Dear Church Family,
I pray this letter finds you and yours well as you gear up for the summer activities in your household.
As was announced last January, Fr Jim Reynolds is retiring from St Martin. His last Sunday with us will be June 9, 2013. There will be one service only that weekend at 9:30am. Bishop High will be back with us to celebrate Jim’s ministry here. Several people have asked about a retirement gift for Jim. I would like to encourage you all to bring a card for him in which you have written a personal note to him. If you choose to include a gift of some sort, please enclose it in the card. If you would like to make a contribution to a gift from St. Martin’s, please put a check in the plate or in the mail with a note Jim’s Retirement Gift in the memo. Gifts are appreciated but certainly not expected.
A lot of people have also been wondering about the next steps we will face as a parish looking for a new rector. When Bishop High was with us on May 5th, he met with the vestry to address the next steps. He encouraged the vestry to wait until after Jim’s departure on June 9 to begin to look for an Interim. Thankfully, we are blessed to have Amy, Lauren and Henry so that we can move deliberately toward hiring an Interim. We expect that by July, we will be interviewing priests that will be interested in pastoring SMitF through the Call process. We hope to hire an Interim to be onboard in August.
Over the summer, a Call Committee will be formed to begin the process of searching for a new Rector. Bishop High expects that the search process will take 6-8 months from the time the Call Committee is formed. With that time frame, we are hopeful to have a new Rector called by or during the summer of 2014. It is important for us to continue to move steadily and purposefully through the process.
An important aspect of this will be bringing the salary of the clergy up to national standards. SMitF is a very attractive parish because of our low debt load and the blessing we have of young children and youth. One of our drawbacks is the clergy salary that has fallen below national averages. You will hear more about this as we move forward.
Please know that you all remain in my prayers in this time of transition. The clergy, staff and Vestry are committed to continuing the excellence in worship and educational offerings to you and your family. We hope that the Rector Call process will be smooth and we will work diligently to ensure continuity throughout our church’s work in the community. Please join with me in praying for God to guide us throughout this process.
Your Servant in Christ,
Robert Bess, Sr Warden