Since there’s some overlap between my congregation and this constituency here on the blog- and because the blog and podcast themselves have become a community all their own- I thought I’d use this space to let you know of coming changes for me and my family. Starting in July, I will be the pastor just down the road at Annandale United Methodist Church. Whether this appointment proves Bishop Lewis’ wisdom or folly only time will tell. You can find out more about the church by clicking here.
If you’re a member of Annandale UMC presently e-stalking me to check me out, I meant that last remark as a joke. I’m an acquired taste to be sure, but I’m not a clown. Just ask the good folks at Aldersgate who tolerated me for a baker’s dozen years. Actually, you can ask most of them (“most” = anyone but L@$).
Thus far, our conversations with Annandale’s leadership have impressed us. I look forward to working with two associates, Chenda Lee and Peter Kwon, who bring not only diversity of experience to the church’s ministry but diversity of perspective too. They come highly recommended by some of my friends, and I look forward to working with them as partners and fellow pastors. Annandale Church itself comes to me with the thumbs up from none other than friend of the podcast Dr. Kendall Soulen who worshipped there before absconding to teach at Emory. Annandale’s current pastor, Clarence Brown, has been a fixture (seriously, he’s even older than Dennis- so says Dennis!) in the Virginia Church since I was a tadpole swimming up the ordination track and I look forward to receiving the baton from him.
As a family, it’s hard to leave a church and a community that means so much to us, is the only home our boys have known, and who were Christ to us when we needed him most. It’s even more difficult to leave a partnership with Dennis Perry that has meant so much to me. That said, we’re grateful the boys will be able to maintain their friendships and sports and will be in a community they’ve already gotten to know somewhat through swimming.
My last Sunday at Aldersgate will be June 10 and because my spring schedule was booked without knowing I’d be getting appointed elsewhere, I’ll unfortunately be away from the pulpit quite a bit in the meantime, speaking at a few conferences and performing weddings. This is hard for me and hard for us as a family given our love for the people in our community and church, just as I’m sure it’s hard for folks at Annandale to say goodbye to Clarence. No doubt the move and the transition will insert itself it into the blog and podcast for a while, so just stay patient with me. Upside is, I don’t actually have any hobbies. Nats tickets have gotten too expensive and I don’t know how to golf so things here won’t stay quiet long.
- Peace, J