From the Retiring Vestry Class

Weekly Reflection, Sunday, January 27, 2019

By: Fay Lohr, Tracey Ragsdale, Al Rider & Tom Slater, Vestry Class of 2019

“Faith is not being sure where you’re going but going anyway.” This quote of Frederick Buechner feels appropriate to describe the retiring Vestry class’s inspiration over the last three years; a period of significant change at St. Mary’s. By the numbers, we have experienced two Rector calls, two Associate Rector calls, and nine permanent staff changes representing a total overhaul of clerical and lay staff. Typically, any organization with comparative circumstances would see its stability seriously challenged.

The response of our parish has been remarkable and inspiring. Where there could have been conflict, we saw cooperation. Where there could have been hesitation, we saw generosity. Where there could have been despair, we saw enthusiasm. Where there could have been bitterness, we saw grace.

St. Mary’s has a unique culture, or we could call it spirit, which draws us together. It is our tradition of simplicity, humility, and a strong sense of community that reinforces our faith and has led us through potentially turbulent times. Rather than stall, our response has been an increased commitment to a positive vision. We have grown in so many ways and it feels good.

C. S. Lewis wrote, “What draws people to be friends is that they see the same truth. They share it.” This thought is fully applicable to St. Mary’s parishioners. We feel and live the St. Mary’s spirit together.

We are so thankful for this parish’s love, counsel, and support these past three years.