Friday, March 9, 2012

Departure of our Associate Rector for Pastoral Care

Pastor Ann Willms has decided she will step down effective March 30. In her letter to the congregation she said, “the season of my ministry with you has come to a close. I am now called to be open to new avenues of ministry and to attend more closely to my family.”

I want to express my deepest gratitude and enormous admiration for Ann and the work she has done among us. Most recently, she has completed the organization and training of our Stephen Ministry program, which is now solidly launched. She has visited countless members of our congregation in moments of need, and she has been a tremendously creative member of our staff and a wise counselor to me. She is a gifted preacher and teacher. To say that we will miss her presence at St. Paul's is a major understatement.

As for our next steps, I have consulted with Christie Thomas, our senior warden, and our Vestry. For now, I would like our focus to be on saying farewell to Ann and showing our gratitude for her ministry among us. Her last Sunday will be March 25, and I have asked her to preach that Sunday. As when other associate rectors have left, I'd like us to have a festive coffee hour that day to thank her and show our appreciation.

If you would like to contribute to a gift in thanksgiving for Ann's ministry, we will be making a donation to The Carpenter's Kids in Ann's honor. Contributions may be sent to St. Paul's with "Carpenter's Kids" in the memo line. The Carpenter's Kids is a global partnership that supports education for at-risk children in rural villages of Tanzania and is part of a Diocesan outreach effort that is directed towards several of the Millennium Development Goals.

Ann and her family will be a part of a Carpenter's Kids team from St. Paul's Ivy, which is linked with St. Paul's Nzali, that is going on a mission trip this summer, focused on primary education and fellowship building. More information can be found by clicking HERE.

Thank you for keeping Ann, her family, and all of our staff in your thoughts and prayers.

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