Interim Rector’s Report to the Congregation
As I write this report, I have just crossed the one-year mark as your Interim Rector. In many ways, February 12, 2018 seems like a very long time ago now, as so much has happened in the life of this congregation since I first started sharing this part of the journey with you. For instance, since I came just over a year ago now, we have done 11 baptisms, 6 confirmations, 5 weddings, and 29 funerals here at the church. But those statistics don’t fully indicate the stories of the people who are represented by those numbers. Each one of those baptisms, confirmations, weddings, and funerals means that our life as a community has been changed, and we are a different people than we were a year ago at this time. In the meantime, new people have joined our numbers and others have left this community. Our church staff continues to evolve, with people coming and going from their positions on a regular basis. This is all a part of the rhythm of parish life.
During the past year, so much has happened in the transition process as well. The parish Profile Committee began and completed their work; a Search Committee has been named, and has met regularly in preparation for receiving a list of candidates from the diocesan office; the rectory is being prepared for new occupants; the Vestry, Finance Committee, Property Committee and Endowment Committee have faithfully executed the duties of their respective offices to prepare this congregation both for the work of today as well as the future God has in store for us.
Of course, the changes of the past year are but a harbinger of the changes which await this congregation in the coming year. By God’s grace, at this point in 2020, a new rector will be in place, and the next great chapter in the long and storied history of the Church of Our Saviour will begin to unfold. I don’t know what that future will look like – none of us at COS does – but I am confident that God has a vision for this community, and that our task is to discern that divine vision, and then to align ourselves with that vision. At the end of the day, it is the wrong question to ask, “What do I want for COS?” or even “What do we want for this church?” The much more difficult – and much more profound – question to ask is, “What does God envision for us, and how do we best live into that holy dream?”
This work of discernment isn’t limited to times when a congregation is in transition, and it isn’t limited to congregations. This really is the work which each one of us needs to be doing on a regular and consistent basis, asking, “What is God’s dream for me… for my family… for my church… for my community?” – and then acting to make that dream a reality. My prayer for you – individually and as a community – is that you will live more and more each day into the persons, and into the people, that God is inviting you to become.