Dear Christ Church,
Last Sunday was a glorious day of worship, not only in our two services (that’s not unusual) but in our Parish Meeting. You know God is on the move when a Parish Meeting erupts into worship. It was full of gratitude, blessing, hope, faith and joy; gratitude for the three years of service by Sheri Tolliver and Meghan Scully (outgoing Senior Warden); blessing and hope as we voted in our new Vestry members Evelyn Beauchamp, Mike Murphy, and Paula Wendling; faith and joy as we voted to purchase a permanent ministry center on the downtown Eastside. When Meghan asked for all in favor to say “Ay” the room practically vibrated with the gusto of our affirmation. With every month that goes by I myself feel and witness among others an eager anticipation of God’s gospel-izing work in and through us.
Please welcome David McLaughlin as our new Senior Warden! He is a delight to have on the team, a godly man and leader, the man God has called for such a time as this. And join me in thanking Meghan Scully for her outstanding service as Senior Warden the past two years. Would you uphold each of our new Vestry in prayer? They are David McLaughlin, Jennifer Harger, Blake Mathews, Eric Kaufman, Evelyn Beauchamp, Mike Murphy, and Paula Wendling. Lastly we also invite your intercession as we gather for an overnight retreat this weekend, for God to build this new community of leaders and guide us in holy listening to Him and each other.
One final note: this is a good moment to remind you of the purpose of the Vestry, which we cover in the Membership Class (this is also a good time to invite you to our next Membership Class, Feb. 15!) According to our denominational Canons, the Vestry is “responsible for the temporalities of the congregation and, except where otherwise provided by canon, supports the clergy in the spiritual leadership of the congregations.”
This finds expression in 6 arenas: 1) they are dedicated to prayer and fasting on behalf of the church and her mission; 2) they protect the core values of the church; 3) they exercise gifts of wisdom, discernment and counsel, working closely with the Rector regarding the church and her mission; 4) they have full and final authority for all matters related to the facility and finance of the church; 5) they assist the Rector in guarding the unity of the church, crisis response, and encouraging the clergy and staff; 6) they lead by example in the church through Christian maturity, stewardship and servanthood.
Joyful in this journey with you,