one to whom others naturally turn for spiritual guidance, someone who can envision the many ways Bethany’s mission can evolve and be fulfilled. A commitment to diversity is essential. This person will be the principal representative of Bethany House to those it serves, to its Board of Trustees, to the Colleagues, to donors and grant-making organizations and to the Sisters.  With the Board, the Executive Director has ultimate responsibility for and authority over all aspects of Bethany’s programmatic, financial and operational life.

The Executive Director is assisted by additional part-time staff (currently office manager, bookkeeper, and hospitality manager) and works with 18-20 colleagues who offer spiritual direction, retreat leadership and facilitation of contemplative groups.

Bethany House is responsible for two buildings, which include the office, two kitchens, meeting spaces and 15 guest bedrooms.


Vision and Leadership

  • Collaborate with the Board to develop, implement and monitor strategic plans and financial oversight for Bethany House, in alignment with its mission and values.
  • Provide inspirational leadership and direction to the spiritual directors, colleagues and associates who minister on behalf of Bethany House of Prayer.
  • Cultivate a strong and transparent working relationship with the Board to ensure the ongoing vitality of Bethany House of Prayer.
  • Maintain and deepen the signature spirit of hospitality of Bethany House.

Program and Ministry Development

  • Develop and maintain programs and offerings that are true to Bethany’s mission and responsive to the current needs of the Bethany community and the wider faith community.
  • Seek out ways to engage those who might benefit from Bethany House of Prayer’s ministry but who are not now served by our current offerings.
  • Work collaboratively with Bethany colleagues in planning and executing programs, deploying teams of colleagues and associates as appropriate.
  • Recruit colleagues and associates who are reflective of the constituencies we wish to serve and who bring both familiar and new spiritual gifts, practices and experience.
  • Confer with the Spiritual Director Intake Coordinator as needed and assist in developing practicums for colleagues.
  • Serve in a leadership capacity as appropriate for more extensive Bethany commitments, such as diocesan events, bishop search processes, etc.

Relationships, Communications and Fund-raising

  • Develop and maintain relationships with the Sisters, the Board, colleagues, associates and volunteers; the bishops, other leaders and congregations of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts; other Episcopal, ecumenical and interfaith leaders; and organizations that foster the contemplative spiritual life.
  • Maintain regular communications with Bethany House constituencies through e-newsletters and other means.
  • Develop and oversee the maintenance of the Bethany House web site.
  • With the Board, set realistic goals for and oversee the annual appeal and, when needed, capital campaigns.
  • Maintain relationships with current donors and cultivate new donors.

Operations and Property Management

  • Supervise all business operations required in a small non-profit, including payroll, tax filings, accounts payable/receivable, insurance, periodic income and expense statements, required annual reporting, computer systems, cleaning, etc.
  • Oversee maintenance and improvements of the property entrusted to Bethany’s care (including St. John’s House and St. Gabriel’s House), working with the Sisters and their business manager.
  • Work with staff to provide excellent hospitality services for guest groups and individuals.
  • Oversee Bethany’s calendar, assigning spaces for optimum use and deploying staff as needed.
  • Hire and supervise staff or contract with services to support general operations, financial accounting and guest services.
  • As needed, produce printed or on-line materials to support Bethany offerings.


  • Deeply grounded in the Christian faith, with a regular prayer practice.
  • Open and welcoming to other expressions of faith.
  • Ability to hold what is timeless and eternal, simultaneously being open to respond to the times we inhabit.
  • Sincere desire for the spiritual well-being of others.
  • Facility with discernment, prayerful listening to the Spirit and the wider community to guide the life of Bethany House of Prayer.
  • A spirit of collaboration.


  • Experience in leadership of faith groups and/or individual spiritual direction.
  • Prior non-profit management and employee supervision at both the strategic and operational levels.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage multiple relationships, priorities and interests.
  • Demonstrated experience in developing programs and organizations, bringing them from vision to the vision realized.
  • Demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.
  • Ability to “create a space,” both literally and figuratively, by welcoming all to Bethany House, attending to its spiritual and physical environment and to the environment of off-campus and virtual offerings.
  • Comfort with employing today’s technology to further Bethany’s mission; willingness to learn and adapt to new technologies as they emerge.
  • Knowledge of and respect for the richness of the Anglican/Episcopal tradition, including the monastic life.
  • Master’s level (e.g., M.Div., M.T.S., M.A.) academic preparation in an appropriate discipline preferred.


This is a full-time position requiring easy access to and frequent presence at Bethany House.  Working from home on occasion is possible.

The executive director will have the freedom to determine staffing needs and configuration, as the budget allows.

Inquiries from lay and ordained people are welcome.


The salary will be commensurate with experience.  We offer contributions toward retirement and health insurance.


Send a cover letter and resumé to the Rev. Luther Zeigler, Co-chair, Bethany House Search Committee at bhpsearch@gmail.com.

Type of Commitment
Full Time
Does this job pay?
Application Process
Send a cover letter and resumé to the Rev. Luther Zeigler, Co-chair, Bethany House Search Committee at bhpsearch@gmail.com