Ministries Development Staff (MDS) staffing


The 2019 General Assembly instructed The Ministries Council to review and address the resource implications of Ministries Development Staff (MDS) and ‘to implement a process for allowing the maximum sustainable number of MDS posts to be filled’. 


Over the summer a working group of Council members and staff from Priority Areas, Presbytery Planning Task Group and Partnerships & Development and Human Resources have been working on the new MDS Staffing Request process.


A summary of the process is as follows:


  • A Staffing Request Approval Panel has been scheduled to meet every two months if MDS funding is available to be recruited to and will consist of three Council members, Council staff and a representative of HR. The full process and schedule of dates are detailed in the attachments.

  • All applications must be sent from the Presbytery email address with the approval of the Presbytery Clerk for consideration of approval. All correspondence thereafter will also be sent to this email address.

  • The essential documents (three of them) must all be submitted at the point of application. This will ensure all necessary preparations are in place to move the recruitment to the next stage of advertising the post, should approval be granted.

  • All applications must be sent to the email address This will ensure all applications are processed consistently and clear records can be kept.

  • Please read through the Guidance Notes and FAQs before making an application.

  • We welcome feedback and FAQ suggestions and these should be sent to the same MDSApproval email address.

  • There are plans for this process to be hosted on the Ascend website. This is currently a work in progress.

  • The process will be adapted and developed as required as it is rolled out.

You can download the relevant guidance and application forms below-

MDS Staffing Request - Guidance Notes

MDS Staffing Request Flowchart – Appendix 1

Key Dates – Appendix 2

MDS Staffing Request Form – Appendix 3

Job Description & Person Specification – Appendix 4

Pre-Appointment Health & Safety Check Sheet – Appendix 5

MDS Staffing Request Process FAQ – Appendix 6